Bridges are often seen just as a crossing from A to B. Or a feat of engineering. But sometimes that barrier you must bridge to reach your goal. Or the bridge over that barrier. Or a meeting point.
I find bridges over water often make beautiful backdrops.


I’ve crossed the Forth Rail Bridge more times than I can count, so was quite chuffed when it was made a UNESCO heritage site in 2015. And now it’s also one of the things that welcomes me back home.
Edinburgh North is great for off-road cycling, along the Water of Leith and the old railway paths. One afternoon toward the end of spring last year I (finally) cycled out to Queensferry from Cramond. There are two routes, along the sea through the Dalmeny Estate (you’ll want a mountain bike or at least hybrid tyres) or on the path alongside the road out closer to the airport. One of the things I wanted to do was to get a panorama across the width of the rail bridge, but when I stitched my photos I only got part of it … so will have to try again come summer.

This is the first point where you see the bridge, just before you come off the cycle path above Queensferry, if you use the non-sea route.
the Forth Rail Bridge


A few years ago I spent a week in Glasgow for a conference, end October, when it was surprisingly warm, too warm to wear a coat. We had blue sky through most of the week, and I took advantage of that to walk along the Clyde between the Armadillo and my hotel. At one end, the Tradeston footbridge, and near the other, the Clyde Arc (Squinty) Bridge.

the Tradeston footbridge at night Clyde Arc Bridge


Leaving Scotland and a good bit of the way across the world … we stopped in Sukhothai Historical Park in Thailand, on our way up to Chiang Mai from Bangkok. This panorama is just over 180 degrees, rotating on the same spot on one of the longer footbridges in the park.

Sukhothai Historical Park, Thailand


Then across to the other side of the world to the Golden Gate Bridge … one of the more gruesome reasons for using one … crisis counselling along the Golden Gate Bridge

Having got that out of the way, talking about bridges to people… at the other end, on the ferry back to San Francisco from Sausalito I bumped into someone I’d shared a lab with a few years before in Edinburgh!

Golden Gate Bridge

California was a free stopover on my way to Australia. Hiking through Kata Djuta, I remember a little footbridge to an oasis in that hot, hot, hot desert. But can’t find the photo :S

… so, across to Sydney, which was the actual destination of that journey but turned out also to be the last point and where I flew out from.

the Sydney Harbour Bridge late afternoon
… it’s a bit difficult to separate the Harbour Bridge from the Opera House – looking back toward the centre from the other side of the bridge …
Sydney and the Opera House from the other side of the Harbour Bridge


Then back in the US and across to the east coast to the Manhattan Bridge – this is more the portal onto it than the bridge itself – from Chinatown, one afternoon with my cousin going into New York from Jersey to have lunch in Little Italy.

the Manhattan Bridge from Chinatown, New York


… and a bit further north into Canada …

Lion's Gate Bridge, Vancouver … on the west coast, the Lion’s Gate Bridge in Vancouver, from Stanley Park
… then across further east, to the The Jacques Cartier Bridge at the Old Port in Montréal.
The Jacques Cartier Bridge over the St. Lawrence River, Montréal


… another huge jump across the world to Cape Town, this footbridge is near the take-off point for the journey across to Robben Island. Beautiful winter’s day just after the 2010 World Cup when we were all coming out of mourning.

V &A Waterfront, Cape Town


And then full circle back to Edinburgh, for some reason I keep coming back here! Part of the reason I cycled out to the Forth Rail Bridge via Cramond is there’s another bridge there, well, a causeway, rather, across to the island, which is normally submerged under the Forth. A bit scary to cross when the tide is starting to come back in, though if you do it in good time you should not drown.

Cramond Island & causeway

This post started with me thinking about the Forth Rail Bridge … even after leaving a fair few bridges out has ended up as a whistlestop tour circumnavigating the globe!


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