Bridges are versatile. They carry a variety of loads – cars, commercial trucks, recreational vehicles, motorcycles, bicycles, pedestrians.
Even before it has been cleared to accommodate vehicles, the new bridge over the Snake River at Weiser was pressed into service this week. A sheepherder, who was moving his band of wool on hooves to a new grazing area, noticed the bridge was empty.
No sense letting a good bridge go to waste, right?
So he herded the migrating sheep over the Snake River on the unoccupied – and officially closed – half of the new bridge. Traffic will begin using the bridge this spring after finishing touches to the approaches and deck.
ITD bridge inspection equipment specialist Ronnie George took the accompanying photograph this week while preparing to inspect the bridge.
“We had walked out on the bridge and were talking with the inspectors from the Oregon Department of Transportation and the construction inspectors from Residency 3 when we saw this ... coming across the bridge," he said of the sheep drive. "There were hundreds and hundreds of sheep being moved to different pasture from Oregon into Idaho using the completed half of the new bridge.
“I guess the bridge gets used for many purposes other than cars, trucks and the occasional pedestrian crossing,” he said.