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Chapter 1

What's New




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Location Above Ruth's Waterfall, on Gulf Creek, a tributary of Cayuga Lake, 6 miles (9.5km) north of Ithaca in Tompkins County
Access Private but visitors are always welcome.

We decided to build a bridge across Gulf Creek a short distance above Ruth's Waterfall. The Bridge would let us access the portion of our property on the other side of the creek. We plan a nature trail and bog garden there.

The Bridge has been quite an adventure. We built it hoping to have low visual impact but still survive the periodic floods we have experienced since we came to Ruth's Waterfall four years ago. We also wanted to have something we could build ourselves within a fairly modest budget. We pretty much ruled out single span bridges including suspension bridges (too visible) or girder bridges (too expensive, too hard to build by hand). We decided on a two simple "docks" meeting in the middle and simply resting on iron pipe legs in the stream, with timber piers on the stream banks. With this plan, we could drag the two halves onto the banks during the winter. And if we did get a serious flood during the summer, the bridge would (hopefully) simply open up and let it through. We could then drag the two pieces back into position.

Here are photos documenting the bridge building project.

Within two days of completion of The Bridge, there was major flooding in our region. Fortunately, we were on the edge of the rainfall and experienced very minor flooding in Gulf Creek; The Bridge was not bothered at all.


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Last modified: 27-May-2008