There are a few landmarks that truly define Cincinnati. One of those landmarks is the John A. Roebling Suspension Bridge linking Covington, KY to Cincinnati, OH. This Cincinnati icon, which is in the National Register of Historic Places and designated as a U.S. National Historic Landmark, was built around the time of the Civil War between 1856 and 1867.
As a member of the Misfits With Cameras club I had the opportunity to have a bucket-list adventure by taking a photo expedition to the top of the Kentucky side of the bridge.
I have a fear of heights. In fact, this fear was so pronounced that not long before this bridge expedition I was unable to step off a ladder on to the roof of my garden shed to finish doing the roofing work. I chose to ignore that fear, which I kept successfully out of my my mind until we began our ascent up the side of the bridge. I'm about 6'3", and the guard rail on the side of the stairs seemed to come no higher than my hip. About halfway up the fear rushed in, and I stood in frozen terror on that see-through stairway bolted to the side of a Civil War era bridge. Looking down, I saw that at least five more of my fellow photographers were below me coming up the stairs. There was nowhere to go but up, so I took a deep breath and started back up the stairs.
Once you reach the top of the stairs you are forced to either climb over the concrete railing, or go through the large holes in the railing. I was too scared to crawl over, because if you mess up, you fall off the bridge. I maneuvered my 6'3" body through a hole just barely big enough to fit me. Did I mention I'm a bit claustrophobic as well.
Once I reached the top and was on sure footing I was able to take in the view! It was then I really began to appreciate the unique nature of my vista. The fear of the trip up was now a distant memory.
When the first people began to cross the bridge in December of 1866 it was the longest suspension bridge in the world!
John A. Roebling had a hand in designing a number of bridges. One of his other well known creations stands as an icon of its city as well - The Brooklyn Bridge. The Brooklyn Bridge cost Roebling his life though. An accident at the beginning of construction led to tetanus which proved fatal. Mr. Roebling never got to see his most famous project completed.
Our band of 'misfit' photographers managed to stay up on top of the bridge for about an hour. It was a fantastic experience that I'm so glad I was able to experience.
Oh yeah.....and a week later while my family was all out in the back yard I got out the extension ladder and promptly scaled it to the lofty peak of my garden shed!