This week the topic is Bridges.
—Cee’s Fun Foto Challenge
On the west side of the Golden Gate Bridge, at midspan, there is a small structure that juts up and out from the side of the bridge. It looks like an Olympic Diving platform but it actually serves a more useful function. Instruments are mounted on it that monitor the wind speed & direction, plus the temperature and humidity.
This data collected helps the maintenance crews who work with paint, sealers, epoxy and roadway patching compounds stay within the manufacturer’s guidelines for applying the materials.
The wind data also allows bridge personnel to monitor the forces at work on the span during storms and for deploying maintenance crews on the structure during the day.
Several times a year I made a habit of climbing out onto the platform at night to “inspect the equipment” and to enjoy the view. I took this photo during one such inspection on a night in September. The fog was sending wispy tendrils of cool air through the Gate and the headlights of the approaching cars created a starburst effect in the lens of my iPhone camera.
I never tired of this view of the bridge or the wind-driven, vehicle-induced vibrations that are part of being suspended over the water on a magic steel carpet.