Bridge to Nowhere, an abandoned road in California

Bridge to Nowhere California
The Bridge to Nowhere

The Bridge to Nowhere is a part of a road originally built to be the road from Azuza to the mountain town of Wrightwood.

A road was here up to the bridge, but the track was later destroyed by a flood in 1938.

Today, you can access the bridge by taking an excellent 10 mile (16 km) round trip trail that follows a stream lying mostly alone in the middle of the wilderness.

Where is Bridge to Nowhere located?

The Bridge to Nowhere is an arch bridge built in 1936 north of Azusa, California in the San Gabriel Mountains not far away from Los Angeles.

This bridge spans the east branch of the San Gabriel River. In fact, it used to be part of a road connecting the San Gabriel Valley to Wrightwood. But the project did not finally see the light of day.

You can situate the bridge on the map below:


Enlarge the map

Facts about the Bridge to Nowhere hike

Road description:

Today, the bridge is only accessible by a 10 mile (16km) round trip hike. It climbs to 2,760 feet (840 m) crossing the river bed six times. It’s 180 feet (55 m) long.

Sections of the old asphalt road still lie along the East Fork Trail, along with a number of concrete slabs that formed the foundations for bridges that were also destroyed by flooding.

Despite its popularity, the trail is frequently flooded and can be very dangerous. There have been several deaths along the San Gabriel River as a result of hikers taking extreme risks crossing the rough waters of the river after heavy rains.

Also, today the bridge is known to be a nice spot for bungee jumping near Los Angeles.

bungee jumping near LA
Bungee jumping on the Bridge to Nowhere

History of the bridge:

The East Fork Road was still under construction when it was washed away during the 1938 flood. After that the East Fork Road project was abandoned in the floods, leaving the bridge to be abandoned.

Parts of the old asphalt road are still present along the East Fork Trail that leads to the bridge, and there are still a number of concrete slabs that are part of the foundations of other destroyed bridges.

How to get to the Bridge to Nowhere?

There are no roads that allowed access directly to the bridge. In order to access the bridge, you have to walk the East Fork Trail.

To access the East Fork Trail from Los Angeles you have to go to Azusa city and from there take the San Gabriel Canyon Road (road 39). Then turn on the East Fork road until you reach a parking lot where the hike starts.

You visualize how to get there from downtown LA on this map:

Is the Bridge to Nowhere hike open?

The trail to the bridge all year round. However, in case of heavy rain, the path can be very dangerous and can be closed.

There are several abandoned bridges in the world one the most known is the Petrobras viaduct in Brazil.

We also advise you to avoid the high season or the weekend if you want to enjoy your walk! If you can’t come here in the low season come early in the morning. The hike is very busy with people coming from LA on the weekends.

If you are in the Los Angeles area and looking for a good hike you can surely choose the East Fork Trail which leads to Bridge to Nowhere. You will be able to enjoy magnificent landscapes and discover this perching bridge in the middle of nowhere and why not try a bungee jump?

Pictures sources: By Thorsten Trotzenberg – Flickr: The Bridge to Nowhere, CC BY 2.0, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=23276098 / By Mitch Barrie – Flickr: Jumper, CC BY-SA 2.0, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=18371997


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