A forestry bridge south of Whistler that is part of a popular loop for mountain bikers has been permanently closed, announced the RMOW on Wednesday, June 25.
The bridge, built and maintained by the B.C. Ministry of Forests, Lands and Natural Resource Operations, is located where the Sea to Sky trail route crosses over the Cheakamus River.
Ministry engineers closed the bridge after finding "significant deterioration and rot of the bridge log structure," read a municipal release. It was originally scheduled to close in conjunction with the opening of a new cable suspension bridge being built by the RMOW in the area. The new bridge is slated to open in the fall.
As there are no alternative bridges nearby, the trail will not be passable until the new bridge is open, the RMOW noted, although trail users are welcome to use the trail on either side of the closed bridge.
Jerome David, president of the Whistler Off-Road Cycling Association, said the bridge is popular with mountain bikers and called its closure "a bummer" while welcoming the new suspension bridge being built.
"It's a quite common area (for mountain bikers)," he said. "It's a nice cross-country loop instead of doing the more technical stuff in the valley."
Still, David recognized the danger the old bridge posed, and applauded the municipality as well as the ministry for the trail improvements being undertaken in Whistler this year.
"We're really excited with the way things are going," added David.
Signs are now posted at the Jane Lakes Forestry Service Road and the Daisy Forestry Service Roads onto the Sea to Sky trail notifying the public of the closure. Additional signs will be posted at Brandywine Falls.