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High Bridge: You Won’t Believe It Until You See It!

On a gorgeous weekend in April, the first wave of park visitors to cross High Bridge at High Bridge Trail State Park kicked off the first weekend the bridge was open for public use.

Since that Friday afternoon, the park has been host to record breaking attendance at the River Road access area and the stretch of trail heading east toward the bridge. Park Manager Eric Hougland estimates close to 3,000 people visited the bridge the weekend of April 6 – 9, 2012. Mr. Hougland wrote “the visitation at High Bridge was incredible the past 3 days.” 

Someone is excited about the opening of the bridge!

The Lyles family shows their excitement of the bridge being open

From a written survey conducted by Longwood University Professor Dr. Carl Riden, the park was able to capture information on park visitors who ventured onto the bridge. Visitors from all over Virginia and 14 other states including Alaska, Maine, and Washington D.C. participated in the survey. 

Park visitors cross the High Bridge.

Nearly 3,000 people visited the bridge the weekend of April 6 – 9, 2012

Park Education Specialist Bob Flippen’s educational programs also experience a large number of participants. Mr. Flippen led two “walk and talk” programs on the bridge with a total of 180 in attendance. For more information on upcoming programs and events at High Bridge Trail, click here.

Park Education Specialist Bob Flippen.

Education Specialist Bob Flippen talks to park visitors about the history of the bridge

The Friends of High Bridge Trail and park staff did a great job parking cars and spent extra time making sure all the restrooms stayed sparkling clean. Mr. Hougland is grateful to the Friends group for providing lunch for park staff on a very busy weekend day. To contact the Friends group, click here.

This is one way to get to the bridge!

Many park visitors ride their bikes to the bridge

The majestic High Bridge is the centerpiece of the park.The bridge is 2,422 feet long and 125 feet above the Appomattox River. The original bridge was built in 1853 as part of the South Side Railroad. The current steel-tower bridge was built in 1914.

High Bridge Trail is about 32 miles long and runs through Cumberland, Nottoway and Prince Edward counties and the towns of Burkeville, Farmville, Pamplin City, Prospect and Rice.

Entrances - Parking availability:

  • Rice's Depot Road, 1/4-mile off U.S. 460 at Rice, near trail milepost 142
  • River Road, three miles off N. Main St. in Farmville, near trail milepost 146
  • Osborne Road, 1/4-mile off N. Main St. in Farmville, near trail milepost 149
  • Municipal lots in Farmville where the trail intersects with Main St. near trail milepost 150
  • Tuggle Road, off U.S. 460 and near U.S. 15 North, near trail milepost 156
  • Prospect Road, off U.S. 460 at Prospect, near trail milepost 161
  • Elam, off U.S. 460 at Sulpher Spring Rd., near trail milepost 164
  • Heights School Rd., of U.S. Business 460 near Pamplin, near trail milepost 168


Published: 04/17/2012


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