Sunday, February 27, 2011

Bridge of the Week #50: Muskrat Cove Footbridge

After more than a year (with a few weeks off for one reason or another), we're still not done with the bridges, but we've hit the big 5-0. For this big number, I've chosen probably the smallest bridge on the whole list, the Muskrat Cove Footbridge.

I'll say again that for this project I'm not including most footbridges, particularly within parks, but I will if they cross a significant waterway or otherwise have some significance for runners. Like the Burke Ave. Bridge, this one crosses the Bronx River in the Bronx, but a ways farther north still. This bridge can be accessed by a paved bike path that begins at the Woodlawn Metro North station on the north side of E. 233 St. The path continues to the north for about 3/4 of a mile on the west bank of the river to the footbridge. However, on the east side of the bridge the path deadends, as there is no paved path, and there doesn't appear to be a dirt path that goes anywhere, only signs warning you not to go past a fence lest you be trespassing on railroad property. According to the Web site of the Bronx River Alliance, a nonprofit that is helping clean up, restore and educate the public about the Bronx River, a dirt pathway is or was planned from the east side of the bridge back to the station, but it doesn't currently look like that area is very passable. That Web site is also where I discovered that that section along the river is called Muskrat Cove. They also described the footbridge as "scenic", but the bridge itself is small and short and looks kind of rusted out actually!

Still, despite the short length and deadend nature of the path, it's a very nice and scenic place to run. It follows the river under the Bronx River Parkway and underneath the Nereid Ave. Bridge (to be discussed later). At one point you'll see a highway sign on the Bronx River Parkway saying you are entering Westchester County, but I am sure that the land immediately along the river is still in New York City, as are the streets to the east, although the streets to the west are in Yonkers. Also, at the trail head at the train station is a marker that maps the length of the Bronx River, which is a nice and interesting item to look at. On the south of the train station is E. 233rd St., with another bridge that I'll discuss later, and south of there the park pathway continues on the east side of the river.
Pics: 1. Muskrat Cove Footbridge; 2. Bronx River marker; 3. Pathway passage under the Bronx River Parkway

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