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Sutliff, Iowa: Sutliff Bridge

An old highway bridge, partly destroyed in a 2008 flood, was reopened to pedestrians in 2013. This makes it somewhat less interesting.

5546 130th St. NE, Sutliff, IA
Take Hwy F14 into the hamlet of Sutliff. Once you see the river, you'll see the bridge.
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Sutliff Bridge, 2015.

Sutliff Bridge

The bridge at Sutliff has been fully restored. One bridge span was destroyed in the 2008 flood, but the bridge is now open again to foot traffic (It has been closed to vehicles for many years). A great place for a picnic. A bar/tavern/deli is just across the street.

[Bob Peterson, 08/12/2013]

May 2015: Photo added.

Bridge remnants.

Broken Sutliff Bridge

Late 19th Century Sutliff bridge, listed on the National Registry of Historic Places. A beautiful stone and iron structure crossing the Cedar River, the bridge and the biker bar next door are the two landmarks of tiny Sutliff. The bridge (one of the longest Parker trestles in Iowa) was built in 1898 to replace a ferry and served for nearly a century.

In 2008, the devastating floods that hit this part of the state carried away a third of the bridge, depositing it a few hundred yards downstream. What's left of the bridge is a strange sight, spanning about two thirds of the river and then ending in mid-air. There are no plans to the restore the bridge, which is right in my opinion. If the bridge was rare as it was, now it's absolutely unique! If you visit (worth a detour from Highway 1), you can drive right up to the east bank of the bridge. Looking downstream, you may be able to see the missing third of the bridge sitting in the river, though it settled somewhat in the melt of 2010. On the west bank on County Road F19 (which includes the bridge), you can walk up to the west bank of the bridge which has also partially collapsed.

[Jonathan Frazier, 04/27/2010]

Nearby Offbeat Places

American Gothic BarnAmerican Gothic Barn, Mt. Vernon, IA - 7 mi.
Creepy Goddess of Life: Gift for Herbert HooverCreepy Goddess of Life: Gift for Herbert Hoover, West Branch, IA - 12 mi.
Devonian Fossil GorgeDevonian Fossil Gorge, Iowa City, IA - 11 mi.
In the region:
The Black Angel, Iowa City, IA - 13 mi.

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