Tumbling Thursday

Tumbling Thursday was another everyday adventure.

I met a young lady through Facebook that was in need of heaters for her home. She had 2 small children & needed better heat in her home. Volunteering 2, I tested them, and verified they were in good working order and agreed to bring them to her place of employment on Thursday.

What I didn’t realize was that she lived 2 counties north of my town.

No worries, I thought… I’ll just enjoy the ride.

I asked my Best Friend to come along with me so I could take him to a few places he’d never been before.

We loaded up the heaters in my car & struck out on our 125 mile round trip. First, we stopped by Target for some Angry Bird time & a Hazelnut Latte for me. I saw one of my lovely girls there, filling out an application for employment. We spoke for about a half hour, I gave her the name & # of a lady hiring, hugged, then left off on our trip.

My best friend & love was amazingly patient on the long drive. I pulled off the road a several times so he could take a few pictures with his fancy camera. He collected some great shots!

We passed through Yuck town (name omitted to protect citizens) successfully with no negativity. And before we knew it, we were approaching the old rickety condemned 33 bridge.

This bridge has a great deal of history & is currently suspended over the Clinch River with rubber bands, duct tape, twist ties, glue, bubble gum, and a large amount of prayer! For 20 years I would hold my breathe until we successfully make it across the bridge to the other side. Here’s a bit of history: bridgehunter

“State Highway 33 Continuous Warren Through truss Bridge over Clinch River (Norris Lake) in Union County #87-SR0033-15.83 One of East Tennessee’s longest continuous Warren through truss bridges. View is from south approach, headed northbound. Note curve in approach to bridge superstructure.

1st Photo seen bellow was taken by Calvin Sneed in August 2008

More unusually scary facts about this bridge:


Part of what makes this bridge creepy are the rumors of the current bridge’s stability. Here is an exert from a local paper’s write up on the bridge:

“It’s a small community, so

people talk. But we’re fully funded from start to finish. There are no major hiccups thus far.”

“The new bridge is slated to be carrying traffic and the old structure dismantled by June 30, 2012. Although 19 months have passed on the 32-month project, Manning said the contractor has completed less than 30 percent of the job.

Workers so far have erected two sets of support pillars for the new bridge. Each pillar is 10 feet in diameter. They have four more sets of supports to construct. Each of those pillars sits upon a 32-foot-square footing embedded in the bedrock below the river silt.

Workers on barges position a metal frame called a cofferdam on the floor of the river and install sheet pilings more than 70 feet high to drain as much water as possible from the area. Drills on the barges dig 15-20 feet into the bedrock to assure a solid foundation. Explosives inserted into the holes then loosen bedrock that is scooped out before concrete is poured.

Because the new bridge is within 40 feet of the old Veterans Memorial Bridge, workers can’t use explosives for the new pillars closest to the old structure. Underwater explosives could undermine footings for the old bridge.

Braden noted the existing bridge was built before Norris Dam created the lake…”

“The 1,915-foot-long Veterans Memorial Bridge replaced a single-lane, wood-deck, metal-truss structure that was built in 1916-17 called the Ousley Bridge/Miller’s Ferry Bridge, Manning said. When Veterans Memorial Bridge was built, workers moved the old Ousley Bridge to Grainger County.”

The preceding was borrowed from:knoxnews

Okay, history lesson over, we drove over this rickety bridge twice on Tumbling Thursday.

Then we stopped at the gas station where the lady worked to give her the heaters.

Now what do we do? Well, check out the Gap of course!! I’ve written about the Gap before and posted pictures, so I’ll omit that for now. The 3 states that argue over the Cumberland Gap township area have built a walkway to the Iron Furnace. It’s nice, but it cuts off access to the water.

To get to the waterfall, one must bend down low and go under the rail or jump over it. My friend snapped some awesome shots with his camera and then…the tumbling part comes. I went under the rail, he went over – kinda. He landed on his back atop 4 large rocks. Not good…

After getting up and shaking off the dirt on his back, he was laughing. I was almost crying. My mind rushed with thoughts of broken bones, ripped tendons and that we were miles away from any hospital!! In the end, we determined that he was okay, but was going to be seriously sore for the next few days!!!

He was ready to shoot some pics of the waterfall after that Thursday Tumbling, so we picked our adventure back up. We went to Bell County, KY to find the illustrious P38. We drove through old historic downtown Middlesboro only to learn that the owner of the P38 had sold the bird. A tad disappointed, we turned around and headed back home.

The only way to get home is to go through the mountain, literally. (That tunnel has some history also) We drove through the tunnel from KY to TN.

Maybe I’ll save that tunnel for another day’s post…this concludes the adventurous Tumbling Thursday!


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  1. I do not even know how I stopped up here, but I thought this publish used to be great. I do not recognise who you might be but definitely you’re going to a famous blogger in case you are not already ;). Sorry for bad English Cheers from India!

    • Sometimes ignorance is bliss my friend 🙂 As a wee child, I remember the old bridge before this one. It was far more unstable.

      One drawback to the new bridge will be not being able to dive off the bridge anymore 🙁

      • I love this…at least you are enjoying things/place with your “friend/love” . These are times you can not take back or replace. Enjoy this time my dear friend..it will be over before you know it.

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