Idaho April 04, 2020
by Emerson The Tallest, Most Impressive Bridge In Idaho Can Be Found In The Town Of Orofino
Sometimes the most impressive sights are hiding out where you would least expect them. It may not be the most popular bridge in the state—the Perrine Bridge in Twin Falls probably holds that title—but the tallest bridge in Idaho is definitely a sight to see. Located in the small town of Orofino, Dent Bridge is the highest of all the bridges in the state at 500-feet tall. Spanning across the Dworshak Reservoir, this impressive man-made structure is must-see for any bridge hunter in the state of Idaho.
Believe it or not, the tallest bridge in Idaho is NOT the famous Perrine Bridge in Twin Falls. Although, that's not a bad guess. Exceeding the Perrine Bridge by 14-feet, the tallest bridge is actually Dent Bridge near Orofino.
Opened in 1971, Dent Bridge was constructed in order to provide passage across the deep waters of Dworshak Reservoir. Not only is it the highest bridge in Idaho, but it's also considered the second-highest reservoir bridge ever built in North America. Bidwell Bar Bridge on California's Lake Oroville is the first.
At 500-feet high, Dent Bridge boasts impressive height. However, its span is also worth noting. Boasting a length of 1,050-feet, it's also the
longest bridge in Idaho, beating the more popular Perrine Bridge by 57-feet.
At the time of its construction, Dent Bridge was considered truly state-of-the-art. It was even declared the winner of the "American Institute of Steel Construction Award of Merit" in 1972. Although its deck appears thin, the bridge was designed to handle the weight of the fully-loaded 110-ton logging trucks that regularly passed over it.
Just like the Bidwell Bar Bridge, a good section of Dent Bridge remains underwater. Only about half of the bridge's towers are visible when the lake is full. Seeing the bridge in person gives you a good idea of just how outstanding this man-made wonder truly is.
Thanks to this bridge, vehicle access to the small community of Elk River was made fully possible. The only other option was building a new, 53-mile road around the entirety of the reservoir, which just wasn't financially feasible. The location for the bridge was chosen based on topography that was most suitable for road access.
As both the tallest and longest bridge in Idaho, Dent Bridge simply doesn't receive the attention it deserves. Whether you're a bridge enthusiast or you simply love scouting out Idaho's little-known man-made wonders, a road trip to Dent Bridge is an absolute must.
Did you know that Dent Bridge is the tallest bridge in the state? Learn about more amazing structures like this one with this list of
10 Beautiful Historic Bridges In Idaho.
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Address: Dent Bridge Rd, Orofino, ID 83544, USA