One scene that can really accentuates a model train (and I use the phrase to mean a locomotive and wagons) is that of a model bridge. To paraphrase Tony Koester, "It raises the models onto a pedestal, the modelling equivalent of an exclamation point." From my own point of view, there was always that childlike sense of danger as the train crept out onto a spindly structure with no restraints and an incredible height.
We are "blessed" in New Zealand that our engineers where challanged to tame our landscape with massive engineering works; cuts, fills, tunnels and bridges. You dont have to travel far anywhere on the network to find a bridge, and not all of them are simple plate girder affairs.
I think this is Bridge 45, definitely straddling the Whenuakura river just east of Patea. As in most large bridges on the line, it is at the bottom of a downgrade before the line climbs back up out of the vally to the Waverley race course. Drew pointed it out to me as it has complete upside down wagons underwater on the western side, used to shore up the river banks.
However, the one thing that struck me about the bridge is how...."different" it is. Its not particularly high in the grand scheme of things, but the structure is almost reminiscent of a mini-viaduct with its large box section. It must have been quite tempting to build a simple truss bridge, or even sink piles for a girder bridge....but for some reason the engineers in charge didnt, and gave us this.
I'd like to find space for it on my future layout, but bridge 41 north of Patea is quite tempting as well.....sigh....
So what bridges tempt you to break out the modelling materials for your own layout?
PS: The photos is from the cab of DXB5068 in charge of train 545 on Monday. The train consisted of 14 loaded UK's and 16 empty OM's....thats a long train!