What is it with adventure bikers and knackered old suspension bridges? Like moths to a flame, it seems we can’t ride past one on our travels without wanting to risk life and limb crossing it.
For some riders, I’m sure they are a necessary evil in remote parts of the world where there isn’t an alternative route. But for others, I suspect the thrill of the challenge attracts them to a perilous crossing.
Just watching some of the suspension bridge crossing videos that litter YouTube leaves you with your heart in your mouth. There is no shortage of bikers trusting their lives to a few rotting planks of wood and some old wire or rope strung together god know how many years ago.
This is exactly what happened when I watched the rider in the video at the bottom of this page. He took his adventure bike across a raging river in Colombia on a suspension bridge that looks like it should have been condemned in the last century. And he’s not on some lightweight dual-sport or locally rented scooter. No, he’s riding more than 200kg of BMW F 800 GS, plus a dry bag full of luggage.
As soon as the suspension bridge crossing begins, you can clearly see the structure is in a poor state of repair. A number of the wooden planks that make up the floor are missing and a good portion of the metal barrier has fallen away.
The rider seems to have second thoughts as he stops a short way into the crossing, but with no way of turning back, he continues on as the bridge strains and sways beneath him.
Finally, he makes it across and mutters a rather rude word to himself as he reaches the other side. It’s only when the rider looks back and you get a full view of the bridge from the side do you realise how sagging and twisted it is.
Let’s just hope he didn’t have to go back the same way.