Capilano Suspension Bridge - Originally published 2009

The mission of Animated Meat is to seek out and document both the profound and the mundane.  I must admit that the Capilano Suspension Bridge had me scratching my head when I first read about it. 

Ed at the sign

There was a reason why I put it off until the last day in Vancouver.  To be honest, I wasn’t quite sure what to make of it.  Yes, I am a sucker for a roadside attraction.  I love what my dad refers to as a snake museum.  But after looking into it, I decided that it was a little too far outside the city limits to gamble on. 

Mai beneath the bridge.

Mai beneath the bridge.

We only had a few days to spend in Vancouver and I really didn’t want to burn a bunch of time traveling outside to the city to look at some suspension bridge.

Up above it all

However, now that I have visited it, I’m glad that we went.  First, it’s really not that far outside the city.  It’s right across the Lions Gate Bridge in North Vancouver.  The drive took us fifteen minutes from the front of our hotel to the parking lot at the bridge.

No one got me ready for the sway.

No one got me ready for the sway.

So what is it?  Well, it’s a suspension bridge.  It sits two hundred and thirty feet above the Capilano River.  To put that in perspective, when you walk across it, you are actually higher up that you would be if you were at the top of the Statue of Liberty.  It literally leaves you swinging in the breeze.

Swinging in the breeze.

Swinging in the breeze.

Since I have been at the helm of Animated Meat, I have put my life in the hands of countless engineers.  This bridge is so well built that it survived the collision with a 46-ton Douglass Fir when it collapsed in a snowstorm.

Us and totems

So what lies on the other side of the span?  Inside the grove of trees are more walkways that allow visitors to get a bird’s eye view of the forest that surround Vancouver.


Aside from the forest walk, the park also has made an effort to incorporate the participation of First Nation people.  The park has a noteworthy collection of authentic totem poles as well as employs native Canadians to works as docents.