Electric Route 66 Dashcam: Oklahoma Pony Bridge
Today's dashcam video upload comes from the lovely Route 66 state of Oklahoma. We traveled here in October 2021, and several times we forgot to record our car's dashcam as we went! But we did remember to catch a section featuring the William H. Murray Bridge.
|Crossing the William H. Murray Bridge, also known as Pony Bridge, westbound|
This famous Route 66 bridge crosses the Canadian River a few miles west of El Reno, OK. It's often called the Pony Bridge, because it boasts a whopping 38 pairs of camelback pony trusses. Now part of US Highway 281, it was completed in 1933 and opened the following year as part of a new alignment of US 66, bypassing the towns of Calumet and Geary on the original, unpaved, 1926 alignment of Route 66.
|The 1933 alignment of Route 66 west of El Reno, OK|| |
|A view from the west end of Pony Bridge|
|This bridge was Oklahoma Federal Aid Project No. 164-H|
We didn't have a ton of time to get back home from Oklahoma on this trip, so we stayed on the 1933 alignment for this drive, which is mostly a straight line and pretty close to Interstate 40. But it's still a nice drive on a lot of vintage 1930s concrete pavement, and I-40 is mostly out of sight, so I uploaded the full 10 minutes of the 7-mile drive, with nothing sped up or cut out. It is embedded below, or you can view it directly on YouTube by following this link, for more sizing options.
This drive ends with a minute-long crossing of the Pony Bridge. Rather than a video filled with roadside activity, this one is more of a relaxing, idyllic cruise in real-time for a lazy Sunday. And the drive across the bridge, with its pony trusses scooting by from 4 different angles at once, is kind of mesmerizing. I hope you enjoy it! If you wish to drive the original bridge yourself, you will have to hurry: this bridge is scheduled to be closed around June 2022 for a major reconstruction project lasting 2 years. The famous pony trusses will remain on the sides of the reconstructed bridge, but the old roadway will be replaced with a new, wider structure.
|Looking east on an overcast October day. The pony trusses seem to stretch on forever.|