Camp Tahquitz pedestrian bridge to make crossing Highway 38 safer

Sid Garcia Image
Thursday, October 16, 2014
IE pedestrian bridge to make crossing Hwy 38 safer
A pedestrian bridge has been put into place at Camp Tahquitz in the San Bernardino Mountains, aiming to make crossing Highway 38 safer for everyone.

ANGELUS OAKS, Calif. (KABC) -- It's the classic image of the Boy Scout - helping an elderly lady cross the road. Now, the scouts themselves, and everyone else, will be able to safely cross a dangerous highway, thanks to a new pedestrian bridge at Camp Tahquitz in the San Bernardino Mountains.

After years of planning, engineering and fundraising, the Safe Passage Bridge was finally being lowered into place. It will allow thousands of Boy Scouts, horses and visitors to safely walk or ride over a very busy Highway 38 at Camp Tahquitz.

"We do between 15,000 and 20,000 crossings over this highway annually, and I think it's a bigger safety issue than even fire right now. By taking care of this and getting all of that pedestrian traffic off of the highway, it'll make this so much safer," said John Fullerton with the Boy Scouts of America.

Camp Tahquitz, located near Angelus Oaks, has been there for nearly 60 years. Highway 38 is busier now with big trucks and cars.

"When you have automobiles coming around that blind curve at 60, 70 miles per hour, there's always a risk of a child getting killed. So, I will sleep a lot better up here over that," said Andy Hale, scout master.

To make it happen, the Boy Scouts raised $350,000 and contractors donated time and labor.

Caltrans said this could be the first of many more pedestrian bridges lining state highways in mountain areas.

"I would think that maybe this would be the first of its kind for something we might see more at the mountain regions to cross these state highways for camps and maybe in communities that need these types of pedestrian bridges," said Terri Kalinga with Caltrans.

"We have this bridge that our kids are not going to be in danger by crossing the highway. It's a good day on our mountain," Hale said.