Delaware River Viaduct, Columbia NJ
The Delaware River Viaduct is a railroad bridge across the Delaware River about 2 miles south of the Delaware Water Gap that was built in 1910 as part a rail line. The bridge is 1,452 feet long and 65 feet high from water level to the top of the rail. It is the sister to the line's larger Paulinskill Viaduct. The Delaware River Viaduct also crosses Interstate 80 on the east (New Jersey) side of the river. The viaduct was abandoned in 1983.
This viaduct parking is similar to the Paulinskill Viaduct parking. When I went, in fall of 2017, I parked directly under the bridge. That was a mistake. It is a much better idea to park at the Chick-Fil-A down the road and take the walk.
Under Bridge Parking Location: 40°56'12.5"22N75°06'08.1"22W
Chick-Fil-A's Parking Location: 40°56'04.9"22N75°06'05.7"22W
How to get up there:
There are short steep paths on the far side of the bridge from there you will know where to go.
How to get down there:
At the top of the viaduct there is two or three manholes. The one you're gonna wanna go down is the first one (if it is still how it was when I was there in fall of 2017). From there you can go through the walk ways that lead to the inside the bridge.
Once again the Delaware Viaduct is absolutely illegal and state property. If you get caught you will get caught by State Troopers, who are anything but forgiving and understanding. As an example here is a little story.
David (my boyfriend), Jevin (our friend), and I went to the Paulinskill Viaduct;Â David and I had been there before. After we did some exploring of the area and the bridge we decided to continuing exploring and go to the Delaware Viaduct, which none of us have been before. So we found the location and parked on the side of the road under the bridge. We scaled up the steep hill to the bridge and once we made it to the top we saw some other people up there, with families and little children; this eased out nerves a bit. We were having a blast, waving at cars, taking pictures, etc. We then ventured down the manhole. The inner part of the bridge is so intriguing that we spent a good while down there.Â Jevin went first, on our way back up, he took a peek around and said we were all good. I was next to go. As I poked my head up from under the manhole I heard a deep intimidating voice and I saw those dark blue pants and golden strip; I slowly followed that strip all the way to the State Troopers eyes. We were all heavily questioned and asked for ID's which were conveniently in the car. The Trooper apparently received a call that people were throwing rocks off the bridge and into the traffic on route 80. I assured him that it was not us and we would never do such a thing; he had no way of proving it was us so all he did was ask us to go to the car to get our ID's. I have had my share of getting in trouble with the cops so I knew exactly what to say and how to say it and when to say it and therefore got us out of a large trespassing fine.
P.S. All of the Delaware Viaduct locations are illegal to be on and considered trespassing because it is state property.
1. Tunnels With No Purpose:
Under route 80 lay two metal tunnels, separated by the inlet to Columbia Lake. I am not too sure why the one tunnel (Idle Lake Road Tunnel) is there; it leads to no where while the other one (Columbia Lake Road Tunnel) leads down the road to a dam.Â These tunnels are kind of boring, but spooky to walk through alone without a light. They also make for a great blank canvas for creative photography. If you have a car with an exhaust it is a great place to get those revs up and hear the roar of your exhaust.
Columbia Lake Rd Tunnel Location: 40°55'39.3"22N75°05'00.5"22W
Idle Lake Rd Tunnel Location: 40°55'38.3"22N75°05'04.5"22W
2. Abandoned Watermill:
Up stream from the tunnels is an abandoned dam with a water mill. It is a fun place to explore, yet really hard to actually get in to. If you are down for some trespassing bring a bulk cutter for the lock on the door.
Dam from Columbia Lake Rd Location: 40°55'26.2"22N75°05'11.7"22W
Dam and Water mill from Idle Lake Rd Location: 40°55'27.0"22N75°05'15.1"22W
P.S. I have found no information whether the tunnels and or dam are illegal, no trespassing areas. So, adventure at your own risk.
Constructed in 1908, the Paulinskill Viaduct was considered to be one of the wonders of the world. It stands 1,100 feet long and towers 115 feet above the Paulinskill River. For a brief period of time, the reinforced concrete arched bridge was the largest structure of its kind in the entire world. The train line went out of service in 1979, the railroad tracks were torn up in 1985 and the Viaduct was abandoned. Since then, it has remained a true hidden treasure…