1 vote

Rolling Prairie Trail - West Fork Cedar River Bridge



Approaching from south

Photo taken by Dylan VanAntwerp in December 2016


BH Photo #374417



Closed deck plate girder bridge over West Fork Cedar River on abandoned railroad (former UP, ex-CNW, nee-CGW)
Dumont, Butler County, Iowa
Derelict/abandoned with severe fire damage
Future prospects
Possibly awaiting future repairs and conversion into a trail bridge
DPG spans built 1901, abandoned for rail usage 2003, timber approach damaged by arson ca. 2010
- American Bridge Co. of New York
- Chicago & North Western Railway (CNW)
- Chicago Great Western Railway (CGW)
- Rail-to-trail
- Union Pacific Railroad (UP)
3 x 55' Deck plate girder
Open Deck Pile Trestle approaches
Length of largest span: 55.0 ft.
Total length: 400.0 ft.
Also called
UP - West Fork Cedar River Bridge (Dumont)
CNW - West Fork Cedar River Bridge (Dumont)
CGW - West Fork Cedar River Bridge (Dumont)
Rolling Prairie Trail - Dumont Trestle
CGW - Dumont Trestle
Approximate latitude, longitude
+42.74822, -92.95045   (decimal degrees)
42°44'54" N, 92°57'02" W   (degrees°minutes'seconds")
Approximate UTM coordinates
15/504055/4732857 (zone/easting/northing)
Quadrangle map:
Dumont South
Inventory number
BH 74936 (Bridgehunter.com ID)

Update Log 

  • December 29, 2016: Updated by Dylan VanAntwerp: Added info and build date
  • December 27, 2016: Added by Dylan VanAntwerp


  • Dylan VanAntwerp - dylan_vanantwerp [at] live [dot] com


Rolling Prairie Trail - West Fork Cedar River Bridge
Posted December 29, 2016, by Dylan VanAntwerp (dylan_vanantwerp [at] live [dot] com)

I thought this was a huge timber trestle from aerial views, possibly the largest stand alone timber bridge in the state. However, it is actually a three span DPG bridge with a large timber trestle approach to the west. The west approach has had a large section in the middle torched pretty bad. There is an improvised walkway over the burnt area, but it looked so rickety I didn't even try walking over it.

I honestly don't know for sure how to list this bridge. It definitely has not been converted for trail usage. Google maps lists it as being on the Rolling Prairie Trail, but I am not even sure it that is correct. Listing the bridge as a Rolling Prairie Trail bridge might be speculative at best.

Rolling Prairie Trail - West Fork Cedar River Bridge
Posted December 27, 2016, by Dylan VanAntwerp (dylan_vanantwerp [at] live [dot] com)

Technically, this bridge may not be a part of the Rolling Prairie Trail, since it doesn't seem to have been converted to trail usage before it was burned. However, it was definitely intended to become a part of the trail in the future, as it and the section of former railroad ROW it belonged on were purchased for that express purpose.

Information as to what exactly happened to this bridge is sketchy, but it is obviously severely damaged. I was not able to find any information searching Google, but a Youtuber commenting on a video about the Rolling Prairie Trail commented that it was a shame that the farmer burnt the bridge near Dumont. I was unable to find anything to corroborate this.