Bridge to Bridge

On Monday, P and I crossed a long-time goal off of my West Palm Beach bucket list: we conquered what I like to call the “Bridge to Bridge.”  Approximately three miles long, the “Bridge to Bridge” is a walk/run route that encompasses the sidewalk between Flagler Drive and the Intracoastal, Cocoanut Row (on Palm Beach), and both the Flagler Memorial and Royal Park Bridges.

It’s something I’ve always wanted to accomplish and a walk we decided to take on a whim.  Our usual plan of action is to park on Royal Poinciana Way on Palm Beach and take the Lake Trail north on the east side of the Intracoastal.  While crossing Cocoanut Row, P and I spontaneously decided to hit the Flagler Memorial Bridge.  What was originally going to be a quick pre-dinner stroll soon became an hour-long trek.

First, we got to check out the Flagler Memorial Bridge construction.

Sunset over the (under construction) Flagler Memorial Bridge.
Sunset over the (under construction) Flagler Memorial Bridge.

The project seems to be quite a mess and taking longer than anyone predicted.  The good news is that the new bridge will be wider and higher, with eight foot wide pedestrian walkways on both sides and 21 foot clearance underneath.  The Florida Department of Transportation is also removing the overpass across Flagler Drive and installing a signalized intersection.  I’m looking forward to driving over the new and improved bridge each day on my way to work.

After we navigated the construction site, we reached the Downtown Waterfront and City Commons where we were able to get some postcard perfect pictures of the sunset and sailboats… and take a rest.

P enjoying the view of the Intracoastal from the Downtown Waterfront.
P enjoying the view of the Intracoastal from the Downtown Waterfront.
Sailboats anchored for the night.
Sailboats anchored for the night.

We even got to see the moon peeking over Phillip’s Point.

Moonrise over Downtown West Palm Beach.
Moonrise over Downtown West Palm Beach.

By the time P and I made it down Flagler Drive to the Royal Park Bridge, it was dark.  The streetlights lining each side of the bridge reflected in the water, amplifying their glow.

The Royal Park Bridge at nighttime.
The Royal Park Bridge at nighttime.

This was our halfway point and we trudged up the incline.  The Royal Park Bridge is a popular spot for runners because it’s one of the only simulated hills within walking distance of Downtown (as I’m sure you know, Florida is a relatively flat state).  We also passed families fishing off of the bridge, another favorite bridge activity.  I turned back to take a final look at West Palm Beach before heading down onto the island.

West Palm Beach from the Royal Park Bridge.
West Palm Beach from the Royal Park Bridge.

Palm Beach is very dark at night, which made it hard to take pictures, especially on my cell phone.  Most private homes are also hidden behind hedges so capturing the architecture is out of the question.  We passed the Society of the Four Arts as well as its adjacent garden and turned left down Cocoanut Row.

If the air had been crisp and cool (like autumn elsewhere in the United States), our walk could have even been a little spooky!  Even in the humidity and 80 degree temperatures I was able to get a shot of the glowing (and slightly creepy) Flagler Museum.

The Flagler Museum lit up at night... just a wee bit spooky.
The Flagler Museum lit up at night… just a wee bit spooky.

When P and I finally made it back to the car we were completely pooped!  We look forward to trying this route again on a Saturday morning once the weather cools off.  We might even have to stop at the West Palm Beach Greenmarket, which opens for the 2015 – 2016 season on October 3rd.

Happy walking!

xoxo,

E

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