Timeline: Jay Cooke State Park Swinging Bridge (Source: DNR)


Forest Service builds the first Swinging Bridge of logs and rope.

1934 and 1935

The Civilian Conservation Corps builds the bridge with the stone pillars existing yet today.


The Swinging Bridge is destroyed in what is now the second-largest flood on record. This flood was recorded at 42,000 cubic feet per second. The smaller pillars were knocked down, the decking destroyed, and some reports indicate one of the main pillars may have been toppled.


Reconstruction is completed and the bridge reopens. Concrete caps seen on top of the pillars today are added to raise the bridge level. The bridge has been raised a total of 7½ feet since originally built.

1970s and 1980s

Bridge undergoes further alterations and repairs.

June 21, 2012

Bridge is destroyed by a 500-year flood reported by Minnesota Power to run at 55,000 cubic feet per second. Again, smaller pillars are knocked down.