The approach to the Eshima Ohashi bridge may greet drivers with a sense of trepidation. From afar, the almost vertical climb and descent are of rollercoaster proportions.
Construction on the Eshima Ohashi bridge to connect two cities on opposite sides of Nakaumi Lake started in 1997. Architects made sure ships could still pass under it, which explains why it’s so tall.
The bridge is about a mile wide and at 44 meters tall, one of the highest in its class of bridge in the world, with a rigid frame structure. The view from either end of the bridge amplifies the actual incline, hence the rollercoaster nickname. It looks terrifyingly high.
The bridge is still pretty steep though, with a gradient of 5.1 percent on the Tottori Prefecture side and 6.1 percent on the Shimane Prefecture side.
The bridge connects two cities, Matsue and Sakaiminato. Lake Nakaumi is one of the largest lakes in Japan and contains brackish water; saltier than fresh water. Building works finished on Eshima Ohashi in 2004.