Hefbrug climb - July 2003
We were invited for the KRO TV programme "Remarkable Places of the Netherlands". I used this as an incentive to fulfil one of my dreams - to climb the Hefbrug. Angelo and Ben had already been up there and Angelo was the guide.
We park the car and see the bridge looming in the background. We walk the overgrown path towards the bridge. Now my biggest fear is not the height but ticks and Lyme.
For me this climb will be made in memory of Lou Vlasblom. This Rotterdammer climbed the bridge 14 January 1933 and then jumped into the water making two salto's. With his jump of 65 meters he broke the world record of Hans Woldtke (Hamburg, 43 meters) and Steve Hammond (Hudson Bridge, 56 meters).
Access is blocked by a sturdy gate, but Angelo has found a way around the obstacle and soon we ascend the steep stairs to the top. It feels like flying, nothing but emptiness all around you. The stairs vibrate, but they held for almost a century - they will hold now.
On top a refreshing wind blows. We admire the full moon in the South, the White House in the North (once this was the highest skyscraper in Europe) and the other bridges.
The LED wall of the KPN building mimics the full moon in the West. We stand at the top of the right tower, directly under the radar.
Angelo enters the top walkway between the two towers.
With regret we leave our heavenly position and descend the vertiginous stairs.
I take the easy way out. Angelo goes for the difficult exit.

It was one of our most satisfying expeditions.

We cordially thank the team of KRO television for being the incentive for this expedition.

And they deserve special thanks for the use of their pictures.

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Angelo, Petr Kazil

July 2004