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Lightweight Bridges for the Backcountry

Photo of the cover of the publication, A Guide to Fiber-Reinforced Polymer Trail Bridges.Conventional bridge-building materials, such as steel, concrete, or timber, often are too heavy to carry on trails. "A Guide to Fiber-Reinforced Polymer Trail Bridges" (0623–2824–MTDC) discusses the benefits and problems encountered with the use of lightweight, low-maintenance, fiber-reinforced polymer (FRP) trail bridges.

The guide provides background information about FRP composites, along with their benefits and shortcomings when used for trail bridge construction. Case histories are included for five FRP bridges in national forests, along with tips and hints on design, ordering (suppliers are listed), transportation, storage, installation, inspection, and maintenance.

For additional information about fiber-reinforced polymer trail bridges, contact Scott Groenier, project leader (phone: 406–329–4719; e-mail:

To order the guide, contact Cailen Hegman, Missoula Technology and Development Center (MTDC) publications (phone: 406–329–3978; e-mail:

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