Deception Pass Bridge


After decades of lobbying from locals, a steel bridge was finally constructed in one year between August 1934 and July 1935, to join Whidbey Island to Fidalgo Island which was already connected to the mainland of Washington. The construction of the bridge was ambitious during the Great Depression but for the cost of $420,000, what became the Deception Pass Bridge was built with much of the physical work done by unemployed locals (apparently these days it costs more to paint the bridge than it did to build it!).

Deception Pass Bridge joins Whidbey and Fidalgo Islands in Washington state
Deception Pass Bridge joins Whidbey and Fidalgo Islands in Washington state

Today the Deception Pass Bridge stands as not only a major thoroughfare (around 15,000 vehicles go over it a day) but also a famous landmark and tourist attraction. Walk across its main 297.5 metre / 976 feet span and enjoy the glorious views from 55 metres / 180 feet above Deception Pass and the state park that surrounds it (there is also the shorter Canoe Pass span which is 156 metres / 511 feet long given the bridge a total length of 453 metres / 1,487 feet ).

Deception Pass Bridge
Deception Pass Bridge
Deception Pass Bridge Whidbey Island Washington
The view of Deception Pass from bridge

Deception Pass itself was named in 1792 by Joseph Whidbey, a famous Navigator of the Royal Navy who was on the Vancouver Expedition of 1791 to 1795 that circumnavigated the globe. He named it such as the Spanish had previously had previously charted it as a bay, not the channel running between the Islands that it actually was, hence it was a “deception”. Captain George Vancouver naturally named the island after Whidbey.

Deception Pass Bridge Whidbey Island Washington
The bride construction is quite fascinating to take a close look at
Deception Pass Bridge was constructed between 1934 and 1935
Deception Pass Bridge was constructed between 1934 and 1935
Deception Pass Bridge was constructed between 1934 and 1935
Intricate construction and wonderful views
Deception Pass Bridge joins Whidbey and Fidalgo Islands in Washington state
From colour, to B&W to sepia the bridge still looks good

If you have time I recommend going down to the beaches in Deception Pass State Park for more great views of the bridge and the surrounding scenery. A really nice place to visit.

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