A Look At The Capilano Suspension Bridge 100+ Years Ago

A Look At The Capilano Suspension Bridge 100+ Years Ago

beautiful places vancouver

Today, it’s one of Vancouver’s biggest tourist attractions. The 450-foot-long bridge offers stunning views of the Capilano River. There are also plenty of trails, a cliff walk and treetop adventures for visitors to explore. Not to mention, they sell some of the best fudge in the Vancouver area.

The Capilano Suspension Bridge was built in 1889 when George Grant Mackay, a civil engineer from Scotland, first arrived in Vancouver.

He purchased 6,000 acres of forest land on either side of the Capilano River and eventually suspended a bridge from one side to the other.

The bridge was made of hemp rope and cedar planks. In 1903, it was replaced by a wire cable bridge.


Capilano Suspension Bridge 1906

The name “Capilano” is a First Nations term and it means “beautiful river,” so it fit well with the area.

Capilano Suspension Bridge 1910

Capilano Suspension Bridge 1910

After Mackay’s death, the suspension bridge was bought by Edward Mahon who worked to improve the structure—adding more cables to it in 1914.

Capilano Suspension Bridge 1915

Capilano Suspension Bridge 1915

The bridge was eventually bought by Henri Aubeneau who heavily promoted the attraction on a global scale. In 1956, he completely re-built the bridge in just 5 days, developed the trails and converted what was once a tea house into the Trading Post Gift Store.


Capilano Suspension Bridge 1970

For more information on the history of the Capilano Suspension Bridge, visit their website.


Featured image via Ruby Huang
Vintage photos via Vancouver Archives

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