"PONCA - The old concrete low water bridge crossing the upper reaches of the Buffalo National River may connect the river's past with its future for many more years. That is what local and state officials and at least one U.S. congressman set out to accomplish last Thursday morning, Oct. 26, here.
The bridge, erected long before the Buffalo was declared a National River in the 1970s and was allowed to remain in place after a new elevated highway bridge was built around 1983, has continued to serve the community as a canoe launch, swimming and fishing hole, baptismal pool and a safe means of accessing hiking trails on the other side of the river.
Although park service officials say the removal of the bridge is not a priority, it has long been on the agency's list for demolition.
State Rep. Roy Ragland of Marshall, after hearing complaints from his District 90 constituents about park service policies limiting access to the river, contacted members of the state's delegation to Washington, D.C., and brought the concerns to their attention.....
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