THE WORLD’S LONGEST VIKING BRIDGE
The world’s longest viking bridge is finally finished. It took 3 years of construction by more than 1000 people.
It is just opening now in a rare archaeological viking valley at Albertslund, 15 minutes from the Danish capital, Copenhagen.
The bridge in more than 700 meter long crossing a valley with viking cemeteries, protected species of birds, reptiles, bats, amphibians and plants including orchids.
It is an area known for people living as vikings.
More than 1000 school-children, craftsmen and volunteers have helped building the viking bridge.
The viking bridge is construction with the same tools and engineering methods, as the viking use. The hope is to learn about details about the tools, cloth and for instance how they got the huge pillars lowed into the grown.
Some of the oak pillows are more than 6 meter/19 feet long.
The valley is an unique area with more than 5.500 archaeological findings from the Viking age.
A viking cemetery with 48 graves was found in 2006. One of the skeleton found got the biggest hand ever found in the world – a huge viking hand from around year 900.
The inaugurated turned into a Viking feast, where everybody was all-in Vikings.
The final two final pillars was carried in processions. The last stitch was knocked in by the unique director of the national museum Rane Willerslev, that also has lived as a viking and other tribes in the world.
Thousands of people turned up and the all in participating vikings grilling animals, played music, games, eating, drinking and celebrating together as all-in vikings.
The bridge connects a viking museum with all the findings and a viking village, where every house also is made like the vikings made it.
Head of the museums craftsmen Thomas Aabye has axed and formed more than 100 original oak trees into long pillars for the viking bridge, that all are 30x 30 cm or 1×1 feet.
He learned how the vikings made the oak tree a little wet, so it is easier to axe.
The bridge was originally build a 1000 years ago by the Viking King Harald Bluetooth (958-987). It was used to transport the viking boats to surprise attack the enemy.
Historically Harald Bluetooth wanted to surprise the German Otto the Great, that aimed to turn around the viking to Christianity in North Europe, and gain the power.
Even though Harald Bluetoth was winning viking wars in Norway, Germany, Sweden and Polen, aswell as the Baltic countries, he was actually finally beaten by Otto the Great, which is said made Denmark a christian country.
Many of the famous old churches and other construction in Denmark originates from that time.
Some of the things, that the experts are learning from the construction are, what was the wear and tear of the viking tools? What is the right viking cloth? How long time would it take to build per man? What materials like peat and stone are used around the pillars?
The level of engineering was very high in the viking times, which several findings later has proven and has re-improved building and boat construction today.
In the end 75% of the construction was made with viking tools and 25 % with modern tools, like a chain saw.
The area is opened all year for free.