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A boardwalk (alternatively board walk, boarded path, or
promenade An esplanade or promenade is a long, open, level area, usually next to a river or large body of water (Lysefjord) in Norway Norway, officially the Kingdom of Norway,Names in the official and recognised languages: Bokmål Bokmål (, ...

promenade
) is an elevated
footpath A footpath (also pedestrian way, walking trail, nature trail) is a type of thoroughfare that is intended for use only by pedestrians and not other forms of traffic such as Motor vehicle, motorized vehicles, cycles, and horseback, horses. They c ...

footpath
,
walkwayImage:Legaransegget.jpg, left, The Legaran Segget walkway in Johor Bahru, Malaysia. In American English, walkway is a composite or umbrella term for all engineered surfaces or structures which support the use of trails. ''The New Oxford American Di ...

walkway
, or
causeway A causeway is a track, road or railway on the upper point of an embankment Embankment may refer to: Geology and geography * A levee, an artificial bank raised above the immediately surrounding land to redirect or prevent flooding by a river ...

causeway
built with wooden planks that enables pedestrians to cross wet, fragile, or
marsh A marsh is a wetland A wetland is a distinct ecosystem that is flooded by water, either permanently (for years or decades) or seasonally (for weeks or months). Flooding results in oxygen-free (Anoxic waters, anoxic) processes prevailin ...

marsh
y land. They are also in effect a low type of
bridge A bridge is a structure A structure is an arrangement and organization of interrelated elements in a material object or system A system is a group of Interaction, interacting or interrelated elements that act according to a set of rules to ...

bridge
. Such
timber trackway Historic roads (historic trail A trail is usually a path, track or unpaved lane or road. In the United Kingdom and the Republic of Ireland, path or footpath is the preferred term for a walking trail. The term is also applied in North Ame ...
s have existed since at least
Neolithic The Neolithic period is the final division of the Stone Age, with a wide-ranging set of developments that appear to have arisen independently in several parts of the world. It is first seen about 12,000 years ago when the first developments of ...
times. Some wood boardwalks have had sections replaced by concrete and even "a type of recycled plastic that looks like wood."


History

An early example is the
Sweet Track The Sweet Track is an ancient trackway Historic roads (historic trails in USA and Canada) are paths or routes that have historical importance due to their use over a period of time. Examples exist from prehistoric times until the early 20t ...
that
Neolithic The Neolithic period is the final division of the Stone Age, with a wide-ranging set of developments that appear to have arisen independently in several parts of the world. It is first seen about 12,000 years ago when the first developments of ...
people built in the
Somerset levels The Somerset Levels are a and area of , England, running south from the to the . The Somerset Levels have an area of about and are bisected by the ; the areas to the south are drained by the , and the areas to the north by the rivers an ...
, England, around 6000 years ago. This track consisted mainly of planks of
oak An oak is a tree In botany, a tree is a perennial plant with an elongated Plant stem, stem, or trunk (botany), trunk, supporting branches and leaves in most species. In some usages, the definition of a tree may be narrower, including on ...

oak
laid end-to-end, supported by crossed pegs of
ash Ash or ashes are the solid remnants of fire BBQ. Fire is the rapid oxidation of a material in the exothermic chemical process of combustion, releasing heat, light, and various reaction Product (chemistry), products. Fire is hot because the ...
, oak, and
lime Lime refers to: * Lime (fruit), a green citrus fruit * Lime (material), inorganic materials containing calcium, usually calcium oxide or calcium hydroxide * Lime (color), a color between yellow and green Lime may also refer to: Botany * Austra ...
, driven into the underlying peat. The Wittmoor bog trackway is the name given to each of two prehistoric
plank road A plank road is a road A road is a thoroughfare, route, or way on land between two Location (geography), places that has been Pavement (material), paved or otherwise improved to allow travel by foot or by some form of wikt:conveyance, conveyance ...
s, or boardwalks, trackway No. I being discovered in 1898 and trackway No. II in 1904 in the ''Wittmoor''
bog A bog or bogland is a wetland A wetland is a distinct ecosystem that is flooded by water, either permanently (for years or decades) or seasonally (for weeks or months). Flooding results in oxygen-free (Anoxic waters, anoxic) processes pr ...

bog
in northern
Hamburg Hamburg (, ; nds, label=Hamburg German, Low Saxon, Hamborg ), officially the Free and Hanseatic City of Hamburg (german: Freie und Hansestadt Hamburg; nds, label=Low Saxon, Friee un Hansestadt Hamborg),. is the List of cities in Germany by popul ...

Hamburg
, Germany. The trackways date to the 4th and 7th century AD, both linked the eastern and western shores of the formerly inaccessible, swampy bog. A part of the older trackway No. II dating to the period of the
Roman Empire The Roman Empire ( la, Imperium Rōmānum ; grc-gre, Βασιλεία τῶν Ῥωμαίων, Basileía tôn Rhōmaíōn) was the post- period of . As a it included large territorial holdings around the in , , and ruled by . From the t ...

Roman Empire
is on display at the permanent exhibition of the Archaeological Museum Hamburg in Harburg borough, Hamburg.


Duckboards

A duckboard is a type of boardwalk placed over muddy and wet ground. During World War I, duckboards were used to line the bottom of trench warfare, trenches on the Western Front (World War I), Western Front because these were regularly flooded,Imperial War Museum

/ref> and mud and water would lie in the trenches for months on end. The boards helped to keep the soldiers' feet dry and prevent the development of trench foot, caused by prolonged standing in waterlogged conditions. They also allowed for troops' easier movement through the trench systems. Combat troops on nearly all sides routinely wore hobnail-style trench boots that often slipped on the new duck boards when they were wet, and required extra caution. Falling or slipping off the duckboards could often be dangerous, even fatal. Unfortunate soldiers were left struggling to rise under the weight of their equipment in the intractable and sometimes deep water or mud. If this happened at ground level during a tactical advance, the rising soldier could be left a defenseless target for enemy fire as well as hinder forward progress. He could also simply go unnoticed in the ensuing melee, and easily drown under his heavy equipment.


Gallery

File:A wooden walkway through the lake.jpg, A wooden boardwalk allows passage through a lake, such as this one in Plitvice Lakes National Park, Croatia. File:HoriconMarshBoardwalk.jpg, This boardwalk allows people to cross Horicon Marsh. File:Lambi boardwalk.jpg, Boardwalk to the Lambi Beach on the Greece, Greek island of Kos File:Pyhä-Luosto National Park.jpg, Boardwalks help walkers navigate difficult terrain as at Pyhä-Luosto National Park in Lapland (Finland), Lapland, Finland. File:Mukri raba matkarada.jpg, A boardwalk enables those on foot to cross a bog in Estonia. File:17 31 028 ocmulgee.jpg, Boardwalk at Ocmulgee National Monument File:Boardwalk in the grass (Unsplash).jpg, Boardwalk surrounded by tall grass File:Rain Forest in KLIA.jpg, KLIA Airport Boardwalk


See also


References

{{Reflist Hiking Footpaths Footbridges Garden features Pedestrian infrastructure Road infrastructure