Power line heroes

We count our adapters as we count our blessings. You can hardly say that electricity has got nothing to do with you.

I confessed to you already: I’m a power line nerd.

As much as I enjoy the graceful steel structures, there was one thing that puzzled me: How do you raise such structures in the first place, and how do you maintain them? I never saw anyone working on them. Did you?

This made the power system even more mysterious to me. As if you drink milk every day but never see a cow.

Until that one day. Yes, I did spot some workers up there! If I had looked down, I’m sure I had seen a few cows on the field beneath the electricity acrobats.

Eager to learn more about maintenance, I found some videos that I want to share with you. Pick one or all, depending on what perspective you want.

1. Do you want to look back?
For the historical perspective, start with this one. The first four minutes show how power towers were built in the past, with horses pulling wooden poles in the snow and swift hand manouvers by the workers. Somewhere, once upon a time, in a Swedish forest.


2. Do you want to look down?
See this video for a view from the top. A bit shaky, just as I guess it is up there. Hold on, you’re on the job!


3. Do you want a look behind the scenes?
This is a documentary about dangerous professions. This is the first part of three of Half Million Volt Workers. Meet a team of linemen who risk their lives and love their job, because (as one of them say) “look what I get to ride to work, it’s like being on a Harley with wings“.


4. Or do you go for the slightly more poetic and philosophical look?
about the magic carpet… because… there is such a hunger for electricity these days…


If you have anything to share about this post or about electricity or power lines in general (observations, facts, videos, poetry, art work, anything) the comment field is all yours!

13 thoughts on “Power line heroes

  1. Though I don’t have your fascination – and I think it’s an interesting one! – I do think power lines slice the sky in compelling ways, and rather than fret about them, a landscape photographer can enjoy and use them. When I sit at a stoplight in a city, I look up and sometimes snap them with my phone – along with little slices of buildings or cotton clouds, they make great compositions.

    • So we do share that “eye”, to see them as compositions. My own fascination has at times been bordering to “obsession” (especially about taking photos), but it’s also nice how the powerlines that I see outside the window when I take the train to work have become totally a part of the journey.
      Thanks for your comment, I love the “little slices of buildings or cotton clouds”!

  2. The last video is my favourite – I know someone who works on power lines, and did not realize what was actually involved in this job. Incredible! Thank you for doing all this research.

  3. Gunilla, love the new layout of your blog – excellent choice of theme. This is a really funny post … love the videos you have added. Amazing images, I have never seen workers in that amount in one go. So glad those guys dare to go up there. Here now most power lines are underground, because of all the problems they had with heavy winters and power cuts.Now we don’t have any more heavy winters, got some today … nice.

    • I’m glad you enjoyed the videos. I thought, we just take electricity for granted, but someone has to maintain it, too. I see lots of powerlines from the train, to work, love it!
      Funny, I have the same theme as always, but perhaps you came in via the homepage this time, with the mosaique of images, and normally you would enter via a post (?). I’ve never liked the blue titles much and plan to upgrade to be able to change colours, but never get around to it. one of these days. “Det är en världslig sak”, eller hur? 😉

    • I have always loved them, but really have no idea why. I just find them gorgeously beautiful. Heavy steel in light structures. I have loads of photos that I’ve taken from the car the past few years, now I try to just watch.

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