Animal Crossing: New Horizons Vaulting Pole & Bridges Guide – How to Cross Rivers

Great news, villagers! Animal Crossing is back! With Animal Crossing: New Horizons it’s time, once again, to gather materials, build your house, and learn the ins and outs of the game. One of the first things you do is choose the layout of your island. Each time you start a new game, you’re presented with different options. Some may even have islands within the island! But sadly, once you’ve landed you may find you’re unable to cross the rivers. The good news is that it’s only a temporary issue, all you need to do is craft the Vaulting Pole.

How to Cross Rivers in Animal Crossing

As we just mentioned, the first way you can get across small spans of water is with the Vaulting Pole. Later on in the game, however, you’ll be able to place your very own bridges, removing the need to carry around a Vaulting Pole constantly.

How to Get A Vaulting Pole

When you first found your island, you may be in a rush to explore the entire landmass. Sadly, you aren’t allowed to do so just yet.

First off, talk to Tom Nook. He’ll give you a DIY crafting lesson which includes the recipes for the net and fishing rod. You should then use these to catch five bugs or fish and bring them back to him. Afterward he’ll get a call from Blathers.

It turns out Blathers wants to come to the island and it’s up to you to place their tent. Be forewarned, however, that this isn’t a normal tent. This will eventually become the island’s museum.

Now you wait until the next morning when Blathers arrives on the island.

Once he does you can talk to him about opening a proper museum. He’ll ask you to collect fish, bugs, and fossils, but gives you the Vaulting Pole recipe so you can explore more of the island.

To craft it you just need five Softwood which you get but hitting trees with an axe — or completely cutting them down, but hey, be friendly toward your island. To get that, just visit Timmy inside Nook’s tent. He’ll sell you one for 800 bells or you can go ahead and grab the DIY recipe for one. That’ll only set you back around 250 bells, but you will need to gather stone and wood for it. And sure enough, it’s hard to gather wood without an axe to get said wood.

Once you have all of that, head back to Nook’s crafting table and voila, your very own Vaulting Pole!

How to Build Bridges

You’ll have to wait even longer for bridges, sadly. Outside of the first one, you aren’t able to place any more bridges until Tom Nook’s tent has been upgraded into the Resident Services building. Nook will call you and say a bridge needs to be built. This is essentially the tutorial. He gives you a recipe for a Bridge Construction Kit which requires: 4 Log Stakes, 4 Clay, and 4 Stone.

After you’ve completed this, head inside and talk to Nook about the infrastructure of the island. He’ll give you some different options for bridges though they do not come cheap.

  • Log Bridge: 98,000 bells
  • Suspension Bridge: 129,800 bells
  • Wooden Bridge: 168,000 bells
  • Stone Bridge: 168,000 bells
  • Brick Bridge: 198,000 bells
  • Iron Bridge: 228,000 bells
  • Zen Bridge: 228,000 bells
  • Red Zen Bridge: 228,000 bells

Once you’ve chosen a bridge, construction will begin. It will take some time, however. This is a community project, so it’ll appear, but require donations to complete and be functional. Island residents will donate to help move things along, but with numbers these big, you’ll have to do almost all of the lifting.

And that’s it! Hopefully this helps you get settled into your new Animal Crossing: New Horizons island!