The Bridge of No Return was a rope bridge located in the mountains of the Southern Water Tribe. The bridge was said to have once served as a form of punishment for criminals of the South: they would be forced to walk across it and never return. The terrain on the other side of the bridge was the most treacherous in the entire South Pole, making it impossible to survive there.
By 102 AG, the bridge's dark history had become a tale of the past, though it was one that Gilak intended to revive, as he had chosen the bridge as the meeting point for the exchange of Earth King Kuei for Head Chief Hakoda.
Team Avatar and Hakoda followed Gilak's instructions and traveled to the bridge, where they stayed on one side while Gilak and his army on the other. The first to cross were Thod and his disciples, who chi blocked Team Avatar per the terms of the exchange, after which Hakoda and Kuei were sent onto the bridge.
Once the two reached the center, Gilak attempted to cut the bridge but was stopped from doing so by Malina and Toph's three metalbending students. Despite witnessing his army being defeated, Gilak refused to give up and ran on the bridge, torch in hand. As he reached the two heads of state, he vowed to Hakoda that he would win even if it meant sacrificing himself and torched the suspension rope. Malina tried to stop him from causing more damage, and Fire Lord Zuko, who had also run onto the bridge, extinguished the flames. The damage had already been done, however, and with the rope weakened, the bridge could no longer support the weight of the five people and snapped. Despite Toph's efforts to stabilize the bridge with her earthbending, she could not prevent its total collapse.