You wouldn’t normally think of the Pacific Northwest as covered bridge country, but we do have a few here. Southern Oregon is home to a real beauty, and the last covered bridge still standing along old Highway 99. Of course, the rainy Northwest weather and towering conifers gave it away, but otherwise, the place made me feel like I was standing in a Vermont mountain glen.
To continue this week’s bridge theme, let’s head north and check out a couple of Canadian feats of engineering. These two bridges have very little in common with one another—except that they both kind of gave me the heebie-jeebies.
I think the main thing was the sheer distances spanned here, by two relatively skinny structures. In the case of the Confederation Bridge that connects Prince Edward Island to the mainland, the span is eight miles long. That’s comparable to some of the wider stretches of salt water in Washington state, but thanks to the water depth here, you won’t find bridges like that around my neck of the woods. So even though the crossing to PEI took just a few minutes, it felt like traversing a little ocean.
And as for the world’s longest covered bridge? Well, now that was freaky. And creaky. And saggy. And rattly. And…well…long. It took me almost as long to walk across the Hartland Bridge and back as it did to drive the Confederation Bridge—plenty of time to freak out a little bit. (My fear of heights didn’t help, either.)
But you already know I have a major thing for covered bridges. Heck, I’d already crossed the entire province of New Brunswick just to see this one thing. This was definitely not the moment to chicken out.
I have a thing for covered bridges—and thankfully, many other people do, too. That means the communities that possess these relics work hard to preserve them, and I’m grateful that there are still covered bridges for me to sketch. And each one is so wonderfully sketch-able, because they’re all so different.
The Cornish-Winsor Bridge, which straddles the New Hampshire-Vermont border, is one of my all-time favorites. And not just because of the two-dolla fine notice, either (though if any Sleepy Hollow ghouls chase me I’m stayin’ on my hoss). For me, the best part is how absurdly long the span is.
Have you ever crossed a covered bridge? Which one is your favorite?