Thursday, March 24, 2011

Covered Bridges of New England


by June Bacher

Though weather-worn, it sits there

In dignity and charm--

The ancient bridge of childhood

That led to Grandpa's farm.

It used to like the rainstorms

And never minded dust;

Somehow though that's different

From aching boards--and rust.

Do you think it remembers

Young lovers' Sunday walk?

The joy of moonlight hayrides--

The laughter and the talk?

Does it recall the wagons

With pumpkin piled sky-high

On the way to market

For sweet November's pie?

Though weather-worn, it sits there,

As if awaiting sound

Of young, impatient hoof-beats

Upon the frozen ground.

A few years ago my husband and I took a drive to Brattleboro, Vermont, something we had done many times. But on this particular day as we drove over the Creamery Covered Bridge I asked him to stop so we could take a closer look at the structure. It was a truly incredible experience and thus began my fascination with covered bridges. Between western Massachusetts, southern Vermont, and southern New Hampshire, there are 9 unique, historic bridges. We’ve put together one or two day self guided tours that include detailed driving directions and a map to each covered bridge, photographs and the history of each bridge, and other notable things to do and see in each location, including places to eat and shop. We also have to loan a copy of New England Covered Bridges: A Complete Guide by Benjamin and June Evans. Here are a few of the covered bridges in our area. Taking a leisurely drive along scenic New England roads is a great way to spend a day.

Day One: Southern NH and SouthernVermont

Sawyers Crossing Covered Bridge

West Swanzey Covered Bridge

Ashuelot Covered Bridge

West Dummerston Covered Bridge

Creamery Covered Bridge

Day Two: Central MA and Western MA

Ware-Hardwick Covered Bridge

Burkeville-Conway Covered Bridge

Bissell Covered Bridge

Arthur A. Smith Covered Bridge