The covered bridges of Northfield VT
I drove many times up Route 12 in Vermont. I even stopped in at my Dads alma mater, Norwich University. I took him there once, so he could look over the parade grounds that he walked as a young man and the buildings he stayed in after he was released from active duty in World War II. I never knew then, that within a few miles were 4 covered bridges and a little bit further (on 12A) was a 5th.
It’s not like these are new, they were there almost as long as the university ( or about 196 years +/-) so why do we not find them daily? First, most covered bridges are located on “old” main roads that the locals don’t use as much for the most part and they have been circumvented by wider and straighter roads. “Progress”?
Lisa and I were traveling on Route 12 through Northfield (passing Norwich) and she opened the Vermont Gazetteer and she says, “There’s a covered bridge nearby”. (I love my wife) 🙂 That brought us to the first covered bridge this day, the Slaughterhouse covered bridge.
One of the first things I noticed with the Slaughterhouse (besides its name) is the fact that its red. I came to find out that all of the Northfield 5 (as I’ve come to call them) are red covered bridges. 🙂
The Slaughterhouse bridge was built so people could get across the Cox brook to the… (what else) the local slaughter house. People were not creative when naming their covered bridges. The Creamery Bridge, yup next the local creamery. 🙂 Good thing there wasn’t one next to a liquid waste plant… Ewww… 🙂
That led to finding the other 4. (there is also a private owned #6 but I don’t like photographing covered bridges on private land)
The first three are the Upper Cox, the Station and the lower falls covered bridges.
The Station and the Lower falls covered bridges
These two bridges are about 300′ apart and they are unique in that these are the only two that if you stand inside one and look out the open end, you see the other.
The first one is the Station covered bridge which runs over the Dog river and the second one stands astride the Cox brook.
You should take care, approaching the lower fall bridge, as it’s a narrow one and only one vehicle at a time can pass through. Waiting for the oncoming cars is the polite practice.
The Third covered bridge on this short stretch of road is the Upper Falls covered bridge.
After superstorm Sandy, the sides of the Upper Cox bridge were nearly taken off by the flow of the water. This covered bridge actually has panels that open up to let the water flow through. There are several angles to photograph this one.
It was pointed out to me that by driving through it and parking on the other side, will allow you to get a nice water view WITH reflection!
You should have boots for this because sneakers may get waterlogged. It all depends on how recent the rains have been. Anyway, just pass through it and pull over and cross the road… Here’s a riddle??? Why did the Leaf Peeper cross the road?… To photograph a wonderful autumn reflection! At least that is why I did…
The Stony Brook covered bridge
This is another of those bridge where folks must have changed their minds over the years. This is also the Moseley covered bridge. To get here all depends on where you are coming from. Assuming you just left the Station covered bridge (up above) then you would come out on Route 12 and head past Norwich University. Then you take the right turn onto Route 12A and then take the immediate left branch at the fork.
If you see a fork laying on the road, hold onto it for me, I lost it… Ok I lost it years ago but that is another story…
When approaching a covered bridge do not travel too fast! or you might damage your car (if the bridge is narrow) or more importantly you might damage the bridge. View this video I made on how to slow down just prior to entering a covered bridge.
If you think you might be interested in purchasing one of my covered bridge images from this article or one of my many others. Please visit Vistaphotography, my Fine Art Gallery website. It’s brand new and could use some visits… (It’s lonely)
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I live in Salem, Massachusetts and work as a blogger and Travel Photographer. I'm also the founder of the New England Photography Guild.
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I started with Yankee Magazine as their first blogger on everything fall foliage. Now I blog on my own blog on my favorite subject, telling leaf peepers where the fall foliage is showing up in New England and helping them (to some extent) plan their fall foliage vacations.