July 1 – July 7, 2021 Most Recent Posts:
Moose River Campground Hot Days at Schodack Island State Park
St. Johnsbury Vermont From VA to NY: Schodack Island
Whoo Hoo is right. I’ve been here now for over a week although this post is only going to cover my first 4 days. There has been a lot of rain but still enough time to get out and do things and best of all the temperatures have been fantastic. 50’s at night and in the 70’s during the day. So fine!!
David and I mostly stayed in State Parks, Federal Parks and COE parks rather than private campgrounds. Those places only allow a two week stay. And that’s what I still do most of the time. Lately reservations have gotten pretty difficult – actually they have gotten nearly impossible. So I’m doing something that we did a bit in the past.During summers near Acadia and Great Smokey Mountains National Parks, we would stay for a month or in two cases two months in one place at private campgrounds. This summer I have one month reserved at two different campgrounds in two different sections of the state of Vermont. For July I’m in what the locals call The Northeast Kingdom. I’m staying at Moose River Campground in St. Johnsbury Vermont.
In private campgrounds, the sites are closer together than in nearly all state or federal facilities. You can see that above.
But these sites are all on the Moose River.
How’s this for water front property?
I can sit in my chair and listen to the river and watch the ducks get swept on down. Though they sometimes get out to munch on the grass in the campground.
National Parks have many great nature and environmental programs and hikes. Some state parks do too. Private parks tend to have things like pickle ball, bingo and in this case a weekly ice cream truck. It comes around in a golf cart with music like the good humor man and they give out the ice cream treat of your choice – all free. It’s too funny. Take a look at the video.
There have also been several bonfires since I’ve been here. They blaze brightly and I can see them from my front window into the dark which doesn’t happen until nearly 9pm here.
On Saturday mornings from 9 to 1:00, there is a Farmer’s Market in St. Johnsbury so I drove in to check it out. It was small but there was a nice variety of foods and baked goods, maple syrup of course, cheese and more.
I picked up tomatoes and kale here.
And a coconut macaroon here.
From there I walked over to the Main Street and stopped at the bookstore. Those of you who have been with me a while know that I always stop in libraries and independent book stores. I’m a bibliophile and don’t wish to be cured.
I love that there is no Barnes & Noble or other big box book stores in town or anywhere nearby. They don’t even have chairs in many of them any more.
I took a seat and spent a pleasant 30 minutes or so looking through the Vermont books. I was looking for some on Covered Bridges and Waterfalls.
They had a section devoted to outdoor Vermont and I found a book on Covered Bridges but nothing on waterfalls. Yes I could have gotten it less expensively on Amazon but that wouldn’t help this small town avoid the decline that I saw in the once thriving Castleton-on-Hudson N.Y. Despite what too many people think and say, it isn’t all about money.
Back to the campground for afternoon Bingo. We played 9 rounds at $1.00 a game. If you won, you got half the pot and the other half went to the local animal shelter. Today was my lucky day, I won THREE games which turned out to mean that I paid for all my games and had some money to take home. I like bingo! In the picture I’m the one in the back who looks bleached out by the sun.
At 5:00 the pot luck started and everyone including me ate WAY too much. They had cooked delicious roast beef in huge outdoor cookers all afternoon and we were smelling it during bingo.
Not sure where the rules came from but the owner of the campground said we had to wear gloves and masks in the food line but not at our tables if we didn’t want to. Which no one did.
It rained during bingo and the potluck which didn’t matter since both were under the pavilion. I thought this doggie outfit was a raincoat but then it didn’t make sense if his back was exposed. Anyway I though it was interesting.
I celebrated the 4th of July by going on a tour of 6 covered bridges. Vermont has over 100 but I doubt more than a third of them are within 75 miles of me. I mapped it out so I could go in a circle from one to the other.
The first one was the only Railroad bridge. Fisher Bridge was built in 1908 but is not in use any more. It’s still located in its original spot. You pull off the road into a small parking lot and walk the path up to the bridge.
Pieces of track still lead in and through the bridge. I know it’s tall enough and it might also be wide enough for Winnona to go through.
Looking through and out the end of the bridge.
I drove on to Powerhouse bridge, built in 1872, and was in for a neat surprise.
As you can see, this bridge is still in use. Fine for Ruby but at 8’ 9” tall not so fine for most RVs
The view out the window shows the lovely Gihon River here in Johnson Village Vermont and some very nice cascades out the opposite window.
Once you go through the bridge, there is a pull out where a few cars can park.
I did and found there was a little picnic area.
Further investigation led to these stairs.
And at the bottom. . .
Needless to say I sat down and stayed for a while. I hated to leave but I wasn’t even half way through my bridge tour.
River Road Bridge was built in 1910. It too is still in use.
Ruby and I drive through on our way to Scribner Bridge.
Scribner Bridge is on Rocky Road and boy is it. The road to the bridge turns off in front of a severely neglected house and barn. Such a shame since the view of a covered bridge out your front window would be great. Though the bridge is still in its original location also over the Gihon River, you can no longer drive through it.
The views of the river from in side the bridge are lovely with little eddies right next to the bridge.
This is the view out the opposite side window.
Coming back through the bridge you can see the sad old farm house.
A profusion of beautiful day lilies was in front of the old house.
On I go.
Built in 1881, this bridge is called The Lord’s Creek Bridge but it goes over the Black River. Perhaps that’s because in 1958 Dairy Farmer Joseph Leblond moved the bridge to his farm where he isn’t taking very good care of it. I guess the county or state didn’t value covered bridges back then and if they wanted to build an updated bridge they just wanted to get rid of the old one.
Looking out to the water something moving caught my eye.
Turned out to be a family of Common Mergansers.
They look dark in the above picture. It was great to watch them wheel around in the moving water.
My last bridge for the day was Orne Bridge. It was built in 1879 but destroyed by arson on Halloween 1997 and rebuilt 1999-2000. What a terrible thing. I hope the person responsible was adequately punished. Hung up by his thumbs? Put to work on covered bridge maintenance every week-end for a year. I am glad to know that whoever the powers that be, they valued the bridge enough to rebuild it.
One side of the bridge has large windows and the other does not. I didn’t think to check to see if this was the south side and the one with smaller windows higher up was on the north. That would be smart for protecting in winter and allowing at least some sun in summer.
Ruby and I drove into the bridge from this curve in the road.
This was the view we had coming through. The road is dirt on both sides. See the small windows opposite the large ones.
The view from the bridge of the Black River was lovely. Wildflowers lined the bank.
It was interesting that all the bridges were so different. I have more to see and wonder if I’ll be able to remember these well enough to compare with future ones.
It’s been a great first 4 days in Vermont. But this is the only Moose I’ve seen and he’s in the Campground all the time..
Welcome to Vermont with all its rain.ReplyDelete
Well well, you actually can comment. Try not to be so wordy next time! :-)) See you soon. Vermont knows how to do rain for sure and when to do it to. It hasn't gotten in my way at all.Delete
It looks lovely there! What could be better than being on the water!? I really like your picture looking through the first covered bridge. The ones that are closed- are they unstable? All of the activities and the Farmer's Market look great. A nice way to spend your time and to meet other people. I told you that I looked at the library's newsletter and got some ideas on projects to do with Finn. Nice bookstore. Love the duck and the picture of the thistle. Have fun! xxx000ReplyDelete
It is lovely here Pam. Wish you were here. I was able to walk into or through all the bridges so they are very stable just some are not in use anymore.Delete
I love these bridges. I have only seen one in my lifetime. It was on a trip to Tennessee, but I have no idea where it was. Thank you for sharing! So glad that the weather is better. Enjoy.ReplyDelete
Happy to have you come up and visit Pam and I'll take you to many covered bridges. Next post will have some more in it. I'm glad you like them. Me tooDelete
Vermont has the most beautiful covered bridges. Sure glad you got to enjoy them. Lovely wild flowers!ReplyDelete
The bridges really are lovely Laurie and there are over 100 so I won't get to see nearly all of them.Delete
Love love love covered bridges! Thanks for the tour!ReplyDelete
Glad you liked them Jeannie. Thanks for the comment.Delete
Looks like Vermont is the place to enjoy summer. I love wooden bridges and creeks, looks like a fun place to visit. We are having a very cool summer with lots of lite rain. Very nice except mosquitoes love it also. short camping trips have been our summer enjoyment.ReplyDelete
Vermont really was a good choice for my summer Tom. So glad to be out of the heat. Haven't seen too many mosquitoes I'm sorry they are bothering you.Delete
Wahoo indeed! Lovely, all of it, and winning at bingo and overeating just add to it.ReplyDelete
Thanks Judith. I do love bingo and winning was even more fun for sure. Overeating was fun at the time but not later.Delete
P.S. Is should have said Woo hoo, And also bibliophiles, unite!ReplyDelete
I knew what you meant but didn't know you were a fellow bibliophile. What are you reading at the moment?ReplyDelete
Having just read a very serious, scholarly book by Mary Beard about early Rome, I have re-started Colleen McCulloch's series on the same topic. And I must say, Coleen makes it a lot more fun. She did a prodigious amount of research and had great nerve to even do it, because classics people are really snooty. What are you reading?Delete
I like the moose!ReplyDelete
Me too Rob though I wouldn't mind seeing a real one.Delete
Oh YAY!!! You found cool weather, a site by the creek, a sweet local bookstore, a farmers' market...it looks like the makings of a perfect summer! I'm with you, we always try to buy things locally, even when they cost a bit more. I don't want small local businesses to disappear.ReplyDelete
You and I are definitely birds of a feather Laurel. Thanks for your comment. The cool weather is definitely great. It makes everything else so much nicer.Delete
Living in Sacramento where it's very hot and dry now, and nearly all the greenery has turned an ugly yellowish brown, I love seeing the green in your photos.ReplyDelete
Oh Gypsy it's so good to hear from you and I am so sorry you are out there in all that heat. Keep reading and I will keep posting the green and the water.Delete
The bridges are beautiful.ReplyDelete
Everyone seems to like covered bridges William. I'm not sure what it is about them. I know I'm drawn to them regardless of how well they're taken care of.Delete
Nice digs. I rarely stay in RV parks for long but next to the river is nice. Plus I haven't seen a campfire in quite a while, or a farmers market either. Waterfalls and bridges seems like great road trips from camp and you've started off with some awesome bridges. Glad you're in cooler temps.ReplyDelete
Thanks Gaelyn. The extras are nice but it's the cooler temperatures that brought me here.Delete
Enjoyed your covered brodge tour. Haven't been on a covered bridge tour since we lived in Frederick. Had a bunch of them there and we went as a family to tour them about 10 years ago. Have a Frederick magazine that lists them all and has the history. One of our bridges was torched by an arsonist too and was rebuilt. What is it with these arson creeps?ReplyDelete
What is it with any kind of violence? I just don't get it. I haven't even begun to see the over 100 covered bridges in this state. There is an entire book published about them.Delete
Looks like you hit the jackpot and I don't mean bingo! What a wonderful spot.ReplyDelete
It was a bit of a gamble but it turned out very well. Have to drive to do anything really but the temperatures are great and I love sitting by the river. Wish it were kayakable but can't have everything.ReplyDelete
Great bridges and campground and fun activities too and those temperatures! It's in the 90s here! Beautiful spot to park for a month indeed. xoxoxoxoReplyDelete
It always makes me wonder why someone left a house like that? What were they like? Did they just build a better one? maybe someone bought the land and only wanted that and no need for the house? But you think someone would want to live there, rent? What were the people like? How do you just abandon a great, big house? There must be a story there... Barns are the same, why does someone just one day decide to no longer use the barn?ReplyDelete
I almost missed this great post! So happy to see you've found lovely weather, hope it's still with you. You're lucky to be getting rain too! Your campsite looks great, and has more space than some of the state parks we've seen this summer. And on the water for a month is hard to beat. I love small towns with local bookstores and usually think of you when I visit them :-) That railroad bridge was the first one we saw in Vermont as well, but you found some gems we missed. Driving through them is such a treat. Can't wait to see what else you find in that pretty little state.ReplyDelete
So what size marshmallows are used over that giant campfire? Hopefully the there is enough chocolate to go with them to make Smores. :c)ReplyDelete
The bridges brought back some great memories. When my folks would come for a visit we would go out for overnight trips to different parts of the state to see as many bridges as we could in 2 days. I think we've seen 90 of the bridges, some of which have since been taken out be floods and Hurricane Irene.ReplyDelete