It has been unusually hot here in Vermont. I know it is August but I wasn’t expecting 88 degrees here. It felt like 98.
I’ve been looking for a shuttle to enable me to kayak the Battenkill River since I arrived and found that I cannot put in here at the campground as I was hoping. The river is too low here.
I found a place called Vermont River Runners but not much information on them other than an address which said they were not too far from here down route 313 which runs along the Battenkill River into New York. On my way there, I drove by the Arlington Covered Bridge near the former home of Norman Rockwell that I talked about earlier. It has a put in but the problem is how to get back.
Eaglesville Covered Bridge
When I entered New York I finally gave up on finding the River Runners. I knew there were four covered bridges in New York relatively near by and, though I struggled with an intermittent phone signal for google maps, I was able to locate two of them.
The Eagleville Covered Bridge was great! Though it was a Wednesday, lots of people were jumping into the river from the bridge’s pilings and a rope swing. I assume these were local folks who know all about this.
The Eaglesville Bridge was built by Ephraim W. Clapp in 1858 and was listed on the National Register of Historic Places in March of 1978. It is a single span Towne Truss design of 100 feet over the Battenkill River. It is owned and maintained by the county
In March of 1977, just prior to its registry, high water on the Battenkill undermined the east abutment dropping the bridge into the river. Somehow a county bridge crew diverted the river and saved the bridge. Apparently it took quite a twist when it went down but Towne Lattice Trust proved to be flexible and resilient. It was repaired and over the years has been resided, reroofed and repainted a number of times. The last rehabilitation was 2006-2007. Hats off to the county for such dedication.
On both sides of the bridge kids were having a grand time as you can see.
What great memories they are making. Wish I’d had something like this for hot summer days. Did you?
Despite my internet mapping troubles, I managed to find a second bridge only 2.2 miles away but it was “closed”. It is owned not by the county but by the town of Shushan where it is located right next to the regular bridge which replaced it. It is not in nearly as good repair as the Eaglesville owned by the county. The sign on the bridge made me laugh. I assume that was original sign and the original spelling from 1858. It is now a museum of farm tools donated by the town’s people. From these pictures it is difficult to tell how long it is.
On the left side of the bridge it says Hours 1-4 Season. I later read it is not open on Monday but I was here on a Wednesday during those hours and it was closed up tight. You’d think August would be the season. I really would like to have gone inside given its length.
The 2012 picture below was borrowed from nycoveredbridges.org and shows the length. It really is LONG.
The bridge was originally built by Milton & James Stevens also in 1858. It too was listed on the National Historic Register in 1978. It also crosses the Battenkill and is a 161 foot long two span structure of the Towne Lattice Truss design.
Across from the bridge was Salem District # 6 School house now a also a museum, also closed.
I thought since I’d fallen unintentionally into visiting New York area covered bridges I would go on and see the other two here in Washington County but my internet/mapping wouldn’t cooperate. I had their names but no directions. I later learned that they were 4 miles and 12 miles away from Shushan. There are a total of 5 covered bridges within 24 miles west of the campground and 4 others south near Bennington. Truly a great area for covered bridges. Today I’d inadvertently gone by 3 of them and was sorry to have to turn back without seeing the other two.
Another example of an unexpected afternoon excursion in Vermont.