PENNSYLVANIA - Covered bridges provide a socially distancing travel option and breathtaking countryside views. Here is our list of 10 must-visits covered bridges in Pennsylvania that will take your breath away!
1. Lower Humbert Covered Bridge
Lower Humbert Covered Bridge is one of the ten remaining covered bridges in Somerset County, situated in Lower Turkeyfoot Township. Constructed with Burr Arch truss construction, it spans Laurel Hill Creek. This stunning 126-foot-6 inch single span Burr Arch truss covered bridge was constructed in 1891 and is now listed on the National Register of Historic Places. Initially, it served to transport people and goods between Lower Turkeyfoot Township and Fort Hill. Nowadays, it serves as a popular sightseeing destination for both residents and visitors alike.
2. Bowmansdale Covered Bridge
Cumberland County still features two iconic covered bridges, Ramp's bridge over Conodoguinet Creek and Bowmansdale Covered Bridge on the campus of Messiah College. The latter is a familiar landmark to students and visitors as it spans Yellow Breeches Creek at the Grantham campus. The second is a more isolated location in wooded surroundings near Newburg. Measuring 130 feet long and built in 1870, this structure can offer some serenity. Recently, the Bowmansdale Bridge underwent a restoration project of three to four months to modernize it. This work included installing a new roof, siding, and finishes for improved aesthetic appeal.
3. Colemanville Covered Bridge
Pennsylvania is unbeatably home to more covered bridges than any other US state, including the iconic Colemanville Covered Bridge over Pequea Creek - Lancaster County's second longest single-span covered bridge and one of its most serene and picturesque attractions. These iconic landmarks are part of Pennsylvania's history and must-visits when visiting the state. This bridge is situated in a rural area with farmland on both sides, making it an ideal stop for road trippers in Pennsylvania. Be mindful that there's only room for one car to pull over, so be aware of any no-trespassing signs.
4. Academia Covered Bridge
The Pomeroy-Academia Covered Bridge in Juniata County is the longest-covered bridge in Pennsylvania, spanning 278 feet across Tuscarora Creek. Constructed in 1902 with two-span timber Burr truss design, the Juniata County Historical Society now owns and maintains this reconstructed two-span timber Burr truss bridge.
Though no longer used as a transportation artery, this iconic landmark in the county remains one of its best examples. After 2009, they underwent refurbishment that made it both beautiful and functional with pedestrian/educational areas featuring art pieces of appropriate size, plus open access for viewing purposes by JCHS students and staff. Visit their website for more details!
5. Hassenplug Covered Bridge
Visiting the historic Hassenplug Covered Bridge is a must for an unforgettable adventure. At 80 feet long and supported by Burr Trusses, it is only months younger than Pennsylvania's oldest bridge and situated close to Mifflinburg. As if the bridge weren't impressive enough, this historic site also features a walking path along Buffalo Creek and an idyllic picnic area to enjoy while taking in its sights.
6. Packsaddle Covered Bridge
Somerset County's Packsaddle Covered Bridge is a must-see if you're partial to covered bridges and waterfalls. This 48-foot Kingpost truss bridge is one of only 10 remaining in PA. This covered bridge is widely regarded as one of the most picturesque in the region, offering stunning views of Brush Creek as it passes underneath. But what really sets this bridge apart is a waterfall running directly beneath it - making it even more special! Take a drive to this bridge, but you may need to use a map for orientation. Additionally, bear in mind that vehicle height and weight restrictions apply here.
7. East and West Paden Covered Bridges
Visits to Columbia County's covered bridges provide a nostalgic journey back in time and offer breathtaking Pennsylvania landscapes. These fiery red bridges stand amidst fields, wooded hollows, and tranquil streams. Pennsylvania boasts more covered bridges than any other region in America, making it a prime destination for both casual travelers and serious photographers. The Covered Bridges of Pennsylvania: A Guide is an invaluable reference book that showcases sixty-seven historic structures.
When visiting Lancaster County, be sure to stop at East and West Paden Covered Bridges -- located north of Bloomsburg and south of the Susquehanna River. They make for a perfect addition to any covered bridge road trip as they are easily accessible from any point within Lancaster County.
8. Sachs Covered Bridge
Sauck's Covered Bridge, also known as Waterworks Covered Bridge, stands 100 feet across Marsh Creek in Cumberland Township, Adams County. Painted its traditional barn-red color, this truss-style bridge spans Marsh Creek for 100 feet across. In 1852, Ithiel Town of Connecticut designed and constructed this lattice truss-covered bridge - one of only a few remaining in the state today. Measuring 100 feet long by 100 feet wide, this iconic landmark is one of Pennsylvania's last remaining lattice truss-covered bridges.
Foot traffic only; this covered bridge spans Marsh Creek. Unfortunately, it was closed to vehicular traffic in 1968 due to the deterioration of its abutments. After being restored in 1988, it reopened once more for foot traffic; however, in 1996 a flash flood nearly washed away the bridge necessitating an additional half million dollars for repairs.
9. Henninger Farm Covered Bridge
Covered bridges are an iconic feature of Pennsylvania's landscape, reminding us of simpler times when life was less hectic, and travel was a little more leisurely. Henninger Farm Covered Bridge was constructed in 1850 across Wiconisco Creek using the Burr arch design style.
In 2000, this building was severely damaged by arsonists and completely rebuilt in 2003. Now owned and maintained by the county, it undergoes regular upkeep for its continued survival.
Henninger Farm Covered Bridge is located northeast of Elizabethville in Washington Township. To reach it, drive 2.2 miles east from Junction Pa. 225 on US 209, turn left onto SR 1006 for 0.7 miles before turning right onto TR 617 to North Road TR 624, and proceed for about half a mile until reaching the bridge.
10. Thomas Mill Covered Bridge
Thomas Mill Covered Bridge, the only remaining covered bridge in Philadelphia and one of few remaining in a major American city is a must-see for visitors to Philadelphia. Tucked away in Wissahickon Gorge of Fairmount Park, this tranquil structure feels far removed from the hustle and bustle of city life.
For those seeking a scenic hike and stunning photo ops, Bell's Mill Road is worth visiting for its parking area and Thomas Mill Covered Bridge. From there, it's just half a mile walk to this charming spot. From here, you have two routes to Thomas Mill Covered Bridge depending on your fitness level: either hike south along Forbidden Drive (a flat multi-use trail) or head north on Orange Trail; both paths will bring you there in about half a mile.