Sunday, October 4, 2015

A Day of Covered bridges and Amish Country

We drove to Ephrata and into the surrounding county today looking for covered bridges.  Lancaster County has 31 covered bridges.  We only went looking for 5.  The Ephrata Cloister was a religious community started in 1732 by German settlers.  It is one of the earliest in our country.
I didn't get a picture, so I borrowed this one.   http://www.ephratacloister.org  is a website with a lot of information.
We spent a lot of time being lost and accidentally finding what we were looking for.  It was an experience.  LOL
This is about as close as we got to finding Amish people.  We saw several buggies on the roads.  The horses are beautiful.
Some of the houses in this area were what I assume were row houses.  Attached and semi-attached.


One small town would run right into another without us barely noticing they had changed names.
But the farmland was large and beautiful.  
Most appeared to be dairy farms.  Someone has to furnish Hershey with milk for all that milk chocolate.


We did see some sheep, but they were all small herds.  They appeared to have been shorn recently.  I bet they were getting a little cool today.
This corn crib or what ever it's called was full of corn.  It looked dried.  I guess it was for feed.  Can you tell I'm a city girl.  Maybe it was popcorn!
 I don't know what was in those dog house looking things.  I saw several of them at farms.  We saw some animals in one of them.  Libbie said it was raccoons.  I said it was rabbits in one and chickens in another.  There is no telling what was in those dog houses.  Each one had a small fence around it.  LOL  I don't think it was fighting roosters.  Could have been I guess.  But the animals I did see weren't roosters.
 Horse and buggy waiting for driver to return.  I wanted to jump in and drive off.  LOL
                                                 Beautiful farms everywhere we went.
 We finally found our first covered bridge.  This one was Pool Forge.  It is 99' long and crosses the Conestoga stream.  This stream must be a long one because it has 6 covered bridges on it.
 You could drive through this one.  We walked thru it first.  It was built in 1859.
 That curved wide piece of wood is called a burr arch truss.  That is the type of bridge it is also.

It is painted in the traditional red but with the ends being red too.  White ends are traditional.
I don't know if this is a homestead or not.  This bridge is on private property now.  It's pretty big if it is a home.
This bridge is now being used as storage like a barn.  This is Red Run Covered bridge and was built in 1865.  It is 107' long.  It was not being given much loving care.
This bright red building was across from the bridge.  Notice the barn (I think that is what it is or was) is bigger than the house behind it.

I know it's just a clothes line.  But these two pictures are the same clothes line.  I couldn't get the whole thing in just one shot!  If you blow the top one up, you can see a pulley on the left hand side.  It is used to bring the laundry in and set it out.  Now that's a long clothes line!
This is the last bridge we found today.  This is Bucher's Mill covered bridge.  This bridge is 64' long and was built in 1892.  This was is traditional red with white ends.  It was originally built in 1891 but was damaged in a flood and was rebuilt in 1892.  It is the second shortest bridge in the county.
Where the others weren't painted on the inside this one was.  It helps you to be able to see that  burr arch truss I was talking about on the first one.
We had picked out 5 bridges to see but we were slow and it was getting dark so 3 is all we found.  But as you can see, they all look alike.  I had to take extra pictures just for reminders so I would know where I was and which bridge was which.  LOL
It was a fun day.