Ohio is home to a number of charming covered bridges, each with its own unique history and architectural beauty. These picturesque structures serve as a testament to the region’s rich heritage and offer a glimpse into a bygone era.
Ohio offers natural beauty, vibrant cities, and rolling hills to explore across the state. Visitors come from all over to visit Ohio but particularly to take in some of the most secluded and iconic covered bridges in Ohio. Explore these natural landmarks as part of a bigger trip to the picturesque Hocking Hills region of Ohio.
The 5 Coolest Covered Bridges in Ohio
Rock Mill Covered Bridge
Rock Mill Covered Bridge was built in 1901 by Jacob R ‘Blue Jeans’ Brandt. In 1858 he began working as a building planner in Fairfield County. Rock Mill offers stunning views of the gorge and Hocking River. Brandt is responsible for building other amazing bridges like Mink Hollow Covered Bridge and Hartman No 2 Covered Bridge. His iconic structures have stood the test of time and even at a very short 37 feet long is still mighty bridge not to be missed.
Mink Hollow Covered Bridge
Mink Hollow Covered Bridge was restored to its natural beauty in 1996. Located near an old oil mill in Fairfield County, the bridge runs 51 feet in length and was originally built in 1887 near a beautiful park. Due to its location near Oil Mill Hollow and proximity to Mink Hollow, the bridge earned several names combined into one: “Mink Hollow Bridge Over Arney Run in Oil Mill Hollow Near the Borcher’s Mill.’ The bridge remains mostly known for its current name Mink Hollow and is visited by tourists and revelers who enjoy old covered bridges.
George Hutchins Covered Bridge
The George Hutchins Covered Bridge spans 49 feet in length crossing Lake Loretta. Often photographed in fall (and any other time) for its iconic beauty over the water, the George Hutchins bridge was built in 1904 in Lancaster. Reconstructed from its original spot at Strickler Road, the reconstruction was done for the Fairfield County Bicentennial Celebration in 2000. Featuring Kingpost construction, it is both structurally sound and a beautiful place to visit.
Hartman Number 2 Covered Bridge
Originally, Hartman Number 2 Covered Bridge was constructed in 1888. Disassembled in 1967, the bridge was rebuilt in Lockville Canal Park where it still stands tall and proud today. The red queen post truss bridge is 48 feet long and rests between Ohio and Erie Canal Locks 11 and 12 South in Lockville Canal Park. This is the longest series of intact canal locks in the state of Ohio and is frequently photographed and artists love to paint, draw and sketch it with the natural beauty surrounding this iconic bridge.
Hanaway Covered Bridge
The Hanaway Covered Bridge was built in 1881 by James Buchanan and is the longest covered bridge in the area at 85 feet long. The bridge is constructed on a curve and has a canopy only on one side. Part of Two Glaciers Park in Fairfield County, was created due to increased motorized traffic in the area. High water knocked a tree into the bridge which shifted it off its abutments. Raised and temporarily fixed, a more complete restoration was completed2017. Little used now, it is still a worthwhile visit to see this beautiful old covered bridge.
Exploring Ohio’s covered bridges provides an opportunity to step back in time and appreciate the architectural and historical significance of these structures. Whether you’re a history enthusiast, a photography lover, or simply seeking a peaceful escape in nature, these charming bridges offer a glimpse into Ohio’s past and create a sense of nostalgia that captivates visitors from near and far.
Visiting these Covered Bridges in Ohio
Visiting the covered bridges in Ohio is a delightful experience that allows you to immerse yourself in the region’s rich history and natural beauty. Whether you’re a history enthusiast, a photography lover, or simply seeking a unique outing, exploring these picturesque bridges offers a memorable journey through time. Here’s what you need to know when planning a visit to Ohio’s covered bridges:
- Planning Your Route: Ohio is home to numerous covered bridges scattered across different counties. To make the most of your visit, plan a route that allows you to explore multiple bridges in a single trip. Several websites and travel resources provide maps and information about the various covered bridges, making it easy to plan an itinerary that suits your interests and preferences.
- Learning the History: Before you embark on your covered bridge adventure, take some time to learn about the history and significance of each bridge. Many of these structures have fascinating stories to tell, from their construction techniques to the role they played in the region’s transportation history. Understanding the background of the bridges you visit adds depth to the experience and enhances your appreciation for their cultural and historical importance.
- Enjoying Scenic Surroundings: Ohio’s covered bridges are often located in picturesque settings, surrounded by lush landscapes, rivers, and forests. Take the opportunity to explore the natural beauty that surrounds these bridges. Consider packing a picnic lunch and enjoying it near a bridge, or plan a hike or nature walk in the vicinity to fully appreciate the serenity and beauty of the surroundings.
- Photography Opportunities: Ohio’s covered bridges offer exceptional opportunities for photography enthusiasts. From capturing the rustic charm and intricate details of the bridges themselves to showcasing their scenic locations, you’ll find plenty of subjects to inspire your creative endeavors. Experiment with different angles, lighting, and perspectives to capture the unique essence of each bridge and create memorable images.
- Respecting the Bridges: When visiting covered bridges, it’s important to remember that they are historic structures and, in some cases, still in use. Exercise caution and adhere to any posted rules or restrictions. Take care not to damage or deface the bridges and respect any private property surrounding them. By being mindful and respectful, you help preserve these beautiful landmarks for future generations to enjoy.
Visiting the covered bridges in Ohio offers a captivating journey through history and a chance to appreciate the architectural beauty and rural charm of the region. Whether you’re exploring on your own, embarking on a guided tour, or incorporating them into a broader Ohio travel itinerary, these bridges provide a unique perspective on the state’s heritage and create lasting memories of your time spent in the picturesque Ohio countryside.