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Follow along with Doris & Marc as they tour some of Oregon's beautiful Covered Bridges.

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After visiting the Oregon coast on several day trips, (as you may have already seen on our home page), Marc & I wanted to explore other parts of the state, especially Crater Lake National Park.  Our challenge was to devise a memorable tour within a reasonable budget. Our ultimate decision was to make a four-day trip into a mini-vacation. We believe, as our best friend John Franich does, that camping is hotel accommodations without room service. So within these guidelines we planned ahead and booked three nights in reasonably priced motels.  Packing a cooler to take care of our basic needs, we hit the road early on Saturday morning. The Green Hornet gets a much deserved rest.Part of our plan was to include continental breakfast at our lodging as part of our travel expenses, limiting ourselves to one meal out in the evening.  We have learned through trial and error to pack our own coffee and all the fixings as most hotels provide a coffee maker, but little else. Also, bringing your own coffee travel mugs will insure frequent free refills during your trip. We  left Des Moines, WA at 6:00am on a cloudy & cool morning, and traveled down I-5 southbound targeting Cottage Grove, OR as our first stopover. We bypassed Portland taking I-205 and arrived in Central Oregon in plenty of time to visit a handful of covered bridges before check-in time at our hotel. Armed with brochures and chamber of commerce information regarding the covered bridges of Oregon, we began our "treasure hunt" in MarionGallon House Covered Bridge, oldest covered bridge in Oregon. County searching for the Gallon House covered bridge, Video of a walk across the Gallon House Bridge. near the township of Mt. Angel. Having only a sketchy idea of where this bridge was located, we were rescued by the manager of the local NAPA auto parts store who drew us a very interesting map which got us there within ten minutes (Driving directions). (Not bad for never having been in the area before.) The Gallon House Bridge is the oldest covered bridge in Oregon. It was named during the days when liquor was sold by the gallon or quart in a nearby house. The bridge was rebuilt in 1990. From here we retraced our steps to I-5 and headed south (Driving Directions) in search of the Parvin Covered Bridge in Dexter, OR. The Green Hornet uses the Parvin Bridge to cross Lost Creek.J Video of a walk across the Parvin Covered Bridge The Parvin Bridge spans Lost Creek. It is 75 feet in length, built in 1921, and is open to automobile traffic. Named for a pioneer family, the Parvin Bridge replaced an earlier roofed bridge erected in the 1880's. It was restored in 1986. Next we headed off in search of the Lowell Bridge the widest of all the covered bridges. It is also the only known instance of a covered bridge over a reservoir. To get there from the Parvin Bridge we got back onto State Route 58 heading east. (Driving Directions) Lowell Bridge-only known covered bridge over a reservoir located near Dexter, Oregon. This bridge replaced a 1907 covered span. It crosses the middle fork of the Willamette River and is 165 feet long. It was built in 1945 and is 24 feet wide. This bridge handled heavy logging truck traffic until it was closed to all traffic crossing in 1981. We continued across the reservoir, heading north, looking for the Unity Bridge. Video of a walk across Unity Bridge Taking the Jasper Lowell Road for 2 1/2 miles we arrived at our destination. The Unity Bridge features a full-length window on the upstream side. The bridge crosses Fall Creek, is 90 feet long, was built in 1936 and is open to Video of Unity Bridge automobile crossing.  At this point we decided to call it a day and head down to Cottage Grove and check into our motel for the night. As we passed through Lowell this little guy caught our eye and we just had to take his picture. We are sure that this is by far the smallest covered bridge in Oregon. It is only open to pedestrian traffic as it is on a sidewalk. Miniature covered bridge in Lowell, Oregon.Too funny. We reached the Comfort Inn in Cottage Grove after only a short time on the road, checked in around 5:00pm and had time to go swimming in the pool before sunset. After a good night's rest, we started out the next morning with a quick continental breakfast supplied by the Comfort Inn & began our search for the 5 covered bridges located in Cottage Grove. The Centennial Bridge was the first bridge we visited & being located in the downtown Cottage Grove area proved very easy to find. Cottage Grove has taken the time to provide directionalCovered pedestrian foot bridge named Centennial Bridge, over the coast fork of the Willamette River in Cottage Grove, OR signs for an easy to follow self-tour. This bridge is 84 feet long & was built in 1987 & is open to pedestrian crossing only, it was completed for Cottage Grove's 100th anniversary. Video of Cottage Grove's Centennial Bridge On this sunny day, temperatures in the 60's with clear skies and only a calm breeze, Chambers Railroad Bridge over the Willamette River, Lane County, ORwe traveled further on to the Chambers Railroad Bridge. This rustic structure was used by trains to bring in logs to a local mill. The trains stopped running in 1943 when the mill burned. Video of Chambers Railroad Bridge Our next stop was the Currin Bridge over the Row River.Currin Bridge, over the Row River in Lane County, OR It was built in 1925, it's 105 feet long and is open to pedestrian crossing.  Video of Currin Bridge Closed to crossing in 1979, this bridge was restored in 1995. Off to find Lane County's oldest covered bridge, we set our sights on Mosby Creek. Mosby Creek Bridge, built in 1920, Lane County, OR.In 1990 it was restored to handle heavier crossing, it is 90 feet long and was built in 1920. The last bridge we visited in the Cottage Grove area was the Stewart Bridge which was built in 1930. It is 60 feet long & in 1987 restoration allowed pedestrian & bicycle crossing. Stewart Bridge, pedestrians & bicycles only.The bridge was by-passed in the 1980's by a concrete bridge. Steps lead down to the Mosby Creek below for fishing & swimming. Before we take you along on the next leg of our adventure, we would like to include our visit to Short Bridge, which we  discovered the following day. Here are the details; the Short Bridge crosses the South Santiam River, Short Bridge, over South Fork of the Santiam River, was built in 1945 & is 105 feet long. Named for a local resident, the Short Bridge is the sole survivor of the covered bridges which crossed the South Fork of the Santiam River. Visitors to this bridge quite often see deer and other animals nearby. Our Adventure to Crater Lake National Park is next...