On the Saco River in New Hampshire are two historic covered bridges. In Bartlett Township, located just off US 302 and visible from the highway, the single-span, 166-ft (50.6-m) Bartlett Bridge (1857) uses a Paddleford truss and an arch to cross the river. Its exterior structure is painted red with white trim. Very limited parking is onsite. Closed to traffic, a private, seasonal gift shop now occupies the span. Its presence limits its scenic appeal for photographers. Downriver in Conway, located on Washington Street near NH 113, the red-roofed, sidewalk bearing, two-span, 225-ft (68.6-m) Saco River Bridge (1890) also uses a Paddleford truss and an arch to span the same river. Its exterior structure is mostly beautifully weathered wood. Each portal is painted green with white trim. Plentiful parking is in a nearby riverside park. Excellent bridge views are available there. Open to traffic, the Saco River is one of New Hampshire’s most scenic, accessible, and well-preserved covered bridges. I enjoy seeing it during peak fall foliage and in every other season.
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