Not far from Eugene, Oregon, on a quiet back country road roughly in the middle of nowhere, in particular, is the quiet and unassuming Wildcat Creek covered bridge. Nestled among a stand of trees that come into their own in autumn, the setting is stunning, creating the quintessential covered bridge scene.
Wildcat Creek is reasonably tame as creeks go, but it still requires a bridge to cross. In 1925, the 75’ long Wildcat Creek opened, and for a couple of years, was a crucial bridge on the route to the coastline. In the 1930s, however, faster routes were developed, bypassing this bridge, letting it slide into annals of history. Remarkably, it stood the test of time, and today it is on the National Register of Historic Places. In its later years, it has been rehabilitated and strengthened a few times, making sure it will remain with us for a long a time to come. As you walk over the bridge and into history, you can hear the echoes of the past swirling all around you. The rumble and wheeze of the early cars intermix with today’s modern vehicles, yet it all seems to fit together coherently. The deep thud of the ancient timbers feels solid to your feet, yet there is the slightest give, too. And as you stand there, these thoughts and more convey a profound sense of time, place and history.