Cedarburg Covered Bridge Park :: One of the Last Covered Bridges

Cedarburg Covered Bridge Park

Once upon a time, more than 40 covered bridges once dotted the Wisconsin countryside. Today the sole survivor is the Cedarburg bridge, once known as the “Red Bridge,” located in Covered Bridge Park three miles north of the City of Cedarburg and 20 miles north of Milwaukee. When guests staying at our Cedarburg boutique hotel ask for recommendations of nearby scenic spots, this bridge is always included in our list of “must sees.”

Cedarburg Covered Bridge Park
Built in 1876, the original bridge measured 120 feet long and 12 feet wide and was constructed with a specific kind of pine logs found near Baraboo, Wisconsin. The logs were cut and milled there, then hauled to a mill on Cedar Creek where all the pieces were fitted and set in place using 3 by 10-inch planks secured by 2-inch hardwood pins without nails or bolts – a type of construction known as Lattice Truss that is hardly ever used today.
All kinds of reasons are given why such bridges were covered … some say it was to shelter travelers in storms, some hint it was a place of refuge from marauding Native Americans, and yet others suggest the reason was purely practical – to prevent horses from seeing and being spooked by the rushing waters of the creek. No matter the reason, Cedarburg Covered Bridge, now in use by walkers, bikers and joggers only, was named a historic treasure in 1965 by the Ozaukee County Historical Society.

Cedarburg Covered Bridge Park

A favorite place for photos, especially weddings and graduations, the park is also a great place to picnic, fish or launch a canoe. To get there, take Washington Avenue north to 5 Corners, go north on Covered Bridge Road, and you’ll find the park on your right.