Built in 1927 at a cost of $6,964, the 75 foot long Ritner Creek Covered Bridge alongside OR 223 near Pedee in Polk County, Oregon was the last covered bridge to be located on an Oregon state highway. Ritner Creek Bridge and Ritner Creek were named for pioneer Sebastian Ritner, who arrived in Oregon in 1845. At the time the Ritner Creek Bridge was built, there were about 450 covered bridges in Oregon. The bridge was built by Hamar and Curry, and during Charles Otis Hamar’s career, he was builder or contractor for many Howe Truss covered bridge structures such as the Ritner Creek Bridge, Five Rivers Fisher School Bridge on the Alsea River, Chitwood Bridge on Mary’s River, North Fork Yachats River Bridge and Drift Creek Bridge.
The Ritner Creek Covered Bridge almost became a memory in 1974. Declared structurally unsafe, it was scheduled for removal. The children of Pedee School along with the citizens in the Pedee area rallied to its support with a "Save our Bridge" campaign. The Polk County commissioners met with the state highway department and as a result the issue was placed on the ballot May 28, 1974. The measure passed and the covered bridge was lifted from its foundation and relocated just downstream of its original site to an adjacent site at the new Minnie Ritner Ruiter Wayside in 1976 at the cost of $26,031. The new concrete bridge on OR 223 parallels the Ritner Creek Bridge.
|Plaque inside the bridge that gives a little history of the Ritner Creek Bridge.
|A nice side angle of the bridge.
|The inside of the bridge is quite spacious.
|The modern concrete bridge over the Ritner Creek on OR 223 is next to the covered bridge.
|Side angle view of the bridge.
|Looking inside to the Ritner Creek Bridge.
|View of the bridge from the north side of the creek.
|A nice parting shot of the Ritner Creek Bridge.
How to Get There:
Sources and Links:
Ride With GPS - Western Valley: Ritner Creek Covered Bridge
Ritner Creek Covered Bridge - History of Ritner Creek Bridge
Polk County, Oregon - Ritner Creek Bridge
Oregon.com - Ritner Creek Covered Bridge
Bridgehunter.com - Ritner Creek Covered Bridge 37-27-01