Shimanek (Thomas Creek) Covered Bridge, Scio, Oregon
Posted by: Groundspeak Premium Member Queens Blessing
N 44° 42.941 W 122° 48.265
10T E 515490 N 4951385
This bridge was built in 1966; it is the 5th covered bridge built at this location.
Waymark Code: WMC5EP
Location: Oregon, United States
Date Posted: 07/27/2011
Published By:Groundspeak Premium Member silverquill
Views: 4


This beautiful covered bridge stands out in many ways: it is Linn County’s longest and newest covered bridge, is the only covered bridge in Oregon that is painted red, it has unusual open-sided sides with rounded portals and louvered windows, the rods in the trusses are grouped in a series of four (unusually there are three at each compressed joint), AND this bridge boasts that it used to have a two-hole toilet built into the foundation! The bridge is painted white on the inside, common to the other covered bridges in Linn County.

The current bridge is believed to be the fifth bridge that was built at this location, starting with a bridge in 1861 (the one with the toilet!), and cost $1,150. The county replaced that bridge in 1904, but it was washed out by a flood in 1921, and was replaced that year. In 1927, another flood damaged the piers, so a new bridge was built. In 1962, during the famous Columbus Day Storm, wind-blown trees caused enough damage, the county was forced to restrict a 2-ton load limit with single lane traffic. The bridge was destroyed soon after, and the county made plans to construct a concrete crossing at the site, but they ran out of money and the project was placed on hold until 1966, when the current Shimanek Bridge was completed, the fifth covered bridge to occupy this site. The current bridge was built in the same style as the 1927 bridge.

In 2002, a Linn County bridge crew had to repair the damage caused by...yes, another flood, this time the Flood of 1996. The crew strengthed the south end of the bridge by replacing the horizontal housing material and then repainted the bridge.

In Feb 2010, Via Magazine (the magazine published by AAA), reported that the Shimanek Bridge had just received a “tune-up”, by adjusting the nuts on each of the tension rods to counteract some sagging, and a face-lift where the asphalt roadway was removed. (reported Martin Harding, the county's bridge supervisor). ( Source: (visit link) )

The bridge sits at the bottom of the hill near the town of Scio, and is named after the Shimanek family who used to farm nearby.

County: Linn
Stream: Thomas Creek
Truss Type: Howe
Length of largest span: 130.9 ft.
Total length: 225.1 ft.
Deck width: 22.0 ft.
Vertical clearance above deck: 14.5 ft.
Year Built: 1966
World Guide Number: 37-22-03
Inventory numbers
OR 12965 (Oregon Dept. of Transportation structure number)
BH 44862 ( ID)
Average daily traffic (as of 2006)

Posted to the National Register of Historic Places
Current Condition of Bridge: Good condition; obsolete for modern traffic

Web Address: [Web Link]

Description of Covered Bridge:
Painted red, with unusual open-sided sides and rounded portals, louvered windows, in the typical truss rod design of Linn County covered bridges, but the rods in the trusses are grouped in a series of four (normally there are three). 13 feet long.

Year Built: 1966

Parking (If not at the bridge):: N 44° 42.970 W 122° 48.256

Location (Road - City - State - Country): Richardson Gap Road

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Recent Visits/Logs:
Date Logged Log User Rating  
ddtfamily visited Shimanek (Thomas Creek) Covered Bridge, Scio, Oregon 06/28/2014 ddtfamily visited it
ornith visited Shimanek (Thomas Creek) Covered Bridge, Scio, Oregon 09/15/2012 ornith visited it
Queens Blessing visited Shimanek (Thomas Creek) Covered Bridge, Scio, Oregon 07/28/2011 Queens Blessing visited it

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