Hillsborough

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Like Swanzey, Hillsborough is a town I have visited many times for its unique bridges but in Hillsborough it is the collection of stone arch bridges that draws me there. At one time there were almost a dozen of these stone arch bridges in Hillsborough, today 4 of them are still in use. The Hillsborough Historical Society has some great information about the building of the bridges and also an awesome collection of old photos of the bridges. They have a very easy to follow set of directions that will take you to all 5 of the remaining bridges.

 

Sawyer Bridge is now a park. It is the only remaining bridge that is no longer used.

Sawyer Bridge is now a park. It is the only remaining bridge that is no longer used. Photo taken in 2011

 

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Near the intersection of 2nd NH Turnpike and Barden Hill Road 2011

 

2011

2011

 

Near the intersection of Saw Mill Road and West Main Street 2011

Near the intersection of Saw Mill Road and West Main Street 2011

 

The view from the bridge

The view from the bridge

 

 

Beard Road

Beard Road

 

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Further along on Beard Road

Further along on Beard Road

 

From the other side of the bridge

From the other side of the bridge

 

Beard Brook

Beard Brook

 

Fun at the swimming hole just below the bridge 2011

Fun at the swimming hole just below the bridge at Gleason Falls 2011

 

Gleason Falls Road

Gleason Falls Road

 

One of the things that makes this bridge so unique is the fact that the radius of the spans is different…

 

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The view from the bridge

 

Before I left for the day, I consulted an online map of Hillsborough to try and decide what else I might want to see while I was there. I saw a marker for Gleason Falls. I didn’t zoom in enough on the map to get a good fix on the location, thinking that I would be able to find it easily enough. I thought that once I turned on to Gleason Falls Road, that I’d come across it. About  2/10 of a mile down the road, my GPS showed that I was no longer on a road (although I clearly was still on a traveled, but dirt, road) I drove nearly to the end of the road without seeing any signs of the falls. I was almost to Rt. 31 so I turned around, heading back towards Beard Road. I stopped, thinking I could look up the falls on my phone and find their exact location. Sure enough, I found a website with the exact coordinates for the falls.  I happily plugged the coordinates into my GPS, sure that I must be very close. My GPS informed me that I needed to make a U-turn , hmmm, I just came from that direction and hadn’t seen anything. So following my GPS’s directions of “Make a U-turn” I turned around (again) and headed back towards Rt.31. Once I got to Rt. 31 the GPS instructed me to take a left, again, hmmm, this doesn’t sound right…but I followed the voice of the GPS. It had me take another left, this time onto Beard Road, wait a minute…I was just on this road a little while ago. A few miles up the road, it had me take, you guessed it! A left onto Gleason Falls Road. When I got to the stone arch bridge, the GPS announced that I had reached my destination. Nope, no falls here, a beautiful bridge, but no falls. I was a bit miffed at the GPS for not knowing that the road went all the way from Beard Road to Rt. 31 and a bit miffed at the website that gave me bogus coordinates. It just goes to show that you can’t always trust your GPS or the internet. What I learned when I got home and sat down to write this post is that I had been at Gleason Falls, they are at the second stone arch bridge on Beard Road. It is where I had taken the picture of the boys jumping into the swimming hole! Anyhow, I did find a few other places to stop on my “around the block” tour of Gleason Falls Road…

 

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There is a sixth stone arch bridge in Hillsborough, but it is under the waters of Franklin Pierce Lake…

 

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The wind was whipping up the snow.

The wind was whipping up the snow.

 

Any of you that have been following me for a while know that I also like farms. Hillsborough offers some beautiful farms!

 

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It was so cold the day that I was in Hillsborough, even some of the cows were blue…

 

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I have driven by this barn literally hundreds of times and it wasn’t until this day that I noticed the blue cow. When you just get in your vehicle and drive around a town, you never know what you’ll see! That is part of the fun of what I am doing, but sometimes what you come across just makes you stop and laugh or scratch you head…

 

I would say that a LOT of fun has been had here!

I would say that a LOT of fun has been had here!

 

Yep, was laughing out loud when I saw this!

Yep, was laughing out loud when I saw this!

 

There are plenty of old mill buildings in Hillsborough…

 

Built in 1888

Built in 1888

 

I'm not sure what this small building was for, but it is across the street from one of the mill buildings

I’m not sure what this small building was for, but it is across the street from one of the mill buildings

 

The railroad was also clearly important to Hillsborough…

 

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Because it is hunting season here in NH, I opted not to take any long walks in the woods on this visit, but there are quite a few great places to hike in Hillsborough, including Fox Forest and the Farrar Marsh…

 

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I did get out and stretch near this sign…

 

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There are plenty of other sights in Hillsborough. I’ve never eaten anything from German John’s Bakery, but I have heard it is excellent…

 

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12 Comments on “Hillsborough”

  1. marthaschaefer November 25, 2013 at 3:01 pm #

    You found some really beautiful bridges. I think they are my second favorite to covered bridges. The cow shots are also great. Hillsborough is one of those places I have driven through but not yet taken the time to explore. Thanks for the excellent tour!

    • Touring NH November 25, 2013 at 3:55 pm #

      Hillsborough is a great place to explore! I’ve always loved stone arch bridges. It amazes me that they have stood for over 200 years and how they were constructed is amazing to me.

  2. New Hampshire Garden Solutions November 26, 2013 at 1:26 am #

    I’m glad that they’re taking care of these bridges. It would be a real shame to lose them after so long. That blue cow is a trip!

    • Touring NH November 26, 2013 at 10:34 am #

      I think it is a testament to the builders of these antique bridges, 200 years ago they built a bridge that lasted, well, 200 years and counting. Yet today we build bridges with a life expectancy of 50-60 years…progress?

  3. Susan Cline November 26, 2013 at 2:18 am #

    Where was the barn 5351 shot taken? Would love to go up in the snow and get this shot sometime this winter…thanks…love your work!

    • Touring NH November 26, 2013 at 10:51 am #

      Hi Susan,
      Thank you. That barn is on Bear Hill Road. There are a total of 7 beautiful farms on that road and the view from the top of the hill is spectacular!

      • Susan Cline November 27, 2013 at 2:55 am #

        Why, thank you so much…very nice of you to share…looking forward to a nice drive up in that area when it snows (which it did, for a brief time, down here in Ashby, MA, today.) Farms and barns are just about my favorite thing to see/photograph….

      • Touring NH November 27, 2013 at 9:52 am #

        I’m more than happy to share! It makes me happy to have shown you someplace and made you want to visit! If you’d like, email me before you think you might head up and maybe I can tell you in advance where some other nice farms and barns are. Happy photographing!!

      • Susan Cline November 27, 2013 at 12:04 pm #

        You have a very generous spirit! I appreciate your willingness to share…actually, if you have time, send me that information…I may be taking a photodrive in the very near future…definitely want to get farms and barns in that area during December to see if any have wreaths or other Christmas decorations, and of course, barns/farms in the snow and horses in their blankets! Aren’t we blessed to live in New England? Happy Thanksgiving to you!

      • Touring NH December 4, 2013 at 8:42 pm #

        Sorry it took me so long to get back to you. I went through some of the older blogs and Marlborough, NH has a lot of gorgeous old barn, some bright red, some with silos…and nearby Troy also has some great barns. If you go back to some of the older post, I have maps showing where the barns and other things are. If you get as far as Temple, NH be sure to take a side trip to Touchstone Farm, lovely barns, riding arenas and winter blanketed horses. They know me fairly well, so if you stop in feel free to tell them that I sent you.

        I hope you have a great day looking at some of our wonderful barns!

        ~Laura

  4. mariekeates November 27, 2013 at 6:47 am #

    Hillsborough conjures up something very different to the people of the UK. It’s a place in Sheffield where there was a terrible disaster at a football stadium and many people died. Your Hillsborough is lovely, especially the bridges and the blue cow!

    • Touring NH November 27, 2013 at 10:01 am #

      It can be hard to think of beauty in a place where a tragedy has occurred. But, I guarantee that beauty can be found if you look in the right places!

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