On Saturday, April 7th, we set off to do some exploring of the area. We had noticed on our way into Corinth that there was a sign for the Corinth Baptist Church which was built in 1857 so we decided to stop there on our way to town.
The door was locked but we were able to look in the windows. It looks like this one room church still holds services each Sunday based on the items that we saw through the window. Another clue was that it had what looked to be a butane heater inside where normally the pulpit would be as well as a wood stove off to the side. Behind the church was another building (outhouse?) that had “Ladies Rest Room” painted on the back of it.
Right next to the church was a small cemetery with both old and new gravestones. Each grave site had an arrangement of artificial silk flowers on it. Not sure if they are always there or perhaps they had been placed there because Easter was the next day. I tried to find more about the history of the church and cemetery, but no luck, perhaps someone in town would have known something about it.
After leaving the church, our next stop was at the Natural Bridge in the small town of, you guessed it, Natural Bridge (population 28 in 2000) about a 20 minute drive. Located near the intersection of US Highway 278 and Alabama Highway 13, the 60 foot high, 148 foot long stone arch is the longest natural bridge east of the Rockies.
We weren’t quite sure what to expect when we pulled into the parking lot but I must say we were pleasantly surprised. After stopping in the entrance house/gift shop where we were greeted by a very pleasant older gentleman and paying the $2.50 admission fee, we proceeded to follow a gravel path towards the bridge. Within a very short distance, there it was – a huge, massive rock arch just in front of us. So huge, that it was totally impossible to take a picture of it (a better picture of the bridge in its entirety can be seen by clicking here).
Because of insurance concerns, tourists are not allowed on top of the bridge, but there are handrails and a dirt path underneath the rock structure. You can get an idea of the size of the arch by the picture of Rob standing along the path. We had to be careful in a few places where water was dripping from the top of the bridge, making the dirt and rocks a little slippery.
We followed the trail past the arch area to where there were other shallow caves created by overhangs in other huge rocks. In a few areas, the trail had a slight incline with lots of rocks and roots to crawl over but overall it wasn’t a bad walk. Along the way, there was a sign for “Indian Face” which is another huge rock with the silhouette of a face. Can you see it on the upper right hand side of the rock (photo above right)?
We didn’t finish the entire trail as it meandered into a rough path and looked as if it would become a harder climb so we headed back to the parking lot. From there, we headed back to Double Springs where we stopped at Food Mart to do some grocery shopping. Overall a very pleasant day!
Note: It can be a bit challenging to determine the exact location of the Natural Bridge attraction – use this address in Google Maps: County Road 3500 Haleyville, AL 35565 or this lat/lon: 34.088846,-87.616037 and you should not have any problems.