Travel & Outdoor
Country Extra

Country Extra September 2019

See more of America's countryside with every issue of Country EXTRA!  Country EXTRA is delivered in between your issues of Country.  Celebrate the people, places and stories that make country life so special. Discover America through first-hand reader visits with country folks, full-color photos, reviews of country inns, country-fresh recipes and time-saving tips and shortcuts.

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7 Issues

in this issue

1 min.
the best of summer

A FEW YEARS AGO, I was thrilled to introduce my children to Great Smoky Mountains National Park. Our family vacation to Tennessee included gorgeous views, a waterfall hike, a scenic drive along the loop road in Cades Cove and ice cream cones at the Cades Cove Trading Co. My son was on the lookout for wildlife, especially bears. To his dismay (and my delight), we didn’t see any. We did see crowds, though. Judging by the more than 11 million people who visited the park last year, there’s plenty of love for the Smokies. In hindsight, I wish I had spoken to Pat and Chuck Blackley before our trip. On page 24, these longtime contributors share not only their gorgeous photos of the park, but also their secrets to having the…

1 min.
… dear country

The sunflower in this photo grows on my brother’s farm in British Columbia. The plant has about 16 flowers growing on it. My brother subscribes to Country and it would be such a treat for him to see this photo published! MARGARET LAMB Calgary, Alberta DARIS HOWARD’S STORY about his dad in the May issue (page 44, “A Life-Changing Decision”) was worth a subscription! I share the magazine with family and friends but will ask for this one back so I can keep it! Thank you for publishing such good family reading. SUSIE CROTTS Thomasville, North Carolina I ENJOYED THE MAY edition of Country Extra. In the article “Home on the Range” (page 32), I discovered an area of Kansas I knew nothing about. As a history lover and traveler, I learned about the…

1 min.
a bridge to the past

Pennsylvania is known for its covered bridges—it has about 200—and I love to visit them. It is amazing how well-built they are and that so many have withstood the test of time. Some are more than 150 years old. Hewitt Covered Bridge in Bedford County is one of my favorites. Built in 1879, it sits on a quiet road along the woods—the perfect location for plenty of pictures and reflection. As I explored the bridge on this summer day, the heat seemed to fade away, thanks to the cooling waters of Town Creek and the shade of the surrounding trees. The setting plus the romance of the bridge made me want to stay for a while. Tour Hewitt Covered Bridge and others in Bedford County. Find a driving map at visitbedfordcounty .com/covered bridges…

1 min.
going to the sun

THE MOUNTAINS KEEP CALLING me back to Glacier National Park in Montana. My husband, Peter, and I have been there three times and intend to go a fourth time this month to celebrate my 75th birthday. What a treat it will be! The photo at right was taken on our first trip there. On this late September morning, the sky was clear and the temperature was about 25 degrees. We boarded a Red Bus, which took us up Going-to-the-Sun Road. The “go over the cliff and you’re a goner” views were incredible. We learned so much from the jammer, the name given to the drivers of these 1930s replica buses. Glacier is my favorite of all the parks I’ve visited. It’s quiet and serene—just the way you’d want the rest of the world…

1 min.
the school of my dreams

WHENEVER I PASS BY AN empty country school, I feel compelled to stop. I see beauty in the weathered boards and find comfort in walking the perimeter, peeking into the windows, and imagining the bustle of activity that took place within these walls years ago. How many teachers and young people spent their days inside learning, laughing, and perhaps gazing through the windows and daydreaming? I imagine there’s someone out there reminiscing about a time when the walls were bright white, the bell rang and children’s games were played in the yard. It would be wonderful to visit with former students and hear about their school days. I am not the only one who is enthralled with these magnificent structures. There are folks who’ve restored these icons and turned them into homes…

2 min.
childhood games

In 1945 I lived in Pottsboro, Texas, with my grandmother. Mom had joined the Women’s Army Corps and Dad was in Hawaii serving in the Navy. Across the railroad in a small house lived a couple we called Mr. Jack and Mrs. Donna, who most of the time sat outside on their front porch where it was much cooler. While she mended clothes, he whittled an animal or a toy for us kids. One day I asked Mr. Jack about the large project he was working on at the time. To my surprise, it was a pair of stilts for me. When he finished, I saw that he had used an old belt and cut it to fit over the parts of the stilts where my feet would go. Then he explained, “Lean…