The Bridle Path, White Mountains

A young woman rides sidesaddle along a rocky path in the White Mountains of New Hampshire. She seems lost in thought, separated from the other riders, one of whom waves a handkerchief as if to draw her attention. The focus of Homer’s painting reflects two social trends that gathered momentum after the Civil War: the popularity of regional tourism in North America and the increasing independence of middle-class women.


Martha Bennett Phelps (Mrs. John Case Phelps), Wilkes-Barre, PA.; William George Phelps, Binghamton, NY., her son, by descent; Esther Phelps Pumpelly, Owego, NY., his daughter, by descent; [Macbeth Gallery, New York, 1937–8, sold to the Whitney]; Whitney Museum of American Art, New York (1938–50); [M. Knoedler & Co., New York, 1950, sold to Clark, 1 May 1950]; Sterling and Francine Clark (1950–55); Sterling and Francine Clark Art Institute, 1955.

Winslow Homer

American, 1836–1910

The Bridle Path, White Mountains


Oil on canvas

24 1/8 x 38 in. (61.3 x 96.5 cm) Frame: 35 3/4 x 49 3/4 in. (90.8 x 126.4 cm)

Acquired by Sterling and Francine Clark, 1950




Conrads, Margaret C. American Paintings and Sculpture at the Sterling and Francine Clark Art Institute. New York: Hudson Hills Press, 1990.