Whittier Tunnel Walk 2011

Entrance to the the tunnel

On Sunday, Fathers day, The March of Dimes hosted a walk through the Whittier tunnel. A fun fact about this tunnel, its the longest combined train/automotive tunnel in North America at 2.5 miles. Whittier started out as a Military outpost during World War II, but to get supplies there they had to drill through the tunnel. In an effort to save time, they started drilling at either side of the mountain, and met in the middle. Turns out they were off, but only by about an inch.

       
Me and my Friend Rachel

When we reached the visitor’s center, it looked as though they were wrapping up. I couldn’t quite figure out what was happening- where were all the people?! Suddenly a women hollered, “All walker’s on the bus! The bus is leaving now!”

Turns out the walk didn’t start at the visitor’s center, it started about two miles further down the road, at the actual tunnel. Who knew?

Me in my required hard hat.

It was so neat inside. The tunnel was lit at the top, and all sides were covered by netting, and it was kinda wet inside.  (Thats what she said.)

The light at the end of the tunnel

 The further we got in, the more stale the air became. At two points, volunteers were handing out water bottles. I grabbed one, even though I had brought my own. I always bring my own.

Upon exiting the tunnel, to the left.

 When we reached the end, we weren’t really sure what was going to happen next. Did we have to walk back to the otherside? Where were all the finishers ahead of us? Why did it have to be so dreary?

Turns out, they loaded us into the buses once more, and took us into town. Rachel and I grabbed some halibut and chips, and a beer. The thing is about this, the walk was technically free. There was no registration fee. If I had known all that went into organizing this event, I would have actually tried to donate. Next year, I definitely plan to.

beers

We sat at a table for 6 people, and so two others joined us. One was a retired designer, the other a school administrator. We had a fantastic conversation about life and where we came from, death, and of course, bear attacks. 

Me at Portage Lake.

God, I love Alaska.

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