Our first motorcycle trip to the tunnel was Memorial Day Weekend of 1994. We rode on the access road which followed the tracks from Easton to Martin. My Brother and I decided we weren't brave enough to venture into the tunnel. I guess it was partly due to not knowing the condition of the tunnel and what we may encounter once inside. Early in 1995 we told one of our cousins about the tunnel and decided to plan a ride through it after the snow melted and the weather improved.
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June, July 1995
|On June, 20th 1995 six of us met in Easton to make the trip. I rigged up an auxiliary spot light to the front of my bike for extra visibility and took the lead. The tunnel absorbed the light like a black hole due to 90+ years of soot build up on the interior of the tunnel. Visibility wasn't too good for the riders near the rear of the pack because of the dust and soot kicked up by the rest of us.|
|These two photos show the extensive damage that occurred when the drainage channel under the track became blocked with debris. The water flowed out of the opening on the left and created a large washout about 4 feet deep. As you can see, it was a little tricky crossing it with our bikes due to the large rocks, etc.|
About mid July 1995 we learned about BN's plans to re-open the Stampede Pass route. We made several more trips to the area to see the progress being made and to ride through the tunnel again while we still could. The following photos were taken on July 23, 1995.
During this visit to the tunnel we encountered several construction workers
who were repairing the washout. They were camped at Stampede in a old
travel trailer. They told us that a few days before some other people had
stopped by to look at the tunnel and took the keys to all of the
The workers said they had to drive back to Seattle to get new keys so they could proceed with their work.
|The two large objects above the tunnel entrance are large "squirrel cage" style blowers that were used for ventilating the tunnel. They were covered by a small building prior to the fire that destroyed it and the wood timber snowshed.|
|This is a view looking west, the tunnel entrance is behind me.|
|Heavy equipment near the West portal, the dozer on the right is attempting to clear the under track drainage channel.|
|The metal framework seen was part of the tunnel's ventilation system. Prior to the fire that destroyed the snow shed, this framework was covered with wood planks.|
For more photos, please proceed to page 1, page 3 or return to index
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