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North Bend, Washington

Snoqualmie Tunnel

This long, dark tunnel is open to hikers, but those without lights are known to get confused even on the straight path. 

The Snoqualmie Tunnel is part of Iron Horse State Park, a 1,612-acre park that was once part of the path of the Chicago-Milwaukee-St. Paul-Pacific Railroad.

The tunnel is what’s left of a section of track and is now open to hikers. The tunnel itself is a dark 2.3-mile stretch which burrows straight through a mountain. Cool and comfortable, even downright cold at its center, the tunnel requires hikers to wear layers for warmth. The closer you get to the middle, the smaller the light at either end becomes, until you’re completely surrounded by drippy, echoing darkness.

The trail is flat and straight so it’s an easy, if long, walk and there are picnic benches at the far end with a spectacular view of the surrounding mountains. Flashlights or headlamps are a requirement for getting through safely, however, as hikers have been known to lose their sense of direction in the subterranean dark.

Don’t expect to navigate the tunnel in winter. During the colder months, the tunnel is closed to all traffic due to dangerous icy conditions.

Know Before You Go

From Seattle drive east on I-90 to exit 54. Turn east (left) on State Route 906, and in 0.5 mile turn right on Keechelus Lake Boat Launch Road. In about 200 feet turn right to access the trailhead parking area.