Know Before You Go
The parking lot for the tunnel is at the top of the valley, at the visitor center. It is possible to hike down to the tunnel, a switchback trail that drops several hundred feet quickly. Allow about 20 minutes for the hike down, about 30 for the climb back up. The trail is good, but it is not easy. As an alternative, there is a ski lift that runs during normal hours. From the lift, the tunnel is easily accessible on a boardwalk. During the Christmas season, lighted displays decorate the area around the lift.
The park also has other excellent hiking trails, fine picnic and camping areas, and a restored 19th-century blockhouse like those that used to watch over the Wilderness Trail nearby. In addition, keep an eye out for posted events; the Park often provides guided hikes to places like Devils Bathtub or canoeing events on the Clinch River.