July 7, 2009

Alpine Tunnel

On Sunday we headed up to the Alpine Tunnel with our babysitter and two of her kids. It was a long and rough ride but worth it. The Alpine Tunnel lies above Pitkin, Colorado. It is an old train tunnel built back in the mining days. It has since caved in but the drive was fun and a bit scary. Joe has never been to the tunnel but he has always wanted to go. A very long time ago I had visted the tunnel with my family when we were on vacation out here (I was in elementary school is how long ago it was!). We had a great time and most of these pictures are for my dad. He will be very excited to see these.

This is a picture of how narrow the road was. I am glad that I was not driving.

These are pictures of the view from the car to the valley floor below. It was a long way down.

Lily just hanging out. She was a tropper.

Mikayla enjoying the ride.

We made it.

Isn't this high alpine valley beautiful. We were at 11,500 feet and the mountains around us had to be at least 13,000.

There is not much to see anymore.

A friendly marmot. I love these guys and they drive the dogs nuts with their high pitched squeaks.

This is on the way down from the tunnel. The rock outcropping was where we were at one point in the drive.

This is a rock wall built by hand.


Anonymous said...

That's funny because I totally don't remember going there as a kid. :)

Cathy said...

i've never heard of this--I'd love to go there sometime!

Sugar Jones said...

THAT looks like a fun trek!

Stephanie said...

I wouldn't want to be the one driving either. That looks scar-eeeee! ;)

Musings of a Housewife said...

Oh my word, the scenery is BREATHTAKING. I have been to Colorado ONCE and I would love to go back. Thanks for sharing!

Mary @ Parenthood said...

Really beautiful. I'm here because you commented on Stephanie's blog (Metropolitan mama) that you make your own laundry detergent. I was just wondering how that worked?

Heidi said...

Beautiful pictures!
We recently returned home from our RV trip, Colorado was my favorite place! We stayed in Estes Park 3 days and nights, we loved it! We also went to Rocky Mountain National Park, took the Trail Ridge road at the highest point was over 14,000 ft. and NO GUARD RAILS anywhere on the road!!! Had a great time, didn't see Colorado Springs & Manitou Springs, will see that next time. Very hard to come back to HOT, Las Vegas and desert scenery after being in Colorado! LOL!

Tiffany said...

Heidi - I am so glad you had such a fun time in Colorado. I am sure after 80 degree days in Colorado it is hard to go back to Vegas! I think 80 is hot.

Tiffany said...

Heidi - I am so glad you had such a fun time in Colorado. I am sure after 80 degree days in Colorado it is hard to go back to Vegas! I think 80 is hot.

Gary said...

My wife and I ventured to this trail this past Friday and I have to inform all of you that may be too afraid to try. This is by far one of the easiest trails you will encounter. I am a very experienced 4 wheeler, currently using an ATV and previously a Land Rover Discovery II (Stock), and a stock Jeep or 4x4 truck will work just fine. The trail is wide in most spots and really doesn't get that rough until the last couple of miles which is just lots of small rocks but no real obstacles. In fact, last year we went to Costa Rica and the road to the lodge we stayed at was much rougher and we had a rental Geo Tracker. Just remember to stay safe, pull over at the many wide spots for faster vehicles and enjoy the beautiful 10 mile drive up the mountain. I mean if a guy from Texas can drive his big ol' Ford 4x4 up the trail... This is actually a good beginner trail. Enjoy

Tiffany said...

Gary I don't think you finished reading this blog entry because we made it to the top and we were driving a Yukon. We wanted to get out and walk for about the last mile because we wanted some exercise. We actually made the trip with 3 kids in the car as well.

Anonymous said...

I happened upon this site while searching to see if the Alpine Tunnel was open this year for 4-wheeling. We heard there was a landslide and that crews were working on getting it re-opened. We're actually heading up Hancock Pass on our ATVs tomorrow morning, 7/17/2010. We do this ride every year. We start in St. Elmo, head up Hancock Pass, detour to the Alpine Tunnel, go to Pitkin for lunch, head up Cumberland Pass to Tincup, and return to St. Elmo via Tincup Pass. It is an incredible ride, even for someone who has lived in Colorado for 30 yrs.! I hope the Tunnel is open tomorrow. If not, we will just enjoy the trip to Pitkin as we have heard from the Forest Service that Tincup Pass is closed due to too much snow still in JULY!!