Your own private Moria

As far as I’m concerned, the greatest thing about Seattle is that it’s situated just between a vast body of water and a mountain range. Any Feng Shui student can tell you that’s as good as it gets, chi-wise, and it means there’s a neverending supply of obscure sanctuaries and (un)natural wonders within an hour’s drive.

On the way back from a family reunion in Spokane last weekend, we stopped for a breather at Lake Keechelus near the Snoqualmie Pass. A little trail led off from the parking lot to a sign advertising the Snoqualmie Tunnel. A little further along we found two massive wooden doors partially obscuring a pitch black tunnel mouth, so cold it was sucking the air out of our lungs. The accompanying display explained that it was a 2.3 mile long rail tunnel (built for enterprising Seattle skiers in 1915) that had been converted into a hiking/biking trail. Just walking fifty feet in toward the unbroken darkness and the sound of falling water was enough to give us the willies. Needless to say, I’m hoarding sweaters and flashlights for a trip later this summer.

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