Here's the completed tunnel. Imagine how difficult it was to construct the viaduct on that loose talus slope. There must have been some interesting steps between yesterday's photo and today's.
The Mitchell Point Tunnel was filled with rock in the 1950's when a river level route was completed around Mitchell Point. It was destroyed in the 1960's when the interstate was widened. Plans are afoot to build a new tunnel at Mitchell Point as part of the strategy to reconnect the remaining pieces of the Columbia River Highway for use as a state historic trail.
If you want to learn more about the history of this tunnel, Scott Cook goes into much more depth in his great blog.
Neat photo! Comparing this photo to more recent ones, it look like they may have removed some of the craggy top.
l.e. on 8th June 2011 @ 8:12am
Prior to this there was a road much higher, which was called "the convict road" built by prisoners. If you know where to look you can still see evidence of it on Shell Rock Mountain. Much was blasted back to help keep falling rocks from coming down on the highway, thus the appearance of it being somewhat "capped off."
Charlott on 9th June 2011 @ 5:16am