Celebrate the McFee Tunnel opening
July 15 in the early afternoon
North Shore of Lake Crescent, in the Olympic National Park
Saturday, July 15, will be a momentous event in the history of the building of the Olympic Discovery Trail – a celebratory opening of the McFee Tunnel along the Spruce Railroad Trail. This tunnel, the longer of the two being reopened, is part of a larger project upgrading the Spruce Railroad Trail. The Clallam County Public Works Department used a Washington Wildlife and Recreation Program grant to reconstruct a half-mile of the historic Spruce Railroad Trail, restore the 96-year-old McFee Tunnel, and expand the trailhead on the north shore of Lake Crescent. In 1918, the U.S. Army’s Spruce Production Division built 36 miles of railroad west of Port Angeles, including two railroad tunnels that were used to deliver spruce for World War I airplanes. The McFee Tunnel was closed by blasting in the 1960s. The blocked tunnel, steep trail, rocky and muddy trail surfaces, and poor drainage prevented touring bicyclists from using the trail, forcing them to take a dangerous route on U.S. Highway 101 on the south side of the lake. The County restored the tunnel and trail so it can be used by people with disabilities as well as by hikers, bicyclists, and equestrians. The project creates a non-motorized trail separated from car traffic on the north shore of Lake Crescent, connecting 60 miles of trail to the east of the project site and 20 miles to the west.