Walk the tunnel to Whittier

Posted: Wednesday, June 11, 2003

The Greater Whittier Chamber of Commerce, in cooperation with the Alaska Department of Transportation, is sponsoring the second annual Walk to Whittier Saturday. This free event will give a unique and personal view the tunnel. It also gives an opportunity to experience Whittier and Prince William Sound.

Participants can park at the Portage Glacier Visitor Center, where the Forest Service will present a historical slide show, shown throughout the day, about the building of the tunnel. Shuttles from the visitor center to the staging area will begin at 1:30 p.m. Walkers will begin the 2.5-mile trek through the Anton Anderson Memorial Tunnel at 2:30 p.m. Leading the pack, with his dogs, will be Whittier's local Iditarod musher, Perry Solmonson.

Once the walkers reach the Whittier side, they can continue the .75-mile walk to Whittier, or buses will be waiting to transport them into town. There will be crafts, live music, activities, food specials, shop discounts, kayaking and sled-dogging demonstrations. Buses will take participants back through the tunnel to Bear Valley at 5, 6 and 6:45 p.m.

Participants should dress warm for the walk. The temperature in the tunnel is about 45 degrees year-round. Walkers should bring bike helmets to wear in the tunnel, or hard hats will be provided for those who show up without helmets. Children under 5 are welcome in covered strollers. No bikes or skates are allowed for safety reasons.

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