Saturday, July 30, 2011

Whittier, Alaska

Saturday: (07/30) French toast and spam for breakfast. We went through the Railroad/Auto tunnel to Whittier. This is a 2.5 mile tunnel, the longest combined train/auto tunnel. It's a single lane tunnel.

Whittier Marina Whittier Harbor View
We explored around the marina. It is a very active fishing port. There was a cruise ship in port that dwarfs the "city."

Old Army Buildings In Whittier Whitter Village
Whitter is an interesting "city'. It has about 139 residents. Almost all of them live in a single building that also includes the city offices and a bunch of other offices. The building, on the left above, is one of two big buildings that were built back in 1956 and were abandoned by the Army four years later in 1960. They survived the 1964 earthquake very well being well built concrete buildings sitting on solid rock. The public works building is another old Army building. The picture above right pretty much shows the entire village except for the marina area.

Old Army Buildings In Whittier Old Army Buildings In Whittier
The other building has since fallen into total disrepair and has been severely vandalized. The water leaking through the broken windows and through cracks in the floors has created stalactites.

Pedestrian Tunnel In Whittier Salmon Berries In Whittier
To get to the village area from the marina and under the railroad yard pedestrians use the tunnel above left. On our walk behind the village we found a lot of salmon berries.

Dawn And Lou By River At Whittier
There is also a nice little park and campground by the village.

We enjoyed looking around the town. For such a small town it took us quite a while. We had lunch at the Chinese Sea restaurant by the marina. We also explored all the roads we could find driving out Shotgun Cove Road. They seem to be extending the Road West and selling lots so possibly eventually there will be more town. we also drove out to some old munitions bunkers and the trailhead to the Portage Passage trail on a short Forest Service Road. The driving tour didn't take long. Not much road this side of the tunnel. We returned to camp about 6:30. For dinner Lou made beef noodles and a green salad.

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