Old hotel in Skykomish, WA.

Washington State's Cascade Mountains divide two worlds of climate.  Even in the summer, the west side is often cool and cloudy while the east side of the mountains is usually dry, hot and sunny.  Hotel overlooks BNSF Railroad tracks not far from the 8 mile long Cascade Tunnel under Steven's Pass.
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1999
BNSF locomotive
Taking a break in Skykomish, WA. After pulling a freight train through the 8 mile long Cascade Tunnel under Steven's Pass.  I think that tunnel is the longest railroad tunnel in North America.  It was opened in 1929.


1999

Reader comment

The "New" Cascade Tunnel (at 7.79 miles) was the
longest railroad tunnel in North America when it was completed in 1929.
It eclipsed both Canadian Pacific's Connaught (Rogers Pass) and Denver
 & Salt Lake's (DRG&W, SP, UP) Moffat (Rollins Pass) Tunnels.  Burlington
Northern's Flathead Tunnel (completed early in the 1970's by the Feds
who were flooding the old line through Rexford with backwater from the
Libby Dam - Kootenai River) came up just a few hundred feet short of
 the New Cascade Tunnel.  The Canadian Pacific completed a second tunnel
 over Rogers Pass in the late 1980's making it North America's new champion.

Dave.

 
My 1999 visit to Scenic Spring

Just at the bottom of the steep part of the hill on the west side of Steven's Pass (Highway 2) there is an unmarked dirt road, or track, that heads up a steep climb to Scenic Hot Springs.  This is a natural spring that has been fixed up with volunteer talent for decks and pools.  It is "clothing optional." I visited in 1996. Warm and friendly. This photo was taken in the early morning when no one was around.

More recently, I read that the spring has been closed.  Structures torn down and no tresspassing signs posted.

Theslowlane.com.