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Old 07-26-2020, 01:00 PM   #1
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Zion National Park Utah Long Tunnel

Zion NP Utah

This is the Zion NP Tunnel that is really cool to drive in a car thru and back.
If you have a large RV and want to try this going 1 way to get out or in the park you need to pay for a permit so they allow 1 way traffic while you drive thru.
I was following a Airstream trailer and had to stay centered on the center line.

No lights inside the long tunnel but have access windows cut out of the sides to allow air flow and a little light.

Here is a video on Youtube. >>>>>>> https://youtu.be/Ni_UcpyCaRY
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Old 07-26-2020, 01:07 PM   #2
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Historical Information about tunnel.

The route was surveyed in 1923 by B.J. Finch, district engineer of the US Bureau of Public Roads, Howard C. Means, a Utah state engineer, and John Winder, a local rancher.
Work began in 1927 on a total of 25 miles of road, which was completed in 1930.
The highway features a 5,613-foot tunnel that follows the profile of the Pine Creek Canyon wall at a consistent distance of 21 feet from the outside face of the rock to the centerline of the tunnel. The west portal is framed by a masonry facade of cut sandstone, while the east portal is a naturalistically formed hole in the rock, entered directly from a bridge. Construction proceeded using mining techniques rather than traditional tunneling techniques, starting from a stope and working outward to the portals.[4] The tunnel uses galleries to provide light and ventilation through the canyon wall to the outside air. The galleries also provided a place to dispose of rock generated during construction, which was dumped through the galleries into the canyon. Parking spaces were originally provided at the galleries, but were discontinued due to safety concerns. Some galleries have been repaired and partially closed with concrete due to damage from rockslides. The interior of the tunnel is rock-faced, with concrete reinforcement at selected locations.

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Work on the tunnel was started in 1927 by the Nevada Construction Company and was completed in 1930 at a cost of $503,000 (equivalent to $8.42 million in 2019).[
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The tunnel's restricted dimensions require that vehicles over 11.33 feet in height or 7.83 feet in width give advance notice so that two-way traffic can be shut down in the tunnel, allowing oversize vehicles to proceed down the center of the tunnel.
Vehicles over 13.08 feet tall and semi-trailers as well as bicycles and pedestrians are prohibited in the tunnel.
The Zion Mount Carmel Highway was added to the National Register of Historic Places on July 7, 1987.
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Old 07-26-2020, 01:10 PM   #3
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Map of its location
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Old 07-26-2020, 01:14 PM   #4
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I pulled mine through it. There was more than enough room for the old coachmen 233RBS and exited feeling taken advantage of.
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Old 07-26-2020, 01:15 PM   #5
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Here are two pictures of the air vents/windows I mentioned.
Actually they also were used to dump the waste materials as they were building the tunnel and get fresh oxygen for the workers.
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Old 07-26-2020, 01:26 PM   #6
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More pictures

A few more pictures to show the beauty of Zion NP.
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Old 07-26-2020, 01:33 PM   #7
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Originally Posted by Iggy View Post
Zion NP Utah

This is the Zion NP Tunnel that is really cool to drive in a car thru and back.
If you have a large RV and want to try this going 1 way to get out or in the park you need to pay for a permit so they allow 1 way traffic while you drive thru.
I was following a Airstream trailer and had to stay centered on the center line.

No lights inside the long tunnel but have access windows cut out of the sides to allow air flow and a little light.

Here is a video on Youtube. >>>>>>> https://youtu.be/Ni_UcpyCaRY


Am I the only one.... just a bit askeered?
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Old 07-26-2020, 01:45 PM   #8
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We were there in March, 2019, and enjoyed exploring that side of Zion and were intrigued by the tunnel and its history. That night, there was heavy rain and the next day we heard the road was closed to due some cave-ins. These are a couple of photos shared by a friend showing the road near the tunnel. We were thankful we had explored the area the day before the rains came.
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Old 07-26-2020, 02:20 PM   #9
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and that is why we chose to leave the camper at Bryce and make Zion a day trip (they are only 90 miles apart.).... and it was a whole lot cooler at Bryce.
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Old 07-26-2020, 02:42 PM   #10
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Thanks so much for posting the pics and video link!
We need a lot more of this type of content on the site.
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Old 07-26-2020, 03:25 PM   #11
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We traveled through tunnel in our truck but not with the trailer. Too much of a pain with the trailer.
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Old 07-26-2020, 05:41 PM   #12
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Here are a couple of pictures in Bryce Canyon. We chose to stay in between the two parks and avoid hauling the trailer through the tunnel.
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Old 07-26-2020, 06:28 PM   #13
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We pulled our camper through the tunnel about 2 weeks ago.
The ranger at the entrance got out and measured the width of our camper. She said we were too wide and had to pay to stop 2 way the traffic so we could go down the middle. We were first in line and the kids loved it!
We had not been there before and at first we were afraid the ranger was going to make us drive miles around the park to go in the other entrance.
We were so relieved we just had to pay the $15 to go through we didn't get any pictures.
Thank for posting yours!
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Old 07-27-2020, 11:35 AM   #14
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Thanks so much for posting the pics and video link!
We need a lot more of this type of content on the site.
Thank you very much. My pleasure.
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Old 07-27-2020, 12:18 PM   #15
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When we went through it a few years ago, we had to buy the permit to access the tunnel when we entered the park. The rangers were turning people away that had not purchased the permit in advance.
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Old 07-27-2020, 12:31 PM   #16
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I drove a rented 30 foot Motorhome towing a boat through the tunnel in the early 1980's before they required a permit and one-way traffic. I passed another Motorhome going the other direction while in the tunnel. There was about an inch separation of our mirrors as we passed at 25 mph.
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Old 07-27-2020, 12:44 PM   #17
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Am I the only one.... just a bit askeered?
It is a bit of a weird feeling looking up at the portals from the road below and then actually driving through the tunnel and knowing how far down it is.
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Old 07-27-2020, 12:47 PM   #18
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Drive Through Zion Tunnel

Great images Iggy. We drove the tunnel route west to east on the way home in 2017. Going through the tunnel itself is one of the coolest things we have ever done, especially when you read a history that shows old photos of how the route was chosen and surveyed hanging on the side of the mountain. They were tough in those days!

We pulled up to the entrance to the park on the west side and the very young lady ranger stuck her head out of the doorway and, without missing a beat, said our rig was over 50 feet long (it is 51, TV and TT) and there is a switch back road that has a max allowed length of 50 feet so vehicles do not go over the middle line when driving up or down. We discussed it and she let us go ahead. That road, to me, was the real challenge. The tunnel itself is just awesome. The galleries are almost a construction work of art.
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Old 07-27-2020, 02:15 PM   #19
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I've driven both a 24 foot and 40 foot motorhome through. Because you essentially have the tunnel to yourself it is pretty easy.
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Old 07-27-2020, 06:32 PM   #20
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Zion is great

I really appreciate this thread about Zion. I was out there just a few years ago and loved seeing and experiencing Zion. There is something about that park that is mesmerizing somehow. Our introduction to Zion was waiting at the end of the tunnel behind several cars while one lone bus, or maybe a truck, came through all alone. When we exited the tunnel and got our first look at the hills and valleys, it just about took my breath away. A lot of people talk about the Grand Canyon, and I love that park too. But, I think Zion is under-sold and more people need to visit this park just to experience the other-worldness of the entire place. I really loved seeing your pics of Zion and Bryce. Bryce is definitely worth the seeing too. Thanks again for reminding us that there are so many great places are in the United States.
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