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Author Topic: Old tunnel at 4th of July Pass, US 10  (Read 5094 times)

Kniwt

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Old tunnel at 4th of July Pass, US 10
« on: July 04, 2019, 06:30:40 PM »

I was browsing my 1946 Rand McNally (don't judge), and on the part of Idaho that spilled over onto the Washington page, I saw a notation I hadn't noticed before along US 10: "4TH OF JULY SUMMIT EL. 3070 (TUNNEL)." Oddly, the "(TUNNEL)" part is not included on the actual Idaho page.

So, that got me to wondering: At some point, did traffic cross the 4th of July Pass through a tunnel, either at the summit or on the way up/down? None of the history pages seem to have anything, but I did find two views of what appears to be a highway tunnel in the area:

From U of Idaho archives, identified as from 1938:


From random Pinterest person:


The 1941 Rand McNally also has the same notation only on the Washington page. By 1952, the notation is gone, although the maps had been redone by then. So it's unclear when traffic stopped using the tunnel, and whether it was removed during four-laning.

(Edit to get a better image of the postcard from U of Idaho.)
« Last Edit: July 04, 2019, 11:17:29 PM by Kniwt »
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mgk920

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Re: Old tunnel at 4th of July Pass, US 10
« Reply #1 on: July 05, 2019, 10:00:23 AM »

US 10 used a tunnel at the pass' summit.  I'm not sure of when it was opened nor decommissioned and I-90 now passes through a major cut where the tunnel was.  Before the tunnel, the Yellowstone Trail crossed the summit of that pass.

Mike
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NE2

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Re: Old tunnel at 4th of July Pass, US 10
« Reply #2 on: July 05, 2019, 07:53:08 PM »

Quote from: Bureau of Public Roads, Highway Progress, 1959
Idaho recently completed a 7-mile section of Interstate Route 90 over the summit of the Fourth of July Canyon east of Coeur d'Alene. This four-lane divided section, which cost $3.5 million, replaces a winding, inadequate road and a narrow 400-foot tunnel built in the early 1930's. Just a century ago Lt. John Mullan and an Army contingent built the historic wagon road, through this mountainous terrain, that came to bear his name.
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Kniwt

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Re: Old tunnel at 4th of July Pass, US 10
« Reply #3 on: July 05, 2019, 08:25:10 PM »

Quote from: Bureau of Public Roads, Highway Progress, 1959

Score! Thanks. (I would love to see some of the signage that had evolved around that spot by 1959. Given the increasing traffic and the new-ish sign standards, there surely had to be a bunch of warnings about that tunnel by then. And it would also be interesting to see how they maintained traffic through the pass during construction/destruction.)
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Mapmikey

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Re: Old tunnel at 4th of July Pass, US 10
« Reply #4 on: July 06, 2019, 10:02:04 AM »

Quote from: Bureau of Public Roads, Highway Progress, 1959

Score! Thanks. (I would love to see some of the signage that had evolved around that spot by 1959. Given the increasing traffic and the new-ish sign standards, there surely had to be a bunch of warnings about that tunnel by then. And it would also be interesting to see how they maintained traffic through the pass during construction/destruction.)

It appears the tunnel was bypassed in 1957.  This photo shows a couple signs along the old approach but I couldn't discern them even when zoomed in - https://outlet.historicimages.com/products/spa69144

Historic Aerials shows the tunnel was still there until between 1981-92.
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sparker

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Re: Old tunnel at 4th of July Pass, US 10
« Reply #5 on: July 14, 2019, 01:55:51 AM »

Quote from: Bureau of Public Roads, Highway Progress, 1959
Idaho recently completed a 7-mile section of Interstate Route 90 over the summit of the Fourth of July Canyon east of Coeur d'Alene. This four-lane divided section, which cost $3.5 million, replaces a winding, inadequate road and a narrow 400-foot tunnel built in the early 1930's. Just a century ago Lt. John Mullan and an Army contingent built the historic wagon road, through this mountainous terrain, that came to bear his name.

Lt. Mullan's name outlives the old wagon trail; there is Mullan Pass, about 4 miles north of McDonald Pass, where US 12 crosses the Continental Divide.  The old Northern Pacific RR main line traversed the pass (with a summit tunnel); that was the first RR line to cross the divide north of the original transcontinental rail line, which crossed the divide in southern Wyoming.  The line is still in service as the main line of Montana Rail Link, a regional (Billings-Sandpoint, ID) connector. 
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J3ebrules

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Re: Old tunnel at 4th of July Pass, US 10
« Reply #6 on: July 14, 2019, 06:44:44 PM »

I was browsing my 1946 Rand McNally (don't judge), and on the part of Idaho that spilled over onto the Washington page, I saw a notation I hadn't noticed before...

Rewind a bit - where are you getting these 1940’s Rand McNallys??? How much do they typically sell for?
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Rothman

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Re: Old tunnel at 4th of July Pass, US 10
« Reply #7 on: July 14, 2019, 06:49:20 PM »

Got mine (1949) from my father-in-law. :D
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texaskdog

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Re: Old tunnel at 4th of July Pass, US 10
« Reply #8 on: July 14, 2019, 08:17:16 PM »

i cant find this tunnel anywhere on the old pictures
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Kniwt

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Re: Old tunnel at 4th of July Pass, US 10
« Reply #9 on: July 18, 2019, 08:40:26 PM »

I was browsing my 1946 Rand McNally (don't judge), and on the part of Idaho that spilled over onto the Washington page, I saw a notation I hadn't noticed before...

Rewind a bit - where are you getting these 1940’s Rand McNallys??? How much do they typically sell for?

I went on an eBay spree a few years back and picked up a small bunch, all as "Buy It Now" instead of through auction, although I haven't tried again in quite a while. I don't think I paid more than $10 for any single year (from 1927 to 1974); the quality was at least passable on all, although some had writing and overstressed binding.
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