A Drone Flew High Above The Abandoned Donner Pass Tunnels In Northern California And Caught The Most Incredible Footage
It’s always amazing to witness how nature decides to reclaim a long-abandoned structure. There’s just something about the blend of man-made technology and natural beauty that never ceases to amaze. The iconic Donner Pass tunnels near Truckee are a prime example of this. Built for the transcontinental railroad over a century ago, the tunnels have sat empty for decades and are now a popular place to explore. Visiting the area can be tricky since Union Pacific Railroad still technically owns the property, but you can see these abandoned tunnels like never before with the gravity-defying drone footage at the bottom of this article.
The long-abandoned Donner Pass tunnels near Truckee, California make up one of the region's most popular hiking trails and historic sites. It's definitely the type of place you should see with your own eyes, but this fantastic drone footage from Jeff Hall Photography is the next best thing.
The nearly 5-minute long video captures what it's like to view these incredible tunnels from above. Set against the mesmerizing backdrop of the Sierra Nevadas, the footage perfectly showcases the area's abundant beauty.
The Donner tunnels are a beloved pit stop among travelers, and we can definitely understand why. The tunnels have sat abandoned since 1993 when the railroad line was rerouted through Mount Judah instead. The tunnels still stand, but have fallen into a state of eerily beautiful disrepair.
Construction on the series of tunnels was originally completed in August 1867. The tunnels' very first train passed through just a year later in 1868. Constructed mostly by Chinese laborers, the tunnels took approximately 15 months of tiring work to finish.
Today, the tunnels are a popular destination for adventurers. Visitors note that walking through the completely dark tunnels makes for a delightfully creepy experience. Most of the walls are covered in all types of graffiti. It seems like there's something different at every single turn!
Tunnel #6 seems to get the most attention from visitors. At an impressive 1,659-feet-long, you can only imagine just how much manpower was required to construct it. Another well-known feature is China Wall, a large wall built to hold up the trains as they transitioned into another tunnel.
Visiting the iconic Donner Pass tunnels is a must for any nature lover or history enthusiast, but the excellent drone video below does a pretty great job of showing off the area's strange beauty. Check it out:
Have you seen the abandoned Donner Pass tunnels for yourself yet? It’s definitely a bucket list NorCal destination.
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Donner Pass, California 96161, USA