Eisenhower tunnel is the gateway to the mountains of Breckenridge and Vail from the Front Range. It travels a distance of approximately 1.7 miles at an elevation of 11,013 feet. At the time of construction it was the highest tunnel in the world and is now still the highest tunnel in the United States. Here are some more FAQ’s about the Eisenhower tunnel from your favorite mountain shuttle company.
Q: Which President and Governor are the tunnels named after?
A: President Dwight D. Eisenhower and Governor Edwin C. Johnson
Q: What road inspired the Interstate System that lead to the creation of the tunnel?
A: The Autobahn in Germany. Dwight Eisenhower was so impressed that he decided to create the interstate system.
Q: What is the name of the alternate route around the tunnel?
A: Highway 6 which goes around the tunnel and up Loveland Pass and over the Continental Divide.
Q: What ski resort straddles both sides of the Eisenhower Tunnel?
A: Loveland Basin Ski Resort. The tunnel was built through the resort in the 70’s.
Q: When did construction start on the first bore of the Eisenhower Tunnel?
A: Construction began on the first bore of the Eisenhower Tunnel began on March 15, 1968.
Q: What was an initial setback to construction of the Eisenhower tunnel?
A: One of the initial setbacks to building the Eisenhower Tunnel were the discovery of fault lines during the pilot bores. Extra methods were put in place to prevent cave-ins and collapses but nonetheless three workers still lost their lives during the first boring and six workers during the second boring because of the faults.
Q: What was the total construction costs for both bores of the tunnel?
A: The total construction costs of the Eisenhower tunnel was $210.8 million dollars.
Q: What invention was inspired by construction of the Eisenhower Tunnel?
A: Artificial snow. Otto Werlin, GM of Loveland Ski Area, conceived the idea of artificial snow from observing the pumps and compressors being used to dig the nearby Eisenhower Tunnel.