The town of Whittier is nearly surrounded by mountains and is on the edge of the beautiful Prince William Sound. Until June 2000, the only way to get there was by boat or railroad. The railroad tunnel was very important during World War Two when Alaska was attacked by the Japanese in the Aleutian Islands at Dutch Harbor. Whittier was also an important location during the Cold War because it is close to Russia.
In 2000 the 2.5 mile tunnel was converted to accommodate automobile traffic, and we decided to go to this lovely place. There is only one lane, so when a train goes through, no cars can travel. After the train clears the tunnel on the hour cars can travel from Whittier via the tunnel to Portage, on the 1/2 hour travel is in the opposite direction. It works but requires planning and organization !!!
We drove to Whittier from Anchorage for a day trip. On the way we saw Dall sheep on the side of the road but up high. Cars stopped to take pictures and then we were on our way. We enjoyed our day, seeing the town and having dinner at the Sweetwater Seafood Restaurant, where seafood was the obvious choice! The marina is huge because of the option of traveling by boat into the beautiful sound and out to the Gulf of Alaska.
After our day in(and out) of Whittier, we happened to see a piece of Glacier that had broken off and was floating in the water. They refer to the process here as calving and this was a relatively small "calf".