Harrison Farm

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100 Miles + Haunted Tunnel

Last Sunday I rode my first “century” (100 miles).

It was an out-and-back ride up the Maipo canyon (there were flatter, less scenic routes I could have taken instead).

I made myself take it easy, knowing that that was the only way I could make it back under my own power. The whole ride took nearly ten hours (including about 40 mins of breaks).

Map

I made it to within about 15 miles of Argentina!

At the farthest point of the ride, I was in a “Volcano danger zone”. This is roughly where I turned around… this is the kind of scenery that makes it worth riding this far:

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Now for the “Haunted Tunnel” part you’ve all been waiting for.

On my way up the canyon I came upon this:

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See that tunnel going into the mountainside?

I rode my bike up to the mouth and walked in a ways.  It disappeared into complete darkness.

My curiosity sparked, but a little disappointed that I didn’t know what was in there or where it went, I rode back down to the pavement and continued up the canyon.

A little further up I found the other side of the tunnel:

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On my way back home, I stopped at this end of the tunnel.

Knowing that it couldn’t be much more than a quarter mile long, I wanted to see if I could walk all the way through.

There was a man sitting next to the mouth of the tunnel. He seemed to be working on some metal device.

Normally, I wouldn’t ask permission or approval from a Chilean before doing something dangerous or “unofficial”, because they’re usually risk-averse and prone to blind obedience.

But in this case, I was doubtful enough that I was willing to do what this man recommended.

He told me that it was safe, and to go ahead.

I pulled off my sunglasses and started to put them on my helmet, but he told me to leave them on until I couldn’t see anything, then remove them. It would help my eyes adjust.

I started off riding, but the road was dangerously uneven so I dismounted and walked. It was getting really dark… I took off my sunglasses and got temporary relief. The tunnel got darker and darker until I could barely see anything.

I was about to turn around when I saw the light at the other side. The tunnel has a slight bend in it that keeps you from being able to see one side from the other.

I walked straight towards the light. I was now completely blind to what was around me, because I was facing the primary light source, instead of it being behind me. I almost bumped into one of the tunnel walls at one point.

It was a bit creepy, but I’m glad I did it. I want to go back there and do it again sometime.

I did a bit of research on the tunnel when I got home.

It’s called the Tinoco tunnel.

It was built in 1903 as a railroad tunnel and was used up until the 80’s.

Since then it’s been used by tourists and locals who want to take a shortcut.

It’s a little over 600 meters long.

In the 90’s a teenager committed suicide in the tunnel, and since then there’s been a rumor that his ghost is in the tunnel.

Here’s a picture of the inside:

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1 Comment

  1. That’s an incredible story!! Mama Stephy says…next time maybe a flashlight?!? ;o)
    I stopped upon your family’s blog to wish S a very happy birthday, for I’ve lost your email address.
    Please tell everyone that we say hello!
    Stephy

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