Tunnel - BNSF Railroad Snow Sheds

Stampede Pass, WA

Snow avalanches are always a potential hazard for railroads in some of the mountain regions, and these snow sheds provide protection for the rail line on the east and west ends of the 2-mile long Stampede Pass railroad tunnel. Large, L-shaped units, with a vertical leg 2' thick x 4' wide x 33' high and a horizontal leg 3' thick x 4' wide x 12' long, are joined by a bolted connection and structural slab at the top to form a rigid frame capable of carrying hundreds of feet of snow in the event of an avalanche.


  • 300 pieces - L-shaped units 33 feet high x 12 feet wide


Use of precast elements minimized the amount of on-site concrete needed at the remote mountain location.
Prefabricated frame units allowed rapid construction in a high elevation location with a short construction season.


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