Flett Tunnel

This easy hike through the abandoned Flett Railway Tunnel northwest of Thunder Bay is an interesting reminder of our early transportation heritage.

Roundtrip: 5km
Difficulty: Easy
Location: Shabaqua, ON

Click Here for GPS Map

I have posted a few railway tunnels in the region on this site. And while the tunnel near Flett Siding isn’t nearly as long as the one previously posted at Jumbo’s Cove, and it is the only former railway tunnel that you can actually drive through. It is about 300 metres in length.

From Thunder Bay head West on highway 11/17 toward Kakabeka Falls for 40 km. Turn right onto Finmark Road and drive for 4.3km then turn left onto Flett Road and drive for 1.7km to the old railway bed which is now a forest access road. This road is only suitable for off-road vehicles. Hike down the road and through the tunnel.

If you are up for another adventure in the area try checking out McGraw Falls.

26 thoughts on “Flett Tunnel”

  1. Once through the tunnel, the road continues. This used to be a large wooden train trestle but the whole works was filled up with rock.

  2. Went today – one of my top spots in the area. Only thing: I read that if you walked through the tunnel and past a bit, there was an old bridge that the trains used to go on but I walked about 6km after the tunnel and didn’t find it. Any advice?

  3. Just went today. It was super cool. Took a little while to find. It just looks like an intersection for another road and on the left side it has what looks like a house number marker with the number 391 on it. It’s not too far down that road before you’ll find the tunnel.

  4. Fantastic tunnel. Road is in pretty good shape. Directions are about 6.2 km from the highway not the 4.3 indicated above. The old rail bed intersects with Flett Road. When you see the intersection it will be fairly obvious that it was a previous rail bed because it is so flat and straight in either direction. Turn Left onto it and follow it in to the tunnel. Well worth it.If it’s dry, most vehicles could likely drive right through!

  5. Looked for this last week… I think I was at the beginning of the Bush road… there was a thick cable cord across the bush road and a no trespassing sign nailed to the near by tree… was I in the right location? I really would love to see this… on my bucket list of hikes… any other ways in??? Directions anyone???

  6. Awesome spot! It was much easier to find then I thought and you can totally drive through the tunnel with any vehicle!
    If ever you get confused, the local houses were more then happy to help my friends and I out and they were very friendly!

  7. Quite an amazing experience to walk through the tunnel. I went a few years ago with my kids and we had a great afternoon there. We found out about it from this website, so thank you! Wasn’t really a hike though, since you could drive right up to it. Granted, you could stop earlier and walk, but I kept driving as long as the road let me, not realizing the road went right through the tunnel!

  8. Was there on Tuesday (July 23rd, 2013). Saw no indication of privacy or trespassing warnings, but that that isn’t to say such claims are untrue- just that one need not worry too much about law-breaking while checking out the tunnel.

    …Worry more about the aforementioned “falling rock”.

    Here’s a (fb) link to an interesting photo shot in the tunnel “entrance”.


  9. We were there last week and the road is in good shape. I was to find this website. If you haven’t been here yet it is worth the trip. Easy to get to and interesting to see

  10. I appreciate your update on the directions Al! I’m glad to hear the rock has been cleaned up too!

  11. The road all the way to the tunnel is quite clear – logging is underway in the area – easy passage in a standard vehicle. The directions are a little off, Flett Road is 6.1K from the highway (not 4.3).
    Pretty cool to see and the rock has been cleaned up quite a bit – probably with the logging traffic.

  12. We live 5 mins from this tunnel. There is some amazing hiking to be done here. You can access the tunnel from the railbed. It is not privately owned. The land to the left of the tunnel is crown land, the land to the right is privately owned.

    If you pass through the tunnel and head down the railbed to the curve you will find some even better hiking.

  13. Regarding the tresspassing, Last i was up there this summer there were signs “Enter at your own risk, private property” Or something along those lines. Seems the owner is just looking out for his own well being in the event someone was to get hurt in the tunnel.

  14. I am unaware of an alternate route. The forest access road and the tunnel are on private property – falling rock is common in the area as well.

  15. I’m not sure where I heard about Flett Tunnel first. It is a pretty popular spot that I had heard about a number of times from hikers and cyclists alike.

  16. I found out about this little gem this summer while doing some research believe it or not on the Ogoki water diversion project. On the Aug. long weekend in the rain we went out to see if we could find it. Not many people know this tunnel even exists. How did you find out about it? If you check on Google Earth there are some pictures of our quest.

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