Flat Top Tunnel
Type Tunnel
Location The Polar Express route
"There is but one inch of clearance between the roof of this rattler and the roof of Flat Top Tunnel."
— The Hobo explaining Flat Top Tunnel to Hero Boy

Flat Top Tunnel is a tunnel which appears in the film.

Role in the Film

The Polar Express runs through Flat Top Tunnel on its way to the North Pole. According to the Hobo, there is less than one inch of clearance between the tunnel's roof and the train's. The entrance to the tunnel resembles the face of a monster with the train going through its "mouth" and icicles representing the teeth.

In the film, the Hobo helps Hero Boy get to the front of the train before it enters the tunnel by skiing down the passenger cars. Hero Boy manages to land into the tender just in time, but the Hobo disappears.

In the deleted scene, "It Takes Two", Smokey and Steamer tell Hero Boy and Hero Girl about how the Hobo decided to ride on the roof of the train one Christmas Eve, but ends up getting killed when the train goes through the tunnel. Afterwards, some say his ghost can be seen riding the train every Christmas Eve.


  • Flat Top Tunnel does not appear in the book.
  • According to Jerome Chen, the animators created a set that was scaled down to a couple of miles for the scene with the Hobo on top of the train because a normal-scaled set would have been to big.
Grand Rapids, MI Grand Rapids, Michigan Hero Boy's House Herpolsheimer's 11344 Edbrooke Avenue
The Journey Flat Top Tunnel Glacier Gulch Ice Lake
North Pole North Pole North Pole Square Communications Room Sorting Room
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