OldWestNewWest.com: History & Travel Magazine

Feb 21st
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scenic drives

California's fabled Highway 1 is now open to vehicle and bicycle traffic just a few miles south of the community of Big Sur where a major rock slide that occurred on Sunday afternoon, Dec. 23, 2012, blocked both lanes.

Travelers should be aware that one-way traffic controls with flaggers will be in effect through the slide area, which remains a very active repair and cleanup zone. Motorists can expect 20 minute delays during this time.

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Emergency road crews expect to briefly open one lane of California Highway 1 south of Big Sur today, Dec. 27, 2012, to allow vehicular and bicycle traffic through the slide area, according to the California Department of Transportation (Caltrans).

Caltrans said one lane of the highway will only be opened at 8 a.m., noon and 4 p.m. today. The major rock slide that occurred on Sunday afternoon, Dec. 23 remains a very active and dynamic repair/cleanup zone, the agency said.
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California's scenic Highway 1 is closed in both directions roughly seven miles south of Big Sur due to a rock slide that occurred on Sunday, Dec. 23, 2012, at about 5 p.m.

According to a California Department of Transportation (Caltrans) spokesperson, the coastal highway is shut down at Partington Ridge Road (Mile Marker 39) and at Lucia (Mile Marker 23). There is no estimated time for re-opening the road.
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Ajo Mountain Drive at Organ Pipe Cactus National Monument in Arizona has reopened after being closed since Sept, 10, 2012 due to heavy monsoon flooding.

While the 21-mile scenic drive is open again, visitors are cautioned to watch for continuing maintenance work, including large trucks. As always, trailers, buses and RVs over 25 feet are not permitted.
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Winter-like conditions of drifting snow, high winds and below-freezing temperatures above 10,000 feet have caused rangers at Rocky Mountain National Park in Colorado to close the historic Trail Ridge Road for the season to through travel.

"We continue to get snowfall at high elevations combined with strong winds," park superintendent Vaughn Baker said Oct. 17, 2012. "The snow will continue to blow and drift at higher elevations, making snow clearing operations and driving conditions extremely hazardous."
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From California's iconic coast to dramatic deserts and the magnificent High Sierra, the great California road trip is on just about everyone's bucket list. So what could be a better combination than pairing it with the California wine country?

With a little planning, you can include amazing wine regions in your adventures, from hidden gem off-the-beaten path regions like the Sierra Foothills and Temecula to the most well-traveled, such as Sonoma, Napa and Paso Robles.
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Caltrans crews have reopened California Highway 1 at Pitkins Curve/Rain Rocks (Mile Marker 21.3), about 25 miles south of Big Sur, after removing rocks and debris that came tumbling down March 28, 2012.

The highway, which reopened April 5 at 4 p.m. after its final eight-hour closure period, is now back to normal 24/7 operations. One-way traffic control with signals at each end of the rock shed/ bridge project will be in effect as it was prior to the slide.
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UPDATE 2: Caltrans will shut down California Highway 1 about 25 miles south of Big Sur from 8 a.m. until 4 p.m. on Tuesday, April 3, 2012 for crane and demolition repair work.

The area at Pitkins Curve/Rain Rocks (Mile Marker 21.3) was hit by a major rock slide on March 28, closing lanes in both directions just south of the ongoing rock shed project.
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UPDATE: Caltrans has reopened Highway 1 to traffic. The agency announced that as of 1:30 p.m. Tuesday, Jan. 31, the coastal road is once again able to safely handle vehicles.

ORIGINAL STORY: California Department of Transportation (Caltrans) officials said Jan. 30 that Highway 1, closed by a rock slide about 25 miles south of Big Sur, should reopen by midweek.

When it does reopen, Highway 1 will remain under one-way traffic signal controls as it was prior to the slide.

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Mother Nature once again indefinitely closed the fabled California Highway 1 coastal route Monday, Jan. 23, 2012, due to a major rock slide 25 miles south of Big Sur.

Heavy winter rains swept into Central California Sunday, drenching the rugged and steep hillsides, loosening tons of rocks and debris. This current major rock slide is near the small town of Lucia, and closed Highway 1 (Post Mile 22) near Limekiln Creek in both north and south directions.
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No longer a part of the United States Highway System, Route 66 today is a highway of legend. During its short lifetime Route 66 was the popular path westward from Chicago to Los Angeles, winding its way through seven states.

In 1985 it was decommissioned, bypassed by the faster, straighter, wider Interstate 40 and other concrete highways. Portions remain however, and tourists and fans will find those bits and pieces if they look for the Historic Route 66 designation.
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Another dazzling fall colors season is being forecast for Utah Valley, south of Salt Lake City, Utah, by area resorts and businesses as they gear up for autumn festivals and harvest events.

"Utah's impressive display of fall foliage entices both Utah residents and out-of-state visitors to spend more time outdoors and visit the painted peaks throughout our state," said Joel Racker, President and CEO of the Utah Valley Convention and Visitors Bureau (UVCVB). "This year brought an increased amount of moisture to the mountains and we are eager to see how that may boost the brilliance of this year's colors."
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UPDATE: On Thursday afternoon, June 9, Caltrans announced it had fully re-opened California Highway 1 to all traffic at Alder Creek just north of the Monterey County / San Luis Obispo County line.

Original Story: California's scenic coastal Highway 1 will re-open to motorists by Friday, June 10, 2011 after Caltrans crews finish clearing away the last truck loads of mountain rocks and debris that closed the route in both directions 40 miles south of Big Sur.

"It could be sooner," a Caltrans spokesperson said, "but it will definitely be by Friday. It's up to the contractor to tell us when the road is ready to re-open."
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California's coastal Highway 1 once again is open to southbound traffic between Monterey and Big Sur, but remains closed for visitors wanting to head north to Big Sur from San Luis Obispo.

"Highway 1 at Rocky Creek is open to all traffic 24/7 with no weight or length restrictions under one-way signalized traffic control," said Colin Jones, a California Department of Transportation (Caltrans) spokesperson.
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A new rock slide along California's scenic Highway 1 has added to the problems of re-opening the section of the coastal highway from Carmel to Cambria for at least a month, the California Department of Transportation (Caltrans) said.

Geologic instability and more debris falling on Highway 1 at Alder Creek on April 15, 2011 required the roadway to be closed in both directions for at least a month, a Caltrans spokesperson said. Alder Creek is south of Nacimiento-Fergusson Road.
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As if Big Sur's tourist businesses and campgrounds didn't have enough to worry about because of a chunk of Highway 1 sliding into the sea, now a mudslide has closed another section of California's scenic road.

A series of heavy March storms have been pounding the California coast, and Thursday, March 24, 2011 a section of saturated hillside gave way about 25 miles south of Big Sur at Limekiln Creek, closing both lanes with rocks and mud.
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It will be at least a month before temporary repairs can be made to allow California's coastal Highway 1 near the resort area of Big Sur to reopen to traffic, California Department of Transportation (Caltrans) engineers have determined.

"An emergency contractor will be on board by the end of today (Friday, March 18) to begin working on a temporary fix to get traffic on the roadway as soon as safely possible," according to Susana Z. Cruz, Caltrans District 5 public information officer.
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If you've never driven the majectic Big Sur Coast Highway, California Route One, you need to add it to your bucket list. Seriously. If you've driven along the highway, but it's been awhile, there's never been a better time of year for you to go see it again.

Located between Central California's historic city of Monterey and the town of San Simeon, of Hearst Castle fame, Big Sur Coast Highway 1 hugs the California coast, providing access to austere, windswept cypress trees, fog-shrouded cliffs and the crashing surf of the Pacific Ocean.
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California State Parks is notifying hundreds of campers headed for the Big Sur area that although a portion of California's coastal Highway 1 is closed, all state park campgrounds remain open with all reservations honored.

Those campgrounds include Pfeiffer Big Sur State Park, Andrew Molera State Park, Julia Pfeiffer Burns State Park, and Point Sur Lightstation State Historic Park.
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A portion of California's scenic two-lane Highway 1 in Monterey County is closed to traffic due to a 40-foot section of the road that slipped into the Pacific Ocean on March 16, 2011.

The closure will have a significant impact on southbound tourists planning to visit California state parks in the Big Sur area.
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