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Old 12-13-2007, 01:53 PM   #1
2on2off
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Central Ca. Mountain Dirt and Paved Road Status

I'd like this thread to be a resourse for us winter riders. I'd like people to post what the conditions are like on the roads in the Central California Mountains from week to week and ride to ride as I plan to ride in the mountains all winter long and have never done this before.

We have great roads to ride in the summer and they can be just as much fun in the winter if we know where it is safe to ride based on the current weather conditons and road conditions.

Just talked with the Ranger Station offices at North Fork, Prather and Dunlap.

The dirt roads arounds Sequoia Lake and Milwood are closed for the winter.

Black Rock Road is closed at Black Rock Campground which is were I believe the dirt road begins and the pavement ends.

Central Camp Road is still open in Bass Lake with some snow on the ground.

This time of year, even if a remote dirt road is open, any road on the north side of a hill above 4 or 5,000 feel elevation that has had snow on it, can become very icy from snow that melts and then refreezes. Some of these roads are unrideable in these conditions.

Report in if you have been on any dirt or paved roads in the mountains recently so all of us can keep informed on where it is safe to ride.

I also called Hartland Christian Camp and found out the last two miles into their camp can remain icy all winter if there has been a recent snow.

The ranger at North Fork said the Minerette Road can become very icy near mile high curve where there is a turnout where you can see Mammoth Pools.

Highway 245 was fine as of last Sunday going north to Pinehurst. There was some slush in some of the corners but it was ok. I didn't ride north of Pinehurst so I can't say what it was like in that area.
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Old 12-14-2007, 05:32 AM   #2
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Re: Central Ca. Mountain Dirt and Paved Road Status

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Originally Posted by 2on2off View Post
I'd like this thread to be a resourse for us winter riders. I'd like people to post what the conditions are like on the roads in the Central California Mountains from week to week and ride to ride as I plan to ride in the mountains all winter long and have never done this before.

We have great roads to ride in the summer and they can be just as much fun in the winter if we know where it is safe to ride based on the current weather conditons and road conditions.
Jim, great idea. I will stay alert for Hwy 1 closures due to slides this winter and post them up here. This would be the southern section of Pacific Coast Highway between Morro Bay and San Francisco.

Just a thought, but a cool idea might be to create a Google Map like Tim has developed for CA Moto Roads. The map markers indicating the mountain and back roads could have a pop up saying it's currently open or closed, or link to the CA Dept of Transportation web site listing current road issues by entering the road designator. I think the Map idea would be a fun project to help inform on the winter mountain and off road riding conditions.
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Old 12-14-2007, 07:32 AM   #3
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Re: Central Ca. Mountain Dirt and Paved Road Status

As of 12/14/07, the road to Cedar Grove is closed for the winter. The road in and around Grants Grove and both the north and south roads into Hume Lake have snow and ice on them. Not a good place to ride to right now.

Has anyone heard about the road to Mineral King. Is it open or closed and if closed, how far can you ride in?
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Old 12-14-2007, 09:28 AM   #4
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Re: Central Ca. Mountain Dirt and Paved Road Status

Good idea Jim. I like riding those high (paved) roads in the winter so it would be nice to share information on road conditions. Sad to see Cedar grove and the top part of 245 iced up for the winter, two of my favorite rides. I guess that only leaves us about 10,000 miles of good roads to ride until spring .
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Old 12-14-2007, 10:08 AM   #5
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Re: Central Ca. Mountain Dirt and Paved Road Status

Jim, this is awesome - thank you for starting this. I'll be happy to contribute as much as possible, as I love this kind of riding, and feel so fortunate to have it in our backyard...
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Old 12-15-2007, 09:26 PM   #6
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Re: Central Ca. Mountain Dirt and Paved Road Status

The rain and snow are coming in a few days so tomorrow may be one of the last days to ride some of the mountain roads before they get snowed and iced in for the winter.

But then again, there can be some adventure in camping in the snow and ice.......
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Old 12-16-2007, 07:24 AM   #7
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Re: Central Ca. Mountain Dirt and Paved Road Status

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Originally Posted by 2on2off View Post
The rain and snow are coming in a few days so tomorrow may be one of the last days to ride some of the mountain roads before they get snowed and iced in for the winter.

But then again, there can be some adventure in camping in the snow and ice.......

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Old 12-16-2007, 09:55 AM   #8
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Re: Central Ca. Mountain Dirt and Paved Road Status

great idea Jim!

I'm not riding this week, but this could be a great resource throughout Winter.

See Ya
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Old 12-16-2007, 07:24 PM   #9
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Re: Central Ca. Mountain Dirt and Paved Road Status

We had great road condition on todays ride from Humphrey Station to Auberry to Jose Basin Road to Italian Bar Road to Mammoth Pool Road to North Fork and back.

Be careful of roads that are on the north side of any mountain above 2,000 feet. We rode through some patches of snow on the road. The problem with "patchy" snow is that you are lulled into thinking the road is clear and then around the next turn, wham, there is snow and ice which will cause you to go down if you are riding too fast and can't see what is around the corner.

By tomorrow evening, with the new storm coming in, these conditons will change drastically on the route I rode today. I'm sure there will be snow, slush and ice on all the roads I was on today above 3,000 feet, especially the sections of road that are on the north side of the mountains.

Watch out for conditions like this around corners where you can't see ahead:
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Old 12-17-2007, 04:48 AM   #10
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Re: Central Ca. Mountain Dirt and Paved Road Status

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Originally Posted by 2on2off View Post
As of 12/14/07, the road to Cedar Grove is closed for the winter. The road in and around Grants Grove and both the north and south roads into Hume Lake have snow and ice on them. Not a good place to ride to right now.

Has anyone heard about the road to Mineral King. Is it open or closed and if closed, how far can you ride in?
I was up in Silver City 2 weekends ago. Both gates are locked. Only those with proper sequences of numbers in their heads can get up there until May.
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