I actually rode the 198 from Three Rivers to up past the Wuksachi Lodge and back last weekend. It's a fantastic ride! Regarding construction, as of last week they were working Mon-Thu, so if you're riding on one of those days, you'll likely have to stop and get a ride from the crew truck up a couple miles as jabantik00 mentioned. Fri-Sun was unrestricted when I went, so I just rode straight up.
The road was clear of snow/ice last weekend, but at over 7K feet, it's always something to look out for. I would recommend riding Crescent Meadow road once you get to the top of the main climb. It's the first right turn you can actually make up near the top. It's a narrow, windy road through giant sequoias that heads to moro rock (worth seeing!) and the fallen tunnel tree. It's only a few miles long, but worth checking out.