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CA-39 - No More Rock Debris!

Old 05-05-12, 08:34 PM
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rallison
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CA-39 - No More Rock Debris!

Best I've seen it in a long time:
For comparison, just a month ago:
More photos of 39 conditions as of today
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Old 05-06-12, 10:47 AM
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Was wondering when someone was going to post having been up 39 to Dawson. Looks like you had a nice day for it. Might have to give it a try one afternoon this coming week. Great pics as usual.
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Old 05-06-12, 11:38 AM
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love it!
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Old 05-06-12, 11:49 AM
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Wow, what a difference.
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Old 05-17-12, 03:17 AM
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I came down that road to Crystal Lake from Angeles Crest last weekend and it wasn't too bad. Some debris to dodge, but rideable.

I did see a group of 4 big horn sheep scale a cliffside there, which was pretty amazing to see. They were just flying around on these tiny little ledges. According to the folks at Crystal Lake Cafe, they're keeping the road closed because these animals are hanging around the road quite a bit, so I recommend checking it out!
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Old 05-17-12, 03:30 PM
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Originally Posted by bdm1213 View Post
I did see a group of 4 big horn sheep scale a cliffside there, which was pretty amazing to see. They were just flying around on these tiny little ledges. According to the folks at Crystal Lake Cafe, they're keeping the road closed because these animals are hanging around the road quite a bit, so I recommend checking it out!
Yes! Last October, I saw a ram on that closed stretch, just tooling around what looked like a nearly vertical cliff face about thirty (40? 50?) feet above the road. Never seen one in these mountains before, and it was so fleeting I've often wondered if I was wrong about it. Very cool.
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Old 05-17-12, 03:56 PM
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I've never seen any of those sheep but I look for them every time. Maybe they see me coming and skedaddle out of there! I did come around a corner on the closed section of 39 (once) to find a big bear sitting in the road.

Fortunately I scared him (or her), so no worries!

Rick / OCRR
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Old 05-17-12, 03:59 PM
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Alright I'm gonna have to go check this stretch of road out.

I wonder how much bonus climbing you can get from doing that section from Crystal lake to angels crest?
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Old 05-17-12, 04:01 PM
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Is that the stretch of hwy 39 between Angeles Crest Hwy and the gate just past Crystal lake Rd.?
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Old 05-17-12, 04:28 PM
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^Yes
I am going to do it but I think I will wait for temperatures to cool off a bit.
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Old 05-17-12, 04:36 PM
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Originally Posted by jmX View Post
Alright I'm gonna have to go check this stretch of road out.

I wonder how much bonus climbing you can get from doing that section from Crystal lake to angels crest?
Here you go: https://app.strava.com/rides/1718274 this includes a tiny part of the 2 and Crystal Lake so gains are around 1200ft for that stretch, it is much much easier than below Crystal Lake
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Old 05-17-12, 07:03 PM
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I am definitely going to have to try that next time I get up there!
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Old 05-17-12, 07:12 PM
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I'd like to try GMR->GRR->Baldy Ski Lifts->GRR->East Fork->39->Crystal Lake->Angels Crest->East Fork->GMR.

Ride with GPS is giving ridiculous numbers for it, but I bet its near 113mi / 15,000 ft climbing. Would have plenty of water opportunities for self supported rides, and food at Baldy and Crystal lake. Could make for a nice self supported epic.

https://ridewithgps.com/routes/1187925
112.7 miles, +17974 feet

Last edited by jmX; 05-17-12 at 07:21 PM.
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Old 05-17-12, 07:33 PM
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I did GMR-GRR-Ski Lifts-GRR-East Fork- Crystal Lake a while bike, it was pretty tough, but we went really slow and took tons of breaks.

https://app.strava.com/rides/5675976

Got 100 miles and ~13,000k ft climbing

Climbing east fork at the end would have been really tough.
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Old 05-17-12, 07:52 PM
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Originally Posted by fishymamba View Post
I did GMR-GRR-Ski Lifts-GRR-East Fork- Crystal Lake a while bike, it was pretty tough, but we went really slow and took tons of breaks.

https://app.strava.com/rides/5675976

Got 100 miles and ~13,000k ft climbing

Climbing east fork at the end would have been really tough.
Nice ride! So backside GMR is worth another 1,900ft and Crystal lake up to Angels crest is another 1,400ft. Add that to your 13,700ft and the full ride would be 17,000ft. Its actually probably a little less, as you used the mobile app which is a little more generous on climbing numbers compared to a garmin with altimeter, so maybe mid-high 16k. Still....yikes.
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Old 07-09-12, 04:36 PM
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On Saturday, I rode from West Fork to the Crystal Lake Cafe then on to Dawson Saddle via the closed section of CA 39. It is still quite clear of debris. Started at 6:45 am and the weather was perfect. Met up at the cafe with a buddy of mine who is doing the Death Ride next weekend; he started at Santa Fe Dam for extra miles and climbing. That closed section of 39 is spectacularly beautiful. I hope Caltrans reconsiders and keeps working on it. The large majority of the roadbed has been rebuilt. I think there was only one small section that was one lane. There was also one small section with water on the road that needs improved drainage. But other than that, it just needs some fresh black top.

My computer crapped out for a while, but based on my buddies garmin I put in about 48 miles and about 7000 feet of climbing (all of which was in the first 26 miles). What a ride. I'll be doing that one at least once a month until the snow flies.
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Old 07-14-12, 09:17 PM
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We rode down 39 today and it was spotless on the closed part. Wish I could say the same below. Once we got the the West Fork is was jamed with people, diapers, and trash. Such a shame what people do.
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Old 07-15-12, 04:54 AM
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Originally Posted by cdp8 View Post
On Saturday, I rode from West Fork to the Crystal Lake Cafe then on to Dawson Saddle via the closed section of CA 39. It is still quite clear of debris. Started at 6:45 am and the weather was perfect. Met up at the cafe with a buddy of mine who is doing the Death Ride next weekend; he started at Santa Fe Dam for extra miles and climbing. That closed section of 39 is spectacularly beautiful. I hope Caltrans reconsiders and keeps working on it. The large majority of the roadbed has been rebuilt. I think there was only one small section that was one lane. There was also one small section with water on the road that needs improved drainage. But other than that, it just needs some fresh black top.

My computer crapped out for a while, but based on my buddies garmin I put in about 48 miles and about 7000 feet of climbing (all of which was in the first 26 miles). What a ride. I'll be doing that one at least once a month until the snow flies.
frankly...and i don't think i'm alone in this assessment...i pray caltrans never reopens it to automobile traffic but keeps it relatively clear of debris officially for the usfs and fire trucks.
i don't mind it being our little high-altitude bike path unofficially. when relatively clear of rockfall, the road is in decent shape. could it use repaving? of course but i feel the caltrans 'rockplows' are enough of a luxury considering the road is closed.
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Old 07-15-12, 07:06 AM
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Originally Posted by ooga-booga View Post
frankly...and i don't think i'm alone in this assessment...i pray caltrans never reopens it to automobile traffic but keeps it relatively clear of debris officially for the usfs and fire trucks.
i don't mind it being our little high-altitude bike path unofficially. when relatively clear of rockfall, the road is in decent shape. could it use repaving? of course but i feel the caltrans 'rockplows' are enough of a luxury considering the road is closed.
+1
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Old 07-15-12, 11:37 AM
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Originally Posted by ooga-booga View Post
frankly...and i don't think i'm alone in this assessment...i pray caltrans never reopens it to automobile traffic but keeps it relatively clear of debris officially for the usfs and fire trucks.
i don't mind it being our little high-altitude bike path unofficially. when relatively clear of rockfall, the road is in decent shape. could it use repaving? of course but i feel the caltrans 'rockplows' are enough of a luxury considering the road is closed.
While that is a nice thought, that is not going to happen. Caltrans wants to abandon Hwy. 39 entirely. Neither the city of Azusa nor the County of Los Angeles can afford to take over the road. IIRC the US Forest Service has also declined to take over the road. That means no maintenance for any purpose and the road above East Fork will be closed. For a few years it will be rideable, but it won't take very many winters before it becomes impassable.

I would rather have the road open to traffic than falling into disrepair.
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Old 07-15-12, 11:38 AM
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The Crystal Lake Cafe has a petition to keep Hwy. 39 open. I hope everyone that rides up to the cafe will sign the petition.
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Old 07-15-12, 02:27 PM
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Originally Posted by cdp8 View Post
While that is a nice thought, that is not going to happen. Caltrans wants to abandon Hwy. 39 entirely. Neither the city of Azusa nor the County of Los Angeles can afford to take over the road. IIRC the US Forest Service has also declined to take over the road. That means no maintenance for any purpose and the road above East Fork will be closed. For a few years it will be rideable, but it won't take very many winters before it becomes impassable.

I would rather have the road open to traffic than falling into disrepair.


yah cdp8, you are correct. vehicular traffic is preferable to no traffic, including ours. i suppose our rallying cry should be to ride this stretch as much as possible now before it gets shut down for good. the amount of rockfall in the san gabes is ridiculous and i think one winter and subsequent spring/summer of thawing/cracking/melting/sliding would be enough to render the majority of the road all but unrideable.
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Old 07-15-12, 05:03 PM
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Epic San Gabriels variation that I did last summer:
https://app.strava.com/rides/1044865
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Old 07-16-12, 11:55 AM
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Originally Posted by Ben FR View Post
Epic San Gabriels variation that I did last summer:
https://app.strava.com/rides/1044865
You beast! That's some serious climbing.
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Old 07-17-12, 05:11 PM
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39 is a big political football. Been closed since the 70's I think above Crystal Lake; though still an official road. Around 2005 or so CalTrans put out the proposal to reopen it. $39 million or something. Lot's of opposition to that. Not gonna happen. They'd like to abandon it to the locals now.
USFS says if it's abandoned, then it has to be restored to original condition - take out the road etc. The $ for that isn't there either.
No other jurisdiction wants to own it and have to maintain it.

Who knows what will happen.
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