Kiss the Road good-bye until Spring

These were today at Paul’s Slide. Photos by Brendon Shave. I’m not an expert, but I don’t see how anyone can even work on this mess until the rains stop. There are 11-12 photos, and while I could and maybe should put them in a slide show, I sent myself smaller versions:



40 thoughts on “Kiss the Road good-bye until Spring

  1. I just hope people stay safe working on it. Just seeing the bulldozer there is scary! Its not worth losing another person in all of this mess.
    And thank you Kate as always for keeping us informed.

  2. How lucky that nobody was working on top of that when it fell in; the scary thing is that we may see this same thing happening in one or two other places along Highway 1 before winter is over (and I see there’s another several days of rain coming President’s Weekend)

  3. I can’t imagine being the equipment operator knowing the lane next to me landed in the ocean! His hands are definitely bigger than our prez’!

  4. I’ve lived here for over forty six years and have never seen it that bad. Even the two hundred year floods we had in the late 90’s were not this bad.

  5. Road crew and everyone, be super careful! I was in Big Sur in 1973 when the road washed out at the Coast Gallery. It was not a good time! So dangerous!

  6. Lloyd, I’d vote for “83 in 83”. In 1983 at least one area in Big Sur measured 83″ of rain. Partington residents were caught between slides for a couple of months and the road cut in two for a year by a slide north of JP Burns

  7. Great photos as always. Thanks for posting them and all the info you have supplied over the years. I live in the Highlands and don’t know where the slide is located.

  8. Incredible. Priority: It’s time to add ground sensors for all of Monterey County’s Hwy 1. These hiccups for these slides to surprise us all needs to come to an end. How does one bring a project this large to take effect?

  9. Whoa….thanks Kate. Gonna be a long-haul to back-to-normal. Hang in, everyone.

  10. I’m looking for a soil sensor movement sensor map and you say there is one, correct? Could it be in an unmarked section?

  11. Yeah, I thought the USGS (if it had one) would have made a map of those points somewhere, but, maybe those locations are classified or wasn’t a plan it wanted to explore, odd.

  12. Is the wooden tressel like structure on the ocean side of the slide old bracing of some kind? Interesting.

  13. Yes, it is cribbing, Karl, but it is buckling, and parts of it are now down the hillside, so that will be gone by month’s end, if rain predictions hold true.


  14. I do not know, but there was a lot of cribbing done in the 60’s and 70’s, I think. That’s what gave out at Rocky Creek and took 4 months to repair, as I recall. I have some data on that on my blog somewhere.


  15. i was the last place before the fall, and it was real eerie while the road was closed. so silent; as i usually hear the traffic of the highway echo up the ravine.

  16. Kate, current weather in village has strange wispy glowing fog in the shape of a horseshoe or pitchfork and cut off fog in the shape of a round circle island. Ahh, the moon is showing off all its highlights inside these clouds..

  17. Maybe it’s time to re-route Highway 1 inland in the vulnerable landslide areas. Does anyone know if that’s even been considered?

  18. Yes , like Connie remembers 1983 , as it rained 8″ in two hours at River Inn , and that caused Phenegar Creek mud n rock flow , to wipe out the B S Garage and Post Office , there. Apple Pie road became a river too . Double Ouch !

  19. This may sound like a silly question but if road is closed all along that stretch can people still get to their homes? I dont live there but my sister does. How important is that road other than the fact that it is probably the most beautiful drive in the country? Could it be closed permanently?

  20. Between the slide at Cow Cliff and Paul’s Slide, no one can get in or out for now. Unless you sister lives at Big Creek, Circle M, Morning Glory, Lucia, the Hermitage or Point 16, she should be able to get in or out. As for this area, Cal Trans should be able to clear at least one lane for locals in a few days with the break in the weather. It may not hold though with another atmospheric river setting up for next week through the end of the month.

  21. Doug Walling – Don’t recall a mudslide down Pheneger in 83, I’d have to ask Mom. The first time was 73 when the grocery, post office and garage got wiped out. Winter after the Molara fire. Grandpa E and Walt were working with a dozer in the canyon near where Don’s stuff is now and almost didn’t hear the mudslide in time to get out of the way. Didn’t the PO move up to where the MAF is for a bit before heading further up the hill. Remember Carmel HS students came down on the weekend to try and save the furniture that was mud soaked. Furniture was transported up to Post’s and we worked on it there.

  22. Who knows? Originally I thought it would be mud creek, then I shifted to Paul’s Slide, and now, it looks like the Pfeiffer Canyon Bridge.

  23. my rough measure is 60+ inches of rain so far and we’ve months to go yet…
    the days between the rains are fabulously beautiful, and then the rain is lovely too. we wanted rain, laughing, boy howdy we got it!

  24. I think the slides (3) of 83 were the worst I remember.
    We lost “Skinner” to the Limeklin slide. He was one of the best heavy equipment operators, but he got too close to the edge of the stuff and we never found him or hid D9. Almost lost Walter Trotter that same day.
    Early 80’s we had two100 year storms in Monterey.

  25. As a lifelong Big Sur resident in my heart, as my body now lives in Morro Bay, I am sending lots of healing sunshine energy, in between the storms of course, and praying life returns to some sort of normalcy for all very soon. Somewhere in the garage I have a picture of a crush of mine, smiling in front of Dicks Store from the summer before the mud took it out. We used to camp all summer, every summer at Big Sur Campground, Berley Farber used to carry me around and I would go on dumpster runs with Buster, ahhh. I was living at Fernwood during 85 when we only lost the highway to the north. People then would talk of 83, as well as 73. Kate, thank you for all you do, if there is anything I can provide from the south south coast, please get in touch with me!

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