Highway to close at 5 pm

Today’s Date: March 5, 2019 at 9:45 am

District:            05 – Santa Barbara, San Luis Obispo, Monterey, San Benito and Santa

Cruz Counties

Contact:          Susana Z Cruz (bilingual) or Colin Jones

Phone:            (805) 549-3138 or 549-3189




MONTEREY COUNTY — Caltrans has received confirmation from National Weather Service (NOAA) data that a significant storm will reach the areas of Mud Creek (PM 8.9) and Paul’s Slide (PM 21.6) on State Route 1 in the Big Sur area this evening. The Highway 1 closure, for traveler safety, will include the areas of Mud Creek and Paul’s Slide, closing today, Tuesday, March 5 at 5 pm until further notice. SEE ATTACHED CLOSURE MAP.

 The closure initiation process will begin at 3 PM with Electronic Message Signs activated and both sets of gates (Mud Creek and Paul’s Slide) closed by 5 pm today.  Storm activity is currently forecast through Thursday, March 7.

Businesses along the Big Sur Coast on Hwy. 1 remain open and are accessible via Hwys 101, 68, 46.

Caltrans’ Geotech, Maintenance and Construction units are on call and prepared to inspect/clean up when the storm ends during the daylight hours and it is safe to be onsite again—we currently anticipate this to be Thursday, March 7 (weather dependent).  Caltrans’ goal is to open the roadway as quickly and safely as possible and our staff remains on-call 24/7.

The gates on either side of Mud Creek and Paul’s Slide will be key locked. These gates will not be manned when the highway is closed and there will be no access to anyone, including Emergency Services or Caltrans employees until a proper assessment can be made and any necessary cleanup has been completed.

NOTE: Both Mud Creek and Paul’s Slide will close today. An update will be provided by the afternoon of Thursday, March 7 or sooner.

Tourist Tuesday – The Gringo Trail

I have been covering this weekly subject for quite a while now – over a year. As I said the last time, we all know what the problem is, but it is now time to move out of identifying the problem and into finding solutions. I will no longer be reporting on the problems, but now, focusing on the solutions, instead.

In 2016, we started this process at Treebones, then all hell broke loose in our world- Soberanes, then Mud Creek – and it wasn’t until 2018 that we were able to reorganize and get all the stakeholders together for a series of meetings at Lisa Kleissner’s house. This has lead to a variety of approaches which are now taking shape, but focusing on developing our own Sustainable Destination Management Plan. We are in the process of bringing that to our community with some national and international leaders to help us facilitate. Look for an announcement here in the next few months for a community meeting on this project to hopefully meet a couple people who we think can help guide us in this project and on this process.

In researching one of these international leaders, on Sunday, I found this, and wanted to post it for Tourist Tuesday. Unfortunately, I did that through YouTube, not through my own website, so it went up immediately, rather than today, as I intended. The post was incomplete, so I rescheduled it to today. I apologize to those of you who get the email notifications. There were many things I wanted to add, besides the trailer, and so here it is.


The above is just the trailer, but the entire feature length documentary can be purchased for $3.99.  One can find the places to purchase this video here: http://gringotrails.com/support-2/

Currently, as some of you are aware, CABS Board, Friends of Garrapatta, and other individuals, two professors at CSUMB are doing a case study on the effect of overtourism on Big Sur. They are both PhDs and professors in the Sustainable Hospitality Department, and are very interested in investigating the problems we have had here, from the back country to the highway, and the roll tourism has played into these problems and the solutions that can be implemented. They are also looking at the MCCVB and See California tourism industries to see what solutions can be obtained in conjunction with their efforts to enhance the tourist experience. I don’t expect the results to be available soon, but when they are, I am hopeful I can share them with you. Until then, attend the B-SAGE  event on March 30th and bring your ideas to the solutions board. If I don’t make it, (road/weather/whatever) can someone take a picture of it at the end of the day and send it to me??