Sustainable Destination Stewardship Plan for Big Sur

Big Sur Sustainable Destination Stewardship Plan Update
And A Request for Input

Dear Big Sur Community Members,

Many thanks to all the community members who participated in meeting with Costas Christ of Beyond Green Travel during his visit in August.  CABS has now entered into a contract with Beyond Green Travel to move forward on a Destination Stewardship Plan for Big Sur. To learn more about this process, go to the “Initiatives” page on our website.

An important component of this work is collecting data on traffic.  CABS is coordinating with traffic engineers, Cal Trans and TAMC to consolidate existing data sets and reports on traffic volume as a preliminary step to establish where we are going in terms of gathering data for overall vehicle impact on the Highway. 

Residents from up and down the coast have expressed that capturing traffic counts in real time, 24-7, 365 days a year for multiple years is an important place to start. Three locations stand out as initial gathering locations: Mal Paso Creek Bridge, Nacimiento Rd and Highway 1 intersection and the southern county line. 

We believe that the residents who travel the highway on a regular basis may have insights that could inform the scope of this study. You can help us with the following question. Aside from these 3 locations, above, where else along the Highway or side roads would data on traffic volume be of value?

Please email your input on this question to info@cabigsur.org

Thanks!
CABS

Slice of Life on the South Coast: The challenges of simple errands and illegal campfires

My latest article for Voices of Monterey Bay is out. Here is the introduction:

I had an appointment on a Wednesday late last month with the Veterans Administration optometrist. It had been a while — six years, it turned out. I needed new glasses. It takes me two and one-half to three hours one way from Big Sur due to road construction and traffic. It is hard to do a round trip in a single day anymore.

The next day was the annual luncheon for the Monterey County Convention and Visitors Bureau. This is when they lay out the annual report for the current year, and the business plan for the next year. I find it valuable to understand the goals of this organization, how it’s intended to achieve them, and how MCCVB money is obtained and spent. Friday was the Democratic Women of Monterey County’s brunch with Adam Schiff. That afternoon, I had a second appointment with the VA optometrist.

Rather than fight traffic for three days, I stayed in town for those three nights so that I could accomplish all that I wanted to. which meant I only had to fight the traffic home on a single day; unfortunately it was the  Saturday of Labor Day weekend. Sigh. I vowed to relax and enjoy it — but I couldn’t relax. People would suddenly pull over with no warning, no signaling, making everyone behind them slam on their brakes. At least there was no road construction. And blissfully, Bixby was fogged in, so the traffic jam there was only a minor irritation.

But once I got to the dirt road to my home, the challenges increased. Saturday of Labor Day weekend. Lots of traffic on a one-lane dirt road made for an interesting drive. 

For the rest of this article, including my encounter with a nude man trying to get my attention, see: https://voicesofmontereybay.org/2019/09/11/slice-of-life-on-the-south-coast/

South Coast looking north in the fog

Best Buddies Bike ride this Saturday

Today’s Date: Tuesday, September 3, 2019

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

                         Cruz Counties

Contact:          Jim Shivers or Colin Jones

Phone:            (805) 549-3237 or (805) 549-3189

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

14th ANNUAL BEST BUDDIES CHALLENGE BICYCLE RIDE COMES TO THE CENTRAL COAST THIS SATURDAY

CENTRAL COAST – The 13th Annual Best Buddies Challenge Bicycle Ride will include the use of Highway 1 on Saturday, Sept. 7 beginning at the Quail Lodge on Carmel Valley Road at 7 am and finish at the Hearst Ranch Warehouse on San Simeon Road.

This event will include three additional starts at the Big Sur Station at 8:30 am, at Sand Dollar State Park at 10 am and at Ragged Point at 11 am.  

Traffic control for this non-competitive ride will include rolling closures by the California Highway Patrol (CHP) as the riders continue in a southerly direction. 

All riders will be off the road by 4 pm.

Electronic Message Boards will be posted alerting motorists to ‘Share the Road’ with cyclists.  Motorists can expect delays not to exceed 15 minutes. 

Caltrans reminds motorists to be aware of these cyclists and any support vehicles.  For more information regarding this event, please visit the Best Buddies Challenge website at: https://www.bestbuddieschallenge.org/hc/

                                    BEST BUDDIES ROUTE MAP BELOW

For traffic updates on other state highways on the Central Coast motorists can call Caltrans District 5 Public Affairs at (805) 549-3318

or visit the District 5 website at: https://dot.ca.gov/caltrans-near-me/district-5

                                                                 ###                                                            

Bill Monning Under the Persimmon Tree at HML

Friends,
I had the honor of being interviewed by Magnus Toren  at the Henry Miller Library last Sunday as part of the “Under the Persimmon Tree” series. I provide the link to the HML where you can find the Under the Persimmon Tree section and click on to the interview.  We discussed a wide range of history including UFW, IPPNW, Global Majority, family, Big Sur , etc 
If you suffer from insomnia, this will help you get to sleep!
Thank you, Magnus and you will find some other interesting interviews as part of the series. 
www.henrymiller.org  or google Henry Miller Library
Salud, Paz, Justicia
Bill

While not a Persimmon Tree, I can envision a story teller assembling a crowd here to tell some of the stories of Monterey Peninsula.

Tourist Tuesday, 8/27/19 — Emergency Response hampered by tourist traffic at Bixby Bridge

Today, I am going to forego my planned post on the “Invisible Costs of Tourism” to talk about a very real cost that many of us have been warning about for some time — that is traffic jams at Bixby and the impact on emergency response times. These costs are not monetary, they are to life and limb. I admit, I am biased. I lost my leg in an auto accident, and nearly lost my life. I am VERY aware that in emergency responses, time is a critical factor.

Medical Emergency on Highway One hampered by tourist traffic jam and road construction at Bixby Bridge.

There was a head-on collision at Big Creek yesterday, with several people injured, one critically. The CHP dispatcher wrote this:

12:07 PM8[24] A27-014 HEAVY TRAFF AT BIXBY / DOWN TO 1 LN / REQ 1141 BE ADVSD

Fortunately, Big Sur Fire is south of Bixby. Thankfully, Chief Matt Harris, and his supportive volunteer board is cross-training ALL volunteers not only for fire fighting, but for cliff-rescue as well as EMTs. They needed both for this incident, as is often the case. These are the men and women we count on, who are also there for our tourists. Please consider a donation to: http://Bigsurfire.org It is a completely voluntary organization dependent on donations and grants.

For the critical patient, our military neighbor, Fort Hunter Liggett, sent a medical helicopter. He was not able to land at Big Creek due to fog, so he landed at the Hermitage. Big Sur Fire, MCSO, AMR met him there and transferred the patient from the ambulance to the helicopter. Good job all, and I probably speak for the entire coast when I wish the patient a speedy and full recovery.

I would just like to note that all of these people involved are professionals, only one of which is not paid. Marcus Foster, and Big Sur Fire, I hold you in great regard. Thank you.

I should add, that in addition to the traffic problems at Bixby, there is currently road construction going on in the area which exacerbates the problem.

Photos by Brendon Shave:

Marcus Foster of Big Sur Fire

Vehicle over cliff — Big Sur

Sunday morning update: The driver of the vehicle has not been found and the search was called off as of 10 pm last night.

Here is an update:

Detail Information.
7:13 PM12[32] B27-068 1097 W/H70 NEG VISUAL ON VEH – UNK IF OCCPD
6:52 PM11[28] [Rotation Request Comment] 1039 CALIFORNIA TOW HD 831-424-8615
6:45 PM10[25] [Notification] [CHP]-PER MTYCOM/ NOW POSS WATER RESCUE / STATE PARKS 97 / SUBJ IN WATER WAVING THEIR ARMS / UNK IF FISHERMAND OR OCCPT OF THE VEH / COAST GAURD IS STARTING [Shared

Incident: 00367 Type: Trfc Collision-1141 Enrt Location: 55000 Sr1 Loc Desc: SR1 Lat/Lon: 36.125445 -121.637867 

Vehicle over Cliff about 100 ft down — this is near Esalen.

Detail Information
6:26 PM6[15] H70 ABOUT TO LIFT OFF, WILL ADVS ETA WHEN IN THE AIR
6:25 PM5[13] 1039 AIR OPS, ENRT NOW
6:23 PM4[10] MONTEREY COMM HAS FIRE ENRT, REQ H70 IF AVAILABLE
6:15 PM3[6] 1039 S4/ CPD
6:14 PM2[3] RED VEHICLE

The Spirit of Wild Places

My latest article for Voices of Monterey Bay http://VOMB.org is out. Here are the first two paragraphs.

I’ve been enchanted with the spirit of wild places most of my life. I went backpacking to the top of Mount San Jacinto when I was 9, long before the tram was built. My family and I took a weeklong mule trip to the high country camps of Yosemite when I was 10. We camped every summer when I was growing up. I grew up as a Girl Scout and wild places were very much part of my life. We were taught to pack it in, pack it out, just because … well, what else would one do? Long before there was a “leave no trace movement,” it was what we were taught and what we did.

This upbringing probably contributed to my love affair with Big Sur. It was a natural extension of my wildness education in many of the most beautiful places in California and the West. I learned to water ski on Big Bear Lake and hike in the Sierras. We traveled to Yellowstone, the Grand Tetons, and other wild places of the West. I wish others had the opportunities that I did. Sadly, most of these places are overcrowded and overrun now. The experience is not quite what it was. The wildness is becoming harder and harder to find.

One can find the rest of the article here: https://voicesofmontereybay.org/2019/08/22/the-spirit-of-wild-places/

Enjoy.