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2017 Road Reports

All discussion related to transportation to, from and within the Sierra Nevada. Need directions or flight information? Info on road conditions? A ride to the trail head? Can you offer a ride, or do you run a transportation business or shuttle service for the Sierra Nevada? Come on in and post the details!

Re: 2017 Road Reports

Postby Wandering Daisy » Sat Jul 15, 2017 7:25 pm

Came over Tioga Pass today (Lee Vining side to Groveland side). It is absolutely stunningly beautiful, but almost NO snow! All facilities are still closed. Swarms of people parked along the road. I have never seen so many stacked up cars at the Big Oak Entrance! It was about 2PM and the line of stalled cars was way past the new lodge. As I drove on, lines of cars kept coming up the road. I did not go into the Valley- I imagine it was even worse. If you just want to go up to Tuolumne on a weekend, go in from Lee Vining. There was little traffic going in this way. I only had to wait behind three cars.

PS. Chevron gas price in Lee Vining is $4.20 a gallon! :eek:



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Re: 2017 Road Reports

Postby rlown » Sat Jul 15, 2017 8:24 pm

I like to take 50 over to 395 through gardnerville (207?), and then south to the east entrance on 120. 9/24 will be the date. permit secured for 5. No skeeters or minimal snow by that time.. Not much traffic either at that time. Truck carries enough fuel to get to the trailhead and back to a reasonable place for refuel.
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Re: 2017 Road Reports

Postby Wandering Daisy » Sun Jul 16, 2017 6:24 am

I do the same except I take Monitor Pass because I just like the view from the pass and the drive up the Carson River is very nice too. It is shorter than via Gardnerville, but slower, so the time saved is minimal. The Monitor Pass road has been re-paved recently and is a good road now, if you have not been over it for a while. By the way, Gardnerville is a good place to get gas at a reasonable price.

Also, much of the west side of Tioga Pass (about west of White Wolf road, which is still closed) is new pavement. Looks like it was put in this year. Nice road, textured center line so you know if you are out of your lane. Still very narrow with no shoulder. I would say a third of the drivers coming the other direction were either on the center line or over it, particularly the RV's. A lot of gawkers! I really had to pay attention or get plowed over.

Hwy 120 traffic is getting terrible. Yosemite either does not have the expertise, will or budget to do much about it. It would be great to have one of those big electronic signs put up around Buck Meadow, that says the estimated time to get to the Big Oak Entrance and then to Yosemite Valley, just like those highway signs that say so many minutes to downtown in most cities. I think half the people going up the road would turn around if they knew they were going to be stuck in a 2 hour line to get into the park. A lot are probably locals who just are going up for the day and they would be just as happy to go another day. In this day and age you would think a more efficient procedure could be used to get through the entrance. Too much tourist chit-chat. That should be saved for the visitor center, once through the gate. Should set up a system similar to Fast Track (for those with annual or senior passes) used on toll bridges.
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Re: 2017 Road Reports

Postby rlown » Sun Jul 16, 2017 6:35 am

I've done the Monitor pass a few times as well; way better than 120 from the West. We like the Tahoe route on the way out especially for the buffets in Tahoe :)

There is always Old Priest Grade. That's a special road both up and down. Right turn from the West off of 120; fast and furious both directions. Going down, have really good brakes.

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Re: 2017 Road Reports

Postby Wandering Daisy » Sun Jul 16, 2017 7:18 am

Interesting since RV's or wide vehicles (truck with camper) are not supposed to go up Old Priest Grade.
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Re: 2017 Road Reports

Postby rlown » Sun Jul 16, 2017 7:29 am

There was another video showing a guy getting stopped by CHP going downhill in his RV.. :) Evidently, the signage isn't really great for that little infraction. I've seen full sized trucks on that road and it was scary.
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Re: 2017 Road Reports

Postby fishmonger » Mon Jul 24, 2017 6:17 am

Reds Meadow via the Minaret road should now be open. I rode my bicycle last Wednesday and the repairs they had started 10 days earlier had been completed. Just the street sweeper was still getting crud off the pavement at the very bottom and should have finished that job on that day. The rest of the road was clean. If it isn't open yet, I assume they are waiting for campgrounds to spin up operations, but the road is fine. Only one corner on the single lane segment was patched and some concrete blocks were buried along the outside edge to support that spot. Many other corners had concrete blocks on the pavement edge to discourage getting close to cracks that had formed along the outside of the road, but I think those blocks were placed last season already.

Overall the road pretty much remains in place as you know it. Rumors of complete closure for an entire season to fix it up were dismissed by Reds Meadows owners, who when I was there were reeling from a Cisco food service truck ripping their water mains off the building, shutting down showers, restaurant, etc...
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Re: 2017 Road Reports

Postby Wandering Daisy » Thu Aug 31, 2017 10:38 am

Hwy 395 and Monitor Pass are still closed near Topaz, due to fire. Detours in this area involve VERY long drives to the east in Nevada.
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Re: 2017 Road Reports

Postby TahoeJeff » Thu Aug 31, 2017 12:33 pm

Wandering Daisy wrote:Hwy 395 and Monitor Pass are still closed near Topaz, due to fire. Detours in this area involve VERY long drives to the east in Nevada.


And that just killed my plan for Carson Iceberg this weekend.
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