The Angeles Crest Highway has finally reopened after months of repairs.
After the Woolsey Fire and other smaller wildfires ripped through thousands of acres through Ventura and Los Angeles counties last year, it was followed by unusually heavy rainfall that led to debris flows and rock slides throughout the area, including along Angeles Crest Highway.
A major rock slide on Feb. 15, 2019, forced the closure of a 19-mile stretch of Angeles Crest Highway, which also doubles as State Route 2 and acts as the only path that cuts through the San Gabriel Mountains.
After more than eight months of delays as crews worked to clear the rocks from the roadway, pave the highway shoulder and install metal fencing, the Angeles Crest Highway reopened to motorists and cyclists Tuesday, Caltrans said.
UPDATE: Angeles Crest Highway (SR-2) is CLOSED at Mt. Wilson / Red Box Rd to Upper Big Tujunga Cyn Rd to repair a slide that occurred in winter storm on Feb. 15. Next step: Crane will install steel mesh curtains (low right on ground) to stabilize hillside. May open in July/Aug. pic.twitter.com/GlX7YDVDo9
— Caltrans District 7 (@CaltransDist7) May 31, 2019
When the rocks came crashing down the roadway during a February storm, officials closed it down between Rincon Red Box Road and Upper Big Tujunga Canyon Road, and initially estimated it would reopen in April. But storms that followed in March caused more slope failure near the top of the slide as crews were working.
While the 19-mile stretch was reopened Tuesday, Caltrans warned motorists that intermittent closures are expected as crews complete installing the retaining wall.
Campsites in the area remained open throughout the closure and were expected to stay open through November, though camp fires are not allowed due to high winds and elevated wildfire danger, officials said.
THE GATES ARE OPEN! After months of hard work to clear a slide from a winter storm, pave the highway shoulder, & install a rock fence… Caltrans has officially OPENED ANGELES CREST HIGHWAY to motorists and cyclists! Expect intermittent closures as we complete the retaining wall. pic.twitter.com/bPhjVFhEpE
— Caltrans District 7 (@CaltransDist7) October 22, 2019