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Big Sur: Landslide shuts Highway 1 near Bixby Bridge

March 17, 2011|By Jane Engle | Los Angeles Times Staff Writer
  • The Bixby Bridge, shown in 2009, is near the road closure on California Highway 1 in the Big Sur area.
The Bixby Bridge, shown in 2009, is near the road closure on California Highway… (Ricardo DeAratanha / Los…)

Here’s an alert for motorists headed to the Big Sur area in Central California: California Highway 1 is shut down for about two miles between the historic Bixby Bridge on the south (about 13 miles south of Carmel) and Palo Colorado Road on the north because of a landslide. Detours can take hours.

The damage: The landslide, which happened Wednesday just south of the Rocky Creek Bridge, dropped a section of the scenic coastal road into the sea, according to the website of Pfeiffer Big Sur State Park. It added: "The damage has yet to be fully assessed, but early estimates are the road will remain closed for at least 1 month."

Here's a Google Map of the closure area:


View Larger Map

Landslides are common along this road during the winter months; a major slide  occurred in March last year.

Alternate routes:  Park officials said the only direct route to state parks in the Big Sur area was from the south, on Highway 1 from Cambria.

Anyone wanting to visit Pfeiffer Big Sur State Park, Andrew Molera State Park, Julia Pfeiffer Burns State Park or Point Sur State Historic Park would be blocked from the north, they said. So motorists were advised to take U.S. Highway 101 south, then California Highway46 west and then Highway 1 north. The park website added: "This detour is significant and will increase the drive time by 3 or more hours."

More info: For updates on road conditions, go to the California Department of Transportation's road information page and enter "1" in the search box or call its information line: (800) 427-7623.

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