Live wires on the road and neighborly mountain folk

If you ride in the hills around the Bay Area during high winds, be prepared to find closed roads due to fallen trees and live power lines.

Old Santa Cruz Hwy. This is highly inconvenient. There's not exactly an alternate route from here. #cycling

Because of unusually high winds following yesterday’s showers, a number of trees weakened by four years of drought are falling into roads all over the Santa Cruz Mountains yesterday and today. I tried to bypass one temporary closure on Old Santa Cruz Highway this morning, but a live power line blocked the way.

Happily, friendly residents saw my distress and directed me to the private, one-lane drive through their neighborhood that got me past the obstruction. “We don’t mind cyclists using our road,” said one of the residents, “but don’t tell the cars how to get through here.” Because detours for bicycles on these mountain roads are miles long and involve thousands of feet of additional elevation gain, I was very grateful for their neighborly hospitality.

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