If you plan to ride in the Santa Cruz Mountains this weekend …

The forecast predicts wonderful riding weather throughout the San Francisco Bay Area and the Central Coast for this Martin Luther King Jr Day weekend, but this past week of heavy rain and high winds have taken their toll on mountain and coastal roads.

Most state highways in Santa Cruz County, including Highway 9, Big Basin Highway, and Hecker Pass, should be re-opened by the weekend. State Highway 41 in SLO County and a big portion of Highway 1 through Big Sur will remain closed into February due to storm damage. Caltrans D5, which is responsible for Central Coast State Highways, posts road closure updates here.

Several county roads in Santa Cruz County favored by hill-seeking roadies also remain closed. These include Bear Creek Road, Eureka Canyon, Highland, Old Santa Cruz Highway, and Zayante Road. Rodeo Gulch and Soquel San Jose are reduced to a single lane in spots due to slipouts. For details on specific locations, refer to the Santa Cruz County road closure list.

Calfire closed Soquel Demo Forest to public access due to dangerous conditions and to allow crews to move heavy equipment through the forest.

Some roads remain closed as of Friday in Santa Clara County: Gist Road, which connects Black Road to Skyline; a portion of Black Road to Skyline; Old Santa Cruz Highway between Ogallala and Holy City (with no good detours); and part of Metcalf Road to the motorcycle park. A part of Redwood Gulch is a single lane. Call the County Roads Hotline at 408-494-1382 for current information.

Mount Hamilton Road was closed earlier this week due to heavy snow (!) but I believe it’s open now; the view at the top should be marvelous this weekend.

Even where roads remain open, watch for fallen trees and branches, debris, and slick spots. Mud and gravel deposited by flooding creeks remain inches deep on many of our roads, especially near the road edge.

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