In April of 2006, a huge part of the mountain above Highway 140 south of El Portal and north of Mariposa came falling down. It blocked the road and still does. The name given was the Ferguson Rockslide. Luckily it did not dam up the Merced.
For years a “bypass” with 2 bridges across the river has been the mode – but they are single lane and at an angle. This really slows down traffic. There is a control light for one-way traffic.
After nine years of study, a solution is on the way. CALTRANS will construct a rock shed through the rockfall debris and restore SR-140 on the existing alignment. The US Federal Highway Administration is a driver on this and the plan is to permanently restore the section of of the road with a sort of “half tunnel” under the rockfall. These artist conceptions show the idea best:
SEE RELATED STORY
Construction will start this summer. Completion will be by 2020.
Unrelated thought worth quoting: “Ain’t nothin’ that I’d rather do. Goin’ down…Party time. My friends are gonna be there too – I’m on the highway to hell.” – Ac Dc
MrHalfDome™ – Rick Deutsch – www.HikeHalfDome.com