July 15, 2019
Mountain travel problematic, tips for the intrepid
BIG BEAR – (INT) – San Bernardino County officials are discouraging mountain travel this President’s Day weekend.

Crestline, Lake Arrowhead and Running Springs are open for business and great for food, shopping and general relaxation, but the Valentine’s day rainstorm washed away most of the snow. Colder temperatures this weekend may replenish some of it.

Snow conditions are great in the higher-elevation Big Bear area, but many roads are closed. The only way into Big Bear and to the area's two major ski resorts is through the High Desert on Highway 18.

For those who plan on visiting the local mountains, visitors are urged to be safe, smart, and polite.

--Heavy fog is common on mountain highways. Motorists are reminded to be alert, slow for weather conditions and use headlights while driving. Avoid travel during storm events and check road and weather conditions before you travel. Motorists should anticipate delays and longer travel time.

--Carry tire chains, but do not stop in the roadways to put them on. Chains are not a convenient option for motorists when ice and snow are present. They are required. Motorists must carry chains or other legally compliant traction devices. The San Bernardino Mountain regions have Caltrans-permitted and -trained chain installers available during periods when chains are required.

--Motorists are urged to drive carefully and use turnouts to allow faster traffic to pass.

--Stock vehicles with water, snacks, blankets, a charged cell phone, flashlight and a full tank of gas before visiting the mountains. For safe winter driving tips and chain control information please go to http://www.dot.ca.gov/cttravel/winter.html. Check out Caltrans' "Quick Map" for current road conditions and chain requirements at http://quickmap.dot.ca.gov. For real-time traffic, download the Quick Map app on iTunes or Google Play.

--Be courteous. The mountains are a full-time home to thousands of people. Visitors should carry their trash with them or use one of the dumpsters located along state highways 18 and 330, which are generously provided through a partnership between county government, Caltrans and Burrtec.

--Park only in areas clearly designated for parking. Illegally parked vehicles, especially those blocking roads or snow plows, will be quickly towed away.

Law enforcement will be present in greater numbers and will actively enforce laws concerning driving, chains, parking, roadside play and littering.

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