Section of Sherman Pass Road closes temporarily for improvements

Section of Sherman Pass Road closes  temporarily for improvementsKERN RIVER RANGER DISTRICT — A section of Sherman Pass Road No. 22S05 will temporarily close to through traffic this fall. The planned closure is caused by contracted road, culvert and bridge work near Fish Creek Campground on the Kern Plateau.

The Sherman Pass Road stretches west from the Upper Kern River and east to Highway 395. The closure and bridge installation are planned for Sept. 10 through Dec. 15.

The project site is just east of the Fish Creek Campground.

Contractors will remove an undersized pipe (culvert) and replace it with a bridge. This work will require closure of both lanes.

The following is a list of frequently asked questions:

• Where will the Sherman Pass Road be closed and signed? On the west side, a sign is posted at the intersection of Mountain Road 99 and Sherman Pass (below Johnsondale Bridge), reading “WARNING — Road Closed 36 miles ahead at Fish Creek Campground – Sept. 10 through Dec. 15.” On the east side, a sign is posted near the South Fork Bridge-Forest Service boundary, reading “WARNING — Road Closed 9 miles ahead at Jackass Road No. 21S01, Sept. 10 through Dec. 15.”

The actual road closure is located just east of Fish Creek Campground to the intersection of the Sherman Pass Road and Jackass Road.

• Will there be other closures in the area? The entrance to Jackass Road No. 21S01 will be closed to all traffic during contractor work hours (6 a.m. to 6 p.m. Monday through Friday). The Jackass Road will be open to all traffic outside of contractor work hours.

• Are deer hunting zones being affected? All hunting zones will remain accessible. However, hunters may need to familiarize themselves with the road closure area before their trip. Depending on the area, some destinations may require additional driving time.

• Will there still be access to Inyo National Forest? The public will be able to access the Inyo National Forest. Monache and Powell Meadow will remain accessible through the west side of Sherman Pass Road and its junction with Mountain Road 99.

• How will Smith Mountain area be accessed? Access to the north area of Smith Mountain is through the west side of Sherman Pass Road (Kernville) using Smith Road No. 21S36 and Smith Meadow Road No. 20S39. Access will be from the top down to Smith Meadow Road, and exits will require using the same route.

Access to the south area of Smith Mountain is from the southeast using the Jackass Road No. 21S01 (with the contractor work hour’s closure described above) and the Smith Mountain Road No. 21S37. Access will be from the bottom up to Smith Mountain Road, and exits will require using the same routes.

• How will medical or fire emergency response be provided? All emergency traffic will respond as normal.

• Will Fish Creek Campground remain open to the public? Fish Creek Campground will remain open to the public. The closure is located just east of Fish Creek Campground. Access to Fish Creek Campground will be from the west side of Sherman Pass (Kernville).

To lessen the impacts, all forest visitors and users are encouraged to plan ahead and call the Kernville Ranger Station for assistance in getting to your destinations.

This temporary closure may add several hours to your trip, depending on your chosen route.

Plan accordingly and have a safe trip.

For more information, please call the Kernville Ranger Station, open weekdays from 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m., 760-376-3781.

Story First Published: 2018-09-07