Slide work continues

Slide work continues on Highway 299 west of Del Loma.

While most of the recent fires’ areas were in wildland, the damage to area infrastructure is still being repaired.

Highway 299 remains under one-way control for a fire-caused landslide west of Del Loma.

Caltrans Information Officer Mario Montalvo said Monday that crews are working to open the area as soon as possible but said that may not be possible until early next year.

He said the closure area has been moved to allow crews to stabilize the hillside and remove hazardous trees in the area. The new closure area is from 2.5 miles east of Cedar Flat to the community of Big Flat, near the Straw House.

Montalvo said that while Caltrans hopes to make the area safe and reopen the highway in a timely manner, it is difficult to do so while also accommodating the traveling public.

A time-lapse video of the operation on our website,, shows how clearing work can only take place between piloted trips through the site.

Another significantly damaged area was Hyampom Road west of Hayfork. According to a U.S. Forest Service report, the road was reopened last week, but motorists were warned to be vigilant.

“Multiple agencies, including Trinity County Roads, Office of Emergency Services, USDA Forest Service and contract crews have been working hard in dangerous and steep conditions to remove fire-weakened trees, clear errant rockslides and chipping brush. Ongoing efforts to make the road safe for public transportation resulted in the road being opened to traffic once again.

"Please be mindful that debris may be on the road and heavy equipment will continue to be present as you make your way between Hyampom and Hayfork.” Throughout the time the fire was in the area, large trees and rocks continually fell down to the road from the steep hillsides above causing severe infrastructure damage and blocking the roadway.

Hawkins Bar Fire Chief Todd Wright said the phone system in his area and surrounding communities was taken out by the fires and may be out until December. Officials with Frontier Communications could not be reached as of press time.

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