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Highway 395 Near Mono Lake Closed After Avalanches

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Highway 395 Near Mono Lake Closed After Avalanches
March 18, 2023 04:50PM
California's Route 395 remains closed after being buried by avalanches
Sam Mauhay-Moore
March 18, 2023

In late February, a series of avalanches buried a half a mile of U.S. Route 395 on the eastern side of California's Sierra Nevada under 30 to 40 feet of snow and debris. Three weeks and another atmospheric river later, a portion of the highway near Mono Lake is still closed, with no solid estimation as to when it'll reopen.

The full extent of the damage the avalanches caused to U.S. 395 won't be known until snow and debris have been cleared, which could take weeks, Caltrans District 9 wrote in an update posted to Facebook. The avalanches that struck the hillsides above the highway between Lee Vining and State Route 167 are expected to have carried rocks, trees, guardrails, fencing and pieces of road along with heavy amounts of snow and ice, guaranteeing that future debris removal will be a lengthy process.

Meanwhile, the closure has cut off the small communities of Lee Vining and Mono City from each other. What was once a short commute between the nearby towns is now a four-hour drive through Nevada, and many people in the area are now unable to attend school, go to work or visit family members, according to the Mono Lake Committee.


Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 03/18/2023 04:52PM by KenS.
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