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Author Topic: CA 49 from CA 16 over Yuba Pass to CA 89  (Read 1805 times)

Max Rockatansky

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CA 49 from CA 16 over Yuba Pass to CA 89
« on: June 25, 2017, 08:16:21 AM »

Its been a busy weekend for me.  The weather has been absolutely awful in the Central Valley so I took some time off to get into the northern Sierras to finish the two passes I haven't been over before (Yuba and old Mineral Summit).  I'll obviously be coming back to this to do my whole alignment history and standard maps as per usual on CA 49, but for now I'll link over the photos:

https://www.flickr.com/gp/151828809@N08/7f7F1n

Obviously given the length of CA 49 and alignment shifts I'll be revisiting this one pretty frequently as the week progresses.  But for what it is worth I did take the original alignments of CA 49 in; Auburn, Grass Valley, and, Nevada City which are in the photos.   Observations along the road include the following:

Obviously given the length of CA 49 and alignment shifts I'll be revisiting this one pretty frequently as the week progresses.  But for what it is worth I did take the original alignments of CA 49 in; Auburn, Grass Valley, and, Nevada City which are in the photos.   Observations along the road include the following:

-  I'm really surprised that Caltrans never found a way to bypass Placerville with 49.  The route is surprisingly steep and narrow for a route that runs to a downtown area.  With all the work it must have taken to get an expressway on US 50 it seemed like it would be an obvious choice to upgrade.  I'm fairly certain that the alignment of 49 in Placeville is original as most of the infrastructure would have existed back in 1934.  US 50 would have run on Main Street originally which had a brief multiplex with SSR 49.   The four lane expressway US 50 now takes through Placerville appears to have been complete by 1957 or 1958 according to State Highway Maps but the detail is not really what I say is enough to confirm it for sure:

1957

http://www.davidrumsey.com/luna/servlet/detail/RUMSEY~8~1~239546~5511864:Road-Map-of-the-State-of-California?sort=Pub_List_No_InitialSort%2CPub_Date%2CPub_List_No%2CSeries_No&qvq=q:caltrans;sort:Pub_List_No_InitialSort%2CPub_Date%2CPub_List_No%2CSeries_No;lc:RUMSEY~8~1&mi=41&trs=86

1958

http://www.davidrumsey.com/luna/servlet/detail/RUMSEY~8~1~239543~5511862:Road-Map-of-the-State-of-California?sort=Pub_List_No_InitialSort%2CPub_Date%2CPub_List_No%2CSeries_No&qvq=q:caltrans;sort:Pub_List_No_InitialSort%2CPub_Date%2CPub_List_No%2CSeries_No;lc:RUMSEY~8~1&mi=39&trs=86

-  The Foresthill Bridge is accessible for free so long as you tell the people at the ranger station all you want is a picture or two.  I'll be looking into how 49 would have had to been shifted if the Auburn Dam had been built.  The Foresthill Bridge was constructed from 1971 to 1973 and was intended to be a realignment of CA 49 for the Auburn Dam Project.   The Auburn Dam Project was stopped in 1975 after an earthquake due to the design of the dam being deem insufficient to withstand a similar magnitude with the concrete gravity arch design.  The Auburn Dam was supposed to the tallest dam in the United States and would have flooded the confluence of the North Fork and Middle Fork American River where 49 traverses.

-  I took Lincoln Way through downtown Auburn.  There is actually signage for the Lincoln Highway instead of Historic US 40, that signage resumes on modern 49.  Oddly 49 is signed terribly in Auburn and easy to lose track of.   I'm assuming SSR 49 originally ran on Lincoln Way through downtown Auburn rather than High Street but the 1935 County Road Map doesn't provide as much detail:

http://www.davidrumsey.com/luna/servlet/detail/RUMSEY~8~1~247328~5515375:Placer-County-?sort=Pub_List_No_InitialSort%2CPub_Date%2CPub_List_No%2CSeries_No&qvq=q:california%2Bdivision%2Bof%2Bhighways;sort:Pub_List_No_InitialSort%2CPub_Date%2CPub_List_No%2CSeries_No;lc:RUMSEY~8~1&mi=55&trs=163

-  The 49 expressway between Auburn and Grass Valley is designated as a Safety Corridor.  I was coming through on a Friday morning at the end of rush hour and I'm not seeing what makes this corridor so unsafe...maybe I'm missing something?   Oddly the alignment between Auburn and Grass Valley doesn't appear to be a substantial diviation of the original alignment dating back to 1934.

-  I took the original alignments of 49 through Grass Valley and Nevada City.  Surprisingly this would have been a pretty difficult little path to get through both cities but I'm still surprised Caltrans put a freeway all the way up in the area given how remote it is.  Basically the original alignment of 49 would have probably (I say that because I'm going to verify it with county maps this week) used; Auburn Street, Main Street, Nevada City Highway, Sacramento Street, and Broad Street.

With Grass Valley Specifically 20 would have come in to meet 49 via the Rough and Ready Highway at the intersection of Main Street and Auburn Street.  20 would have multiplexed SSR 49 all the way to Nevada City where it continued over Sacramento Street onto Nevada Street.  LRN 25 would have met SSR 20 and SSR 49 in Grass Valley at Bennett Street which would have become CA 174 during the 1964 renumbering.   The modern freeway alignment of CA 20/49 can be seen in development from 1966 to 1969 State Highway Maps.   CA 20 seems to have been realigned off the Rough and Ready Highway to the south to meet CA 49 at Empire Street sometime between 1982 and 1986.

1935 Nevada County Map

http://www.davidrumsey.com/luna/servlet/detail/RUMSEY~8~1~247324~5515373:Nevada-County-?sort=Pub_List_No_InitialSort%2CPub_Date%2CPub_List_No%2CSeries_No&qvq=q:california%2Bdivision%2Bof%2Bhighways;sort:Pub_List_No_InitialSort%2CPub_Date%2CPub_List_No%2CSeries_No;lc:RUMSEY~8~1&mi=53&trs=163

1966 State Highway Map

http://www.davidrumsey.com/luna/servlet/detail/RUMSEY~8~1~239519~5511846:State-Highway-Map,-California,-1966?sort=Pub_List_No_InitialSort%2CPub_Date%2CPub_List_No%2CSeries_No&qvq=q:caltrans;sort:Pub_List_No_InitialSort%2CPub_Date%2CPub_List_No%2CSeries_No;lc:RUMSEY~8~1&mi=23&trs=86

1967 State Highway Map

http://www.davidrumsey.com/luna/servlet/detail/RUMSEY~8~1~239516~5511844:State-Highway-Map,-California,-1967?sort=Pub_List_No_InitialSort%2CPub_Date%2CPub_List_No%2CSeries_No&qvq=q:caltrans;sort:Pub_List_No_InitialSort%2CPub_Date%2CPub_List_No%2CSeries_No;lc:RUMSEY~8~1&mi=21&trs=86

1969 State Highway Map

http://www.davidrumsey.com/luna/servlet/detail/RUMSEY~8~1~239513~5511842:State-Highway-Map,-California,-1969?sort=Pub_List_No_InitialSort%2CPub_Date%2CPub_List_No%2CSeries_No&qvq=q:caltrans;sort:Pub_List_No_InitialSort%2CPub_Date%2CPub_List_No%2CSeries_No;lc:RUMSEY~8~1&mi=19&trs=86

1982 State Highway Map

http://www.davidrumsey.com/luna/servlet/detail/RUMSEY~8~1~239494~5511830:California-State-Highways,-December?sort=Pub_List_No_InitialSort%2CPub_Date%2CPub_List_No%2CSeries_No&qvq=q:caltrans;sort:Pub_List_No_InitialSort%2CPub_Date%2CPub_List_No%2CSeries_No;lc:RUMSEY~8~1&mi=7&trs=86

1986 State Highway Map

http://www.davidrumsey.com/luna/servlet/detail/RUMSEY~8~1~239491~5511828:State-Highway-Map,-1986-?sort=Pub_List_No_InitialSort%2CPub_Date%2CPub_List_No%2CSeries_No&qvq=q:caltrans;sort:Pub_List_No_InitialSort%2CPub_Date%2CPub_List_No%2CSeries_No;lc:RUMSEY~8~1&mi=5&trs=86

Edit:  I'm not certain but 49 may have taken Old Downieville Highway in the very early signed highway era out of Nevada City, the Nevada County Map isn't really detailed to discern closely enough.   I'm doubtful that it did post 1934 given the map has a similar curvature to Broad Street and the modern highway alignment north of Nevada City.

-  49 was in bad shape north of Nevada City almost all the way to Downieville.  There was several slide zones that were being actively worked in one-way flagman areas which cost me a good hour in travel time.  Oddly there was a press conference going on about river safety on the 1921 Hoyt Crossing Bridge of the South Yuba River which I thought was odd....why go out all that way just to have an Art Deco Bridge as a backdrop? 

-  People were struggling with the 1938 Jersey Bridge in downtown Downieville given it was one lane.  You literally can't even turn onto the bridge if someone is even on the road leading over it.  Oddly there is a stop sign at the end of the bridge when the traffic should keep flowing, people kept trying to wave me onto a road there was literally no room for.   Even still, interesting to see another brief one-lane section of state highway.

-  Yuba Pass was in terrible shape, there is a slide zone that is blocked off and has unmanned one-way control.  The area is so remote it didn't seem to warrant a timed light.

Edit:  I added the route descriptions and alignment history here since it was just easier to build on what I already wrote with the road observations.
« Last Edit: June 30, 2017, 01:34:12 PM by Max Rockatansky »
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Max Rockatansky

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Re: CA 49 from CA 16 over Yuba Pass to CA 89
« Reply #1 on: June 28, 2017, 12:14:58 PM »

   Before I get to the main even with the alignment of CA 49 north of US 50 I figured there was some stuff that was topical since it relates to the highway which I haven't touched on previously.  First off I'll state with the New Melones Lake reservoir:

https://flic.kr/s/aHsm3hkZYk

The original Melones Dam was completed in 1926 along the Stanislaus River which created a much smaller reservoir than today.  That being the case SSR 49 actually crossed the Stanislaus River through what is now a ghost town called "Melones" or originally "Robinson Ferry."   Apparently Melones essentially was depopulated or was small enough by the 1940s to not have postal service, so really it didn't seem like too many probably had to be rellocated for the New Melones Dam project.  Modern CA 49 takes the Archie Stevenfoot Bridge which my understanding was completed in 1976 while the new Melones Project was finished in 1980.   The Stevenfoot Bridge just happens to cross the Calaveras and Tuolumne County Lines.  The older alignment of CA 49 can easily be seen on Google Maps here:

https://www.google.com/maps/place/Melones,+CA+95222/@38.0151888,-120.5071897,1433m/data=!3m1!1e3!4m5!3m4!1s0x8090c0444fb9ab43:0x280fb752b2025b1b!8m2!3d38.0099329!4d-120.497063?hl=en

Here is the 1935 Road Maps of Calaveras County and Tuolumne County showing the original highway alignment of 49:

Calaveras County

http://www.davidrumsey.com/luna/servlet/detail/RUMSEY~8~1~247271~5515346:Calaveras-County-?sort=Pub_List_No_InitialSort%2CPub_Date%2CPub_List_No%2CSeries_No&qvq=q:california%2Bdivision%2Bof%2Bhighways;sort:Pub_List_No_InitialSort%2CPub_Date%2CPub_List_No%2CSeries_No;lc:RUMSEY~8~1&mi=27&trs=163

Tuolumne County

http://www.davidrumsey.com/luna/servlet/detail/RUMSEY~8~1~247379~5515400:Tuolumne-County-?sort=Pub_List_No_InitialSort%2CPub_Date%2CPub_List_No%2CSeries_No&qvq=q:california%2Bdivision%2Bof%2Bhighways;sort:Pub_List_No_InitialSort%2CPub_Date%2CPub_List_No%2CSeries_No;lc:RUMSEY~8~1&mi=79&trs=163

Surprisingly the changes to the size/surface of New Melones Lake can be seen slightly on the state highway maps in 1970 and 1977 but for some reason Melones is still referenced as a place:

1970 State Highway Map

http://www.davidrumsey.com/luna/servlet/detail/RUMSEY~8~1~239509~5511840:State-Highway-Map,-California,-1970?sort=Pub_List_No_InitialSort%2CPub_Date%2CPub_List_No%2CSeries_No&qvq=q:caltrans;sort:Pub_List_No_InitialSort%2CPub_Date%2CPub_List_No%2CSeries_No;lc:RUMSEY~8~1&mi=17&trs=86

1977 State Highway Map

http://www.davidrumsey.com/luna/servlet/detail/RUMSEY~8~1~239503~5511836:State-Highway-Map,-1977-?sort=Pub_List_No_InitialSort%2CPub_Date%2CPub_List_No%2CSeries_No&qvq=q:caltrans;sort:Pub_List_No_InitialSort%2CPub_Date%2CPub_List_No%2CSeries_No;lc:RUMSEY~8~1&mi=13&trs=86

I have two more road albums from the Merced River Canyon and Kemble Road still to go which relates to 49 before I start getting into the bigger album.  I actually did go over 49 from Oakhurst north to I-80 last year on the Max's Road Pacific Southwest Thread.

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Re: CA 49 from CA 16 over Yuba Pass to CA 89
« Reply #2 on: June 28, 2017, 12:49:42 PM »

Originally when SSR 49 was originally signed in 1934 the southern terminus was in Mariposa at SSR 140.   In 1960 there appears to have been an adopted alignment extension of LRN 65 (which SSR 49 ran on) from Mariposa to Oakhurst which can be seen looking at the 1959 and 1960 State Highway Maps:

1959 State Highway Map

http://www.davidrumsey.com/luna/servlet/detail/RUMSEY~8~1~239540~5511860:Road-Map-of-the-State-of-California?sort=Pub_List_No_InitialSort%2CPub_Date%2CPub_List_No%2CSeries_No&qvq=q:caltrans;sort:Pub_List_No_InitialSort%2CPub_Date%2CPub_List_No%2CSeries_No;lc:RUMSEY~8~1&mi=37&trs=86

1960 State Highway Map

http://www.davidrumsey.com/luna/servlet/detail/RUMSEY~8~1~239537~5511858:State-Highway-Map,-California,-1960?sort=Pub_List_No_InitialSort%2CPub_Date%2CPub_List_No%2CSeries_No&qvq=q:caltrans;sort:Pub_List_No_InitialSort%2CPub_Date%2CPub_List_No%2CSeries_No;lc:RUMSEY~8~1&mi=35&trs=86

LRN 65 was renumbered to LRN 49 during the 1964 state highway renumbering and can be seen here:

http://www.davidrumsey.com/luna/servlet/detail/RUMSEY~8~1~239525~5511850:State-Highway-Map,-California,-1964?sort=Pub_List_No_InitialSort%2CPub_Date%2CPub_List_No%2CSeries_No&qvq=q:caltrans;sort:Pub_List_No_InitialSort%2CPub_Date%2CPub_List_No%2CSeries_No;lc:RUMSEY~8~1&mi=27&trs=86

With CA 49 opening as a state highway between Mariposa and Oakhurt by 1967 which can be seen on the 1966 and 1967 state highway maps:

1966 State Highway Map

http://www.davidrumsey.com/luna/servlet/detail/RUMSEY~8~1~239525~5511850:State-Highway-Map,-California,-1964?sort=Pub_List_No_InitialSort%2CPub_Date%2CPub_List_No%2CSeries_No&qvq=q:caltrans;sort:Pub_List_No_InitialSort%2CPub_Date%2CPub_List_No%2CSeries_No;lc:RUMSEY~8~1&mi=27&trs=86

1967 State Highway Map

http://www.davidrumsey.com/luna/servlet/detail/RUMSEY~8~1~239516~5511844:State-Highway-Map,-California,-1967?sort=Pub_List_No_InitialSort%2CPub_Date%2CPub_List_No%2CSeries_No&qvq=q:caltrans;sort:Pub_List_No_InitialSort%2CPub_Date%2CPub_List_No%2CSeries_No;lc:RUMSEY~8~1&mi=21&trs=86

But that isn't to say that there wasn't roads between Mariposa and Oakhurst even back in 1935 as both county maps show roadsways that were maintained at the County Level:

Mariposa County

http://www.davidrumsey.com/luna/servlet/detail/RUMSEY~8~1~247310~5515366:Mariposa-County?sort=Pub_List_No_InitialSort%2CPub_Date%2CPub_List_No%2CSeries_No&qvq=q:california%2Bdivision%2Bof%2Bhighways;sort:Pub_List_No_InitialSort%2CPub_Date%2CPub_List_No%2CSeries_No;lc:RUMSEY~8~1&mi=46&trs=163

Madera County

http://www.davidrumsey.com/luna/servlet/detail/RUMSEY~8~1~247306~5515364:Madera-County-?sort=Pub_List_No_InitialSort%2CPub_Date%2CPub_List_No%2CSeries_No&qvq=q:california%2Bdivision%2Bof%2Bhighways;sort:Pub_List_No_InitialSort%2CPub_Date%2CPub_List_No%2CSeries_No;lc:RUMSEY~8~1&mi=44&trs=163

That being the case a lot of the roads along modern 49 were essentially the precursor to the highway extension.  With that said there is one in particular; Kemble Road that is unique because of the really awesome bridge views below CA 49 on the East Fork Chowchilla River:

https://flic.kr/s/aHsm3cBXW3

Really I know that was a ton of build up for really what isn't a historic road but you can't beat cool views like this:

IMG_1182 by Max Rockatansky, on Flickr

Max Rockatansky

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Re: CA 49 from CA 16 over Yuba Pass to CA 89
« Reply #3 on: June 28, 2017, 12:53:38 PM »

Speaking of cool views, in regards to something I already covered last year Lake McClure was full and the Bagby ghost town/Yosemite Valley Railroad was back underwater.  Really there was a pretty awesome view of CA 49 to be had looking north into the Merced River Canyon:

IMG_1168 by Max Rockatansky, on Flickr

With a wider view panoramic:

IMG_1174 by Max Rockatansky, on Flickr

I'm getting the feeling that 49 is going to be a really long thread given how weird the history of the north terminus is along with all the major alignment changes.  I'll probably revisit this one last out of all the stuff I did last week, but I figured that I would get the extra stuff up and running.

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Re: CA 49 from CA 16 over Yuba Pass to CA 89
« Reply #4 on: June 28, 2017, 07:18:51 PM »

Since this one is going to be extensive given the lenght of 49 I'm going to section this off into various control points to make this a lot more approachable for me to hit on everything.  With that being the case the first section of up of 49 is going to be Sierra City north to CA 70.  Interestingly it would seem that much like SSR 180 it would seem that SSR  49 was actually signed on roadways in Sierra County that were not under state maintenance as can be seen on the 1938 State Highway Map:

http://www.davidrumsey.com/luna/servlet/detail/RUMSEY~8~1~239588~5511892:Road-Map-of-the-State-of-California?sort=Pub_List_No_InitialSort%2CPub_Date%2CPub_List_No%2CSeries_No&qvq=q:caltrans;sort:Pub_List_No_InitialSort%2CPub_Date%2CPub_List_No%2CSeries_No;lc:RUMSEY~8~1&mi=69&trs=86

Interestingly the alignment doesn't appear to be very different than modern CA 49.  The 1935 Sierra and Pulmas County Maps shows that the alignment between Sierraville and modern CA 70 was county maintained at the time:

Sierra County:

http://www.davidrumsey.com/luna/servlet/detail/RUMSEY~8~1~247361~5515391:Sierra-County-?sort=Pub_List_No_InitialSort%2CPub_Date%2CPub_List_No%2CSeries_No&qvq=q:california%2Bdivision%2Bof%2Bhighways;sort:Pub_List_No_InitialSort%2CPub_Date%2CPub_List_No%2CSeries_No;lc:RUMSEY~8~1&mi=70&trs=163

Pulmas County:

http://www.davidrumsey.com/luna/servlet/detail/RUMSEY~8~1~247330~5515376:Plumas-County-?sort=Pub_List_No_InitialSort%2CPub_Date%2CPub_List_No%2CSeries_No&qvq=q:california%2Bdivision%2Bof%2Bhighways;sort:Pub_List_No_InitialSort%2CPub_Date%2CPub_List_No%2CSeries_No;lc:RUMSEY~8~1&mi=56&trs=163

By 1940 SSR 49 is not shown as existing between Sierraville and modern CA 70.  The map is not detailed enough to tell if SSR 49 still ended in Sierraville or was cut back to Yuba Pass at SSR 89:

http://www.davidrumsey.com/luna/servlet/detail/RUMSEY~8~1~239585~5511890:Road-Map-of-the-State-of-California?sort=Pub_List_No_InitialSort%2CPub_Date%2CPub_List_No%2CSeries_No&qvq=q:caltrans;sort:Pub_List_No_InitialSort%2CPub_Date%2CPub_List_No%2CSeries_No;lc:RUMSEY~8~1&mi=67&trs=86

By 1954 an implied new alignment of LRN 233 appears on the State Highway Map running from Sierraville to modern CA 70.  The implied aligmment is much straighter than the existing roads or how CA 49 turned out to be:

http://www.davidrumsey.com/luna/servlet/detail/RUMSEY~8~1~239555~5511870:Road-Map-of-the-State-of-California?sort=Pub_List_No_InitialSort%2CPub_Date%2CPub_List_No%2CSeries_No&qvq=q:caltrans;sort:Pub_List_No_InitialSort%2CPub_Date%2CPub_List_No%2CSeries_No;lc:RUMSEY~8~1&mi=47&trs=86

By 1958 the new alignment appears to have been abandoned and the State Highway Map shows that SSR 49 is officially state maintained on the previous county roads it occupied:

http://www.davidrumsey.com/luna/servlet/detail/RUMSEY~8~1~239543~5511862:Road-Map-of-the-State-of-California?sort=Pub_List_No_InitialSort%2CPub_Date%2CPub_List_No%2CSeries_No&qvq=q:caltrans;sort:Pub_List_No_InitialSort%2CPub_Date%2CPub_List_No%2CSeries_No;lc:RUMSEY~8~1&mi=39&trs=86

So what gives with the segment between Sierraville and modern CA 70?  How weird is it that the route was part of the initial signage but not in state control only then to adopt a new alignment only to abandon it for the previous route but just under state control?  I even consulted cahighways which seems to be pretty much on the same page as thinking all that is incredibly odd.  With that being the case the other question is where did SSR 49 terminate from 1940 to 1958?  The first canidate is Sierraville here where CA 89 swings south towards Lake Tahoe:

IMG_0849 by Max Rockatansky, on Flickr

Or at CA 89 where modern CA 49 meets coming down from Yuba Pass?

IMG_0843 by Max Rockatansky, on Flickr

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Re: CA 49 from CA 16 over Yuba Pass to CA 89
« Reply #5 on: June 28, 2017, 08:04:48 PM »

The second part of this whole little 49-a-thon will be from CA 89 to former LRN 36/CA 194.....

Yuba Pass is probably one of the easier passes of the Sierras in the current state highway system.  The pass was only showing 5% grades when I was rolling through and it felt somewhat less than that in places.  Yuba Pass is only 6,709 feet which is on the lower side of the mountain passes, there are some decent views from the northbound lanes heading down hill to CA 89:

IMG_0430 by Max Rockatansky, on Flickr

IMG_0431 by Max Rockatansky, on Flickr

IMG_0442 by Max Rockatansky, on Flickr

The alignment of CA 49 from Yuba Pass west to Downieville is essentially is exactly the same as it appears on the Sierra County Road map from 1935 listed above.   This is a really remote area which follows the North Fork Yuba River.  There isn't much in the way of services, I only found one unmanned gas station on 49 in Sierra City...this photo is facing the northbound lane:

IMG_0416 by Max Rockatansky, on Flickr

CA 49 is actually one of the few state highways with a single-lane segment.  In the case of 49 that segment is located completely on the Jersey Bridge in downtown Downieville which crosses the Downie River:

IMG_0407 by Max Rockatansky, on Flickr

I suspect that the road on the left part of the picture above is part of the original SSR 49 considering it is called "Old Highway."  The Jersey Bridge was opened in 1938 and actually a pretty nice looking little span with some really cool river views:

IMG_0393 by Max Rockatansky, on Flickr

IMG_0406 by Max Rockatansky, on Flickr

Crossing the Jersey Bridge CA 49 comes to Main Street which was once the terminus of LRN 36/CA 194:

IMG_0396 by Max Rockatansky, on Flickr

A look down Main Street on former LRN 36/CA 194:

IMG_0386 by Max Rockatansky, on Flickr

IMG_0398 by Max Rockatansky, on Flickr

Which kept going on the left out of downtown Downieville on Main Street:

IMG_0387 by Max Rockatansky, on Flickr

LRN 36 was part of the original state highway system and terminated at Saddleback Mountain.   Apparently LRN 36 was meant to service the mining district north of Downieville which is odd considering the town had long since declined well before the 1930s.  LRN 36 was briefly renumbered to CA 194 in 1964 before being deleted from the state highway system which is first reflected on the 1966 state highway map I have no idea if it was actually signed:

1964 State Highway Map:

http://www.davidrumsey.com/luna/servlet/detail/RUMSEY~8~1~239525~5511850:State-Highway-Map,-California,-1964?sort=Pub_List_No_InitialSort%2CPub_Date%2CPub_List_No%2CSeries_No&qvq=q:caltrans;sort:Pub_List_No_InitialSort%2CPub_Date%2CPub_List_No%2CSeries_No;lc:RUMSEY~8~1&mi=27&trs=86

1966 State Highway Map:
http://www.davidrumsey.com/luna/servlet/detail/RUMSEY~8~1~239519~5511846:State-Highway-Map,-California,-1966?sort=Pub_List_No_InitialSort%2CPub_Date%2CPub_List_No%2CSeries_No&qvq=q:caltrans;sort:Pub_List_No_InitialSort%2CPub_Date%2CPub_List_No%2CSeries_No;lc:RUMSEY~8~1&mi=23&trs=86


And with that I think that's enough for today.  I've gotten this down to two last road albums and I'll pick back up where I ended up on Friday when I have more time.

sparker

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Re: CA 49 from CA 16 over Yuba Pass to CA 89
« Reply #6 on: June 28, 2017, 08:51:11 PM »

CA 194 was deleted in 1965 along with several other short routes and urban connectors, including the original CA 215 along Garey Ave. in Pomona.  Ironically, when I-15E was commissioned in 1973, Caltrans re-used the CA 194 designation as a "placeholder" for the suffixed route -- and 9 years later both designations (signed suffix and legally defined state highway) were dropped in favor of I-215.  The term LRN, as well as its signed counterpart, the SSR, ceased to exist in 1964; everything after that was simply consolidated into the present state highway system -- even unsigned routes are considered CA xx.     
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Max Rockatansky

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Re: CA 49 from CA 16 over Yuba Pass to CA 89
« Reply #7 on: June 28, 2017, 09:07:12 PM »

CA 194 was deleted in 1965 along with several other short routes and urban connectors, including the original CA 215 along Garey Ave. in Pomona.  Ironically, when I-15E was commissioned in 1973, Caltrans re-used the CA 194 designation as a "placeholder" for the suffixed route -- and 9 years later both designations (signed suffix and legally defined state highway) were dropped in favor of I-215.  The term LRN, as well as its signed counterpart, the SSR, ceased to exist in 1964; everything after that was simply consolidated into the present state highway system -- even unsigned routes are considered CA xx.   

Even still, its kind of intriguing to think that such a minor state highway with a purpose oriented towards such a bygone era was allowed to exist up to the renumbering.  Really its just one of those little oddities that you'd never notice on a state highway map unless you went out onto the road looking.  Same thing with the whole deal with SSR 49 being signed on non-state maintained roadways.  I want to say that 12 was also part of that if I remember NE2 posting a picture correctly?

Edit:  Come to think of it, I'm not even sure if former LRN 36 was ever even paved?..even after the state highway status was yanked?  I know it was in Downieville, but what would be the point beyond that to Saddleback Mountain?  The 1964 map says that the route was a dirt route.
« Last Edit: June 28, 2017, 09:12:10 PM by Max Rockatansky »
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sparker

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Re: CA 49 from CA 16 over Yuba Pass to CA 89
« Reply #8 on: June 29, 2017, 08:59:18 PM »

CA 194 was deleted in 1965 along with several other short routes and urban connectors, including the original CA 215 along Garey Ave. in Pomona.  Ironically, when I-15E was commissioned in 1973, Caltrans re-used the CA 194 designation as a "placeholder" for the suffixed route -- and 9 years later both designations (signed suffix and legally defined state highway) were dropped in favor of I-215.  The term LRN, as well as its signed counterpart, the SSR, ceased to exist in 1964; everything after that was simply consolidated into the present state highway system -- even unsigned routes are considered CA xx.   

Even still, its kind of intriguing to think that such a minor state highway with a purpose oriented towards such a bygone era was allowed to exist up to the renumbering.  Really its just one of those little oddities that you'd never notice on a state highway map unless you went out onto the road looking.  Same thing with the whole deal with SSR 49 being signed on non-state maintained roadways.  I want to say that 12 was also part of that if I remember NE2 posting a picture correctly?

Edit:  Come to think of it, I'm not even sure if former LRN 36 was ever even paved?..even after the state highway status was yanked?  I know it was in Downieville, but what would be the point beyond that to Saddleback Mountain?  The 1964 map says that the route was a dirt route.

Sometimes the reason for maintaining one of the old and otherwise useless LRN's was less than either noble or commercially viable; an example of this was old LRN 94, which ran from SSR 89 near Richardson Bay near the south side of Emerald Bay up the hill to Fallen Leaf (about 4 miles), which was a small area comprised of a series of lodges; while the ownership of these was private, the lodges were often used for off-the-books conferences and/or political meetings by state officials (including legislators) and lobbyists or other entities desiring face-to-face meetings with those officials away from public scrutiny.  The LRN was kept maintained and plowed during winter to expedite these "conferences" -- which according to "underground" Division of Highways lore, often morphed into multi-day poker games and/or drinking fests!  By the early '60's, the usage of the facilities had declined to the point that state maintenance was no longer a "perk", so the 1965 deletion of numerous marginal routes (after '64 LRN 94 became the original CA 188) was applied to this one as well, with the 188 number re-used in San Diego County as the Tecate border access route some years later.  I suppose in retrospect LRN 94 could be termed a "corruption corridor"!   
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NE2

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Re: CA 49 from CA 16 over Yuba Pass to CA 89
« Reply #9 on: June 30, 2017, 12:11:31 AM »

The original intended purpose of LR 36 was to connect Downieville to Mount Pleasant on the old road between Quincy and Marysville (Port Wine Ridge Road), giving Downieville another outlet to the rest of the world. But Port Wine Ridge Road was never taken over by the state, and neither was much of LR 36.
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Re: CA 49 from CA 16 over Yuba Pass to CA 89
« Reply #10 on: June 30, 2017, 02:13:58 AM »

The original intended purpose of LR 36 was to connect Downieville to Mount Pleasant on the old road between Quincy and Marysville (Port Wine Ridge Road), giving Downieville another outlet to the rest of the world. But Port Wine Ridge Road was never taken over by the state, and neither was much of LR 36.

The documents NE2 cites date from 1907; the concept of LRN 36 intersecting a route to Quincy was laid to rest 2 years later when a subsequent state bond issue authorized LRN 30, which took a more northerly route beginning in Oroville rather than Marysville.  Part of that route is the easternmost portion of present CA 162, which terminates east of Lake Oroville.  LRN 30 itself was short-lived; the Division of Highways opted to extend LRN 21, then simply a Richvale-Oroville connector, up the Feather River canyon via what was mostly the then-WP service road, as LRN 30 featured severe grades and treacherous canyon-side perches, whereas the Feather River alignment more or less mimicked the rail line's relatively benign 1% gradient.  LRN 30 was deleted by the 1930's and its alignment east of Quincy subsumed by an extended LRN 21; the entire route east of Oroville was signed as SSR 24 and redesignated as Alternate US 40 in 1954-55 after a couple of severe winters caused long closures of US 40 over Donner Pass. 
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Max Rockatansky

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Re: CA 49 from CA 16 over Yuba Pass to CA 89
« Reply #11 on: June 30, 2017, 02:23:35 AM »

The original intended purpose of LR 36 was to connect Downieville to Mount Pleasant on the old road between Quincy and Marysville (Port Wine Ridge Road), giving Downieville another outlet to the rest of the world. But Port Wine Ridge Road was never taken over by the state, and neither was much of LR 36.

The documents NE2 cites date from 1907; the concept of LRN 36 intersecting a route to Quincy was laid to rest 2 years later when a subsequent state bond issue authorized LRN 30, which took a more northerly route beginning in Oroville rather than Marysville.  Part of that route is the easternmost portion of present CA 162, which terminates east of Lake Oroville.  LRN 30 itself was short-lived; the Division of Highways opted to extend LRN 21, then simply a Richvale-Oroville connector, up the Feather River canyon via what was mostly the then-WP service road, as LRN 30 featured severe grades and treacherous canyon-side perches, whereas the Feather River alignment more or less mimicked the rail line's relatively benign 1% gradient.  LRN 30 was deleted by the 1930's and its alignment east of Quincy subsumed by an extended LRN 21; the entire route east of Oroville was signed as SSR 24 and redesignated as Alternate US 40 in 1954-55 after a couple of severe winters caused long closures of US 40 over Donner Pass.

Another factor in why LRN 36 really never was fully completely was the plunge in population in Sierra County in the 20th Century.  Sierra County would have had about 4,000 residents between 1900 to 1910 and only somewhere in the neighborhood of 2,500 by the time the Signed State Highway era began in the 1930s.  Given the population barely moved from that point through the rest of the 20th century really would have put LRN 36 low on the totem pull considering the diminishing stature of Sierra County after the mining heyday was long over.  Really though, Yuba Pass and 89 turned out to be a very viable route to get to Quincy from Downieville not to mention that now there is also the Gold Lake Highway which cuts out some mileage northbound.

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Re: CA 49 from CA 16 over Yuba Pass to CA 89
« Reply #12 on: June 30, 2017, 03:03:22 AM »

Another factor in why LRN 36 really never was fully completely was the plunge in population in Sierra County in the 20th Century.  Sierra County would have had about 4,000 residents between 1900 to 1910 and only somewhere in the neighborhood of 2,500 by the time the Signed State Highway era began in the 1930s.  Given the population barely moved from that point through the rest of the 20th century really would have put LRN 36 low on the totem pull considering the diminishing stature of Sierra County after the mining heyday was long over.  Really though, Yuba Pass and 89 turned out to be a very viable route to get to Quincy from Downieville not to mention that now there is also the Gold Lake Highway which cuts out some mileage northbound.

According to rail historians, much of the labor force that built the WP line up the Feather River and across northern Nevada was composed of former miners laid off from played-out diggings in the northern Sierra; their experience with often dangerous underground situations paid off when the line had to tunnel through obstacles.  One particular problem was the long (a bit over a mile) Spring Garden tunnel, which bored beneath a ridge separating two branches of the upper Feather River between Quincy and Blairsden.  Since tunnel construction, even in the early 1900's, was still a labor-intensive (dig, blast, clear, repeat) process, problems that may have vexed the line's engineers were "old hat" to many of these former miners -- the Spring Garden dig encountered several underground streams that had to be either diverted or channeled -- usually the latter, where the tunnel was made wide enough to accommodate "gutters" on each side of slightly raised track bed to deal with the runoff (a common practice in Sierra gold mines and adapted for this purpose).   That tunnel is still in service today -- significantly enlarged to handle double-stack container traffic which won't fit under Donner snowsheds -- but still experiences occasional water issues during very rainy seasons. 
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Max Rockatansky

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Re: CA 49 from CA 16 over Yuba Pass to CA 89
« Reply #13 on: June 30, 2017, 01:41:19 PM »

Another factor in why LRN 36 really never was fully completely was the plunge in population in Sierra County in the 20th Century.  Sierra County would have had about 4,000 residents between 1900 to 1910 and only somewhere in the neighborhood of 2,500 by the time the Signed State Highway era began in the 1930s.  Given the population barely moved from that point through the rest of the 20th century really would have put LRN 36 low on the totem pull considering the diminishing stature of Sierra County after the mining heyday was long over.  Really though, Yuba Pass and 89 turned out to be a very viable route to get to Quincy from Downieville not to mention that now there is also the Gold Lake Highway which cuts out some mileage northbound.

According to rail historians, much of the labor force that built the WP line up the Feather River and across northern Nevada was composed of former miners laid off from played-out diggings in the northern Sierra; their experience with often dangerous underground situations paid off when the line had to tunnel through obstacles.  One particular problem was the long (a bit over a mile) Spring Garden tunnel, which bored beneath a ridge separating two branches of the upper Feather River between Quincy and Blairsden.  Since tunnel construction, even in the early 1900's, was still a labor-intensive (dig, blast, clear, repeat) process, problems that may have vexed the line's engineers were "old hat" to many of these former miners -- the Spring Garden dig encountered several underground streams that had to be either diverted or channeled -- usually the latter, where the tunnel was made wide enough to accommodate "gutters" on each side of slightly raised track bed to deal with the runoff (a common practice in Sierra gold mines and adapted for this purpose).   That tunnel is still in service today -- significantly enlarged to handle double-stack container traffic which won't fit under Donner snowsheds -- but still experiences occasional water issues during very rainy seasons.

Might as well shift the labor into infrastructure with mining industry dying down.  Really all those early moves with the rails and state highway system really made a lot of the modern roadways and transportation infrastructure possible given increasingly modern constraints from regulatory moves.  Funny to think that modern of the Trans-Sierra passages that actually were completed actually had a basis in previously established wagon routes or even railroads.  Roads like 180, 168, and 190 ultimately didn't have that population base from the mines even to really establish a preexisting pass of the Sierras which probably held them up long enough to be blocked for completion down the line in the 20th century.

On a side note, I went back and edited my original post to this thread with all the alignment information I could find for 49 south of Downieville to Placerville.  There are some really minor alignment shifts that I suspect north of Hoyt Crossing but I can't really any maps that provide the detail that I need to confirm since the roadways are so close to modern 49.

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Re: CA 49 from CA 16 over Yuba Pass to CA 89
« Reply #14 on: June 30, 2017, 03:46:09 PM »

The documents NE2 cites date from 1907; the concept of LRN 36 intersecting a route to Quincy was laid to rest 2 years later when a subsequent state bond issue authorized LRN 30, which took a more northerly route beginning in Oroville rather than Marysville.
But until 1963 the description of LR 36 still read as follows:
Quote
Route 36 is from Mount Pleasant Ranch, on the road between Quincy and Marysville, in a southeasterly direction via Eureka to Downieville, Sierra County.
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Re: CA 49 from CA 16 over Yuba Pass to CA 89
« Reply #15 on: June 30, 2017, 04:11:57 PM »

The documents NE2 cites date from 1907; the concept of LRN 36 intersecting a route to Quincy was laid to rest 2 years later when a subsequent state bond issue authorized LRN 30, which took a more northerly route beginning in Oroville rather than Marysville.
But until 1963 the description of LR 36 still read as follows:
Quote
Route 36 is from Mount Pleasant Ranch, on the road between Quincy and Marysville, in a southeasterly direction via Eureka to Downieville, Sierra County.

Yeah, the road, such as it was -- or at least its basic trajectory -- remained in the state system until the widespread deletions of 1965, although its purpose had essentially evaporated over the previous half-century.  LRN 36 was always a bit of an "outlier" in the network; but for a long time there were recurring local rumblings about the need for a direct route north to Quincy and the upper Feather River area independent of a ridge-bound E-W facility; these kept the concept on "life support" -- but after decades of inaction, the Division of Highways finally decided to pull the plug and delete the successor CA 194. 
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