State Route 4 East - Alpine County

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Postmiles for California 4 along the Ebbetts Pass National Scenic Byway acquired from the official byway website.

California 4 east
Eastbound California 4 (Ebbetts Pass Highway) enters the unincorporated community of Bear Valley, home of Bear Valley Mountain Resort, just east of the county line. Photo taken 07/18/09.
California 4 turns northerly from Bear Valley along side Osborne Hill to meet California 207 in three miles. Woodfords, where California 89 intersects California 88, appears on mileage signage for the first time here. Photo taken 07/18/09.
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The next intersection along California 4 (Ebbetts Pass Highway) east is with Bear Valley Road north to the Bear Valley Village and Bear Lake. All motorist services and a variety of recreational opportunities are available in Bear Valley Village; the downhill ski resort lies ahead via California 207 north. Photos taken 07/18/09.
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Traveling north along side Osborne Hill, California 4 (Ebbetts Pass Highway) advances toward Lake Alpine. Campgrounds, which are popular in the summer as a mountain getaway, are located on the south side of the state route ahead. Photos taken 07/18/09.
Entering Poison Canyon, SR 4 (Ebbetts Pass Highway) intersects SR 207 (Mount Reba Road) north to Bear Valley Ski Area. Operated under permit from Stanislaus National Forest, the ski area is very popular in the winter, especially with locals and visitors from the San Francisco Bay Area. Photo taken 07/18/09.
SR 207 (Mount Reba Road) stems north from this intersection. The state route measures just 1.36 miles from SR 4 to the parking lot for Bear Valley Mountain Resort Ski Area. Photo taken 07/18/09.
Just east of SR 207 along SR 4 is Silvertip Campground, located just west of Lake Alpine. Photo taken 07/18/09.
During winter, the state route is not plowed for snow beyond this point. A wide spot here allows for snow plow trucks to turn around and return to Bear Valley. California 4 narrows significantly ahead and continues east to Lake Alpine. Photo taken 07/18/09.
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California 4 narrows to a one-and-a-half-lane configuration, with no centerline stripe beyond the winter closure gate. The highway retains this configuration past Lake Alpine, Hermit Valley, and Ebbetts Pass to the East Fork of the Carson River at Centerville Pass. Photos taken 07/18/09.
Eastbound California 4 at the turnoff for the west shore of Lake Alpine. Activities here include a picnic area, swimming, and camping. Photo taken 07/18/09.
The next left turn from California 4 east leads to the Lake Alpine Lodge, which includes a general store, restaurant, bar, cabins, boat rental and laundry facility. Photo taken 07/18/09.
California 4 continues along the north shore of Lake Alpine (el. 7,303 feet), a reservoir managed by the Northern California Power Agency. Photo taken 07/18/09.
This view looks east along California 4 near the east end of Lake Alpine. While the lake is hidden by trees from the state route, campground parking allows access to the boat ramp and beaches. Photo taken 07/18/09.
Due to the steep grades at both Pacific Grade Summit and Ebbetts Pass, coupled with the winding, curving nature of the roadway, trucks and cars with trailers are not advised on California 4 east of the entrance to Silver Valley Campground. Photo taken 07/18/09.
Ascending the Pacific Grade, summer traffic along California 4 east drops off. Limited services are available from here east to Markleeville, the seat of Alpine County. Photo taken 07/18/09.
The narrow road continues to gain elevation and sees continuing changes to the ecology of the area. California 4 is designated the Ebbetts Pass National Scenic Byway. This area is known as Woodchuck Basin, which is located at post mile ALP 5.40. Photo taken 07/18/09.
California 4 approaches Cape Horn Vista (at post mile ALP 6.70), made distinctive by adjacent rock outcroppings. The view at the turnout here offers a look east, south, and west toward Elephant Rock and the Carson-Iceberg Wilderness Area of Stanislaus National Forest. Photo taken 07/18/09.
Continuing from the Cape Horn Vista turnoff on SR 4 east. Located at an elevation of 7,960 feet, the vista point provides views of Dardenelle Range (including Elephant Rock) and the surrounding wilderness area. Photo taken 07/18/09.
Passing north of Carson-Iceburg Wilderness area on SR 4 east. Relatively little traffic utilizes this remote section of state route. Photo taken 07/18/09.
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This 1982 bridge carries California 4 (Ebbetts Pass National Scenic Byway) over Jackass Gulch. The highway briefly widens to two full lanes before narrowing back down to 1.5 lanes. Photos taken 07/18/09.
Progressing east near Stanislaus Meadow, California 4 passes through more conifer forests. Photo taken 07/18/09.
Oncoming traffic can be a bit disconcerting as seen here on eastbound California 4 near Stanislaus Meadow (which is located at postmile ALP 8.50). Photo taken 07/18/09.
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California 4 passes by Mosquito Lake at Postmile ALP 10.50 at elevation 8,050 feet to the immediate west of Pacific Grade Summit. A popular fishing site, this lake's water is even colder than Lake Alpine. Photos taken 07/18/09.
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Eastbound California 4 crests over Pacific Grade Summit at an elevation 8,050 feet. From here, the highway will descend into Hermit Valley and then ascend again to Ebbetts Pass. Photos taken 07/18/09.
Leaving Pacific Grade Summit, California 4 lowers along a precipitous cliff with no guardrails. Ahead is a series of downhill, slow-moving switchbacks. Photo taken 07/18/09.
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California 4 proceeds through a series of switchbacks from the Pacific Grade Summit (el. 8,050 feet) down to Pacific Valley (el. 7,600 feet). Photos taken 07/18/09.
A 1937 bridge carries California 4 over Pacific Creek in Pacific Valley. The span at postmile ALP 11.99 was widened and modernized in 1986. Photo taken 07/18/09.
Towering walls of granite line California 4 north of the crossing over Pacific Creek. Photo taken 07/18/09.
Approaching Hermit Valley, SR 4 spans the North Fork of the Mokelumne River at postmile ALP 12.94. Dating also to 1937, the bridge was widened and modernized in 1986. Photo taken 07/18/09.
Postmiles begin to appear in earnest again as SR 4 east advances through Hermit Valley. Photo taken 07/18/09.
Passing through Hermit Valley at an elevation of 7,080 feet, SR 4 begins another climb toward Ebbetts Peak and Ebbetts Pass. Photo taken 07/18/09.
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California 4 parallels the North Fork of Mokelumne River on the ascent toward Ebbetts Pass. Large boulders and towering trees line both sides of the narrow roadway. The route makes a switchback at The Elbow (el. 7,955 feet), where a turnout is located. Photos taken 07/18/09.
A turnoff links California 4 with Highland Lakes Road south to Highland Lakes (near Tryon Peak, elevation 9,970 feet). A campground is located at Highland Lakes. Photo taken 07/18/09.
Increasing elevation yields different biomes. California 4 sees juniper trees and sagebrush, which portends the drier climate found in Nevada. The wetter climate found in the foothills that yields redwood trees is not found here. Photo taken 07/18/09.
Looking south from California 4 is this view of Tryon Peak, which tops out at an elevation 9,970 feet. Photo taken 07/18/09.
Continuing uphill between Ebbetts Peak and Bloomfield Meadow along California 4 east. Photo taken 07/18/09.
Eastbound California 4 passes postmile ALP 18.00. Photo taken 07/18/09.
Highland Peak (el. 10,935 feet) comes into view from eastbound California 4 just before it reaches Ebbetts Pass. Photo taken 07/18/09.
California 4 leaves Stanislaus National Forest and enters Humboldt-Toiyabe National Forest at Ebbetts Pass. Largely found in eastern California and Nevada, Humboldt-Toiyabe is the largest national forest in the Lower 48 States. Photo taken 07/18/09.
California 4 crosses over the Sierra Nevada Mountains at Ebbetts Pass (el. 8,730 feet). During the winter and in times of high snowfall, this pass is closed. Photo taken 07/18/09.
This sign provides a brief history of Ebbetts Pass, including its role in providing a route from Silver City, Nevada, west to San Francisco when it opened in 1864. Photo taken 07/18/09.
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Looking northward from Ebbetts Pass toward the volcanic mountain of Ebbetts Peak (el. 9,180 feet). Photos taken 07/18/09.
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Viewing the mountainous area around Ebbetts Pass as from a nearby trail. Photos taken 07/18/09.
California 4 intersects the Pacific Crest Trail just north of Ebbetts Pass. California 4 descends on the leeward side of the Sierra Nevada and will not again achieve the same elevation as seen at Ebbetts Pass. Photo taken 07/18/09.
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Kinney Reservoir (el. 8,353 feet) lies just west of California 4 within the ensuing mile north from Ebbetts Pass. A popular fishing spot for the lake is located at postmile ALP 19.5. Photos taken 07/18/09.
California 4 runs along side Kinney Creek north from the reservoir. The waterway is out of view below the state route at postmile ALP 20.0. Photo taken 07/18/09.
California 4 crosses over Upper Cascade Creek at postmile 21.79 on a 1939 bridge that has not been widened since then. The Caltrans District 10 Bridge Log show this span at postmile 21.73. Photo taken 07/18/09.
Curving eastward, a sweeping view of the Silver Creek valley comes into view as California 4 descends 1,000 feet in elevation over the next three miles. Photo taken 07/18/09.
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A wall of granite lines the edge of California 4 as the highway lowers through a series of switch backs and hairpin turns. Photos taken 07/18/09.
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California 4 passes by postmile ALP 22.00. Photos taken 07/18/09.
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Navigating through a series of switchbacks, including Cadillac Curve, California 4 travels by Noble Lake Trailhead and Silver Creek Campground. Rising to the south along this stretch is towering Highland Peak (el. 10,935 feet). Photos taken 07/18/09.
The first switchback curve sign along California 4 east since leaving Lake Alpine appears after Silver Creek campground. Photo taken 07/18/09.
Lowering to 7,000 feet, eastbound California 4 passes through winter closure gates, then passes over Raymond Medo Creek (postmile ALP 24.47, built 1963). Photo taken 07/18/09.
Expanded to two lanes again, California 4 parallels the Silver Creek in a northeastern direction toward Centreville Flat. Photo taken 07/18/09.
California 4 crosses over Silver Creek twice, first on this 1952 bridge. Photo taken 07/18/09.
Advancing northeast through the scenic Silver Creek valley toward Centerville Flat. Silver Hill rises to the northeast. Photo taken 07/18/09.
Spanning Silver Creek again, California 4 moves to its north bank. Photo taken 07/18/09.
Beyond another winter closure gate, eastbound California 4 enters the site of Centreville Flat, a former mining camp and today a campground. Wolf Creek Road stems south from the state route here and follows the East Fork of Carson River and Wolf Creek into the Carson Iceberg Wilderness. Photo taken 07/18/09.
Resuming a northward course, California 4 follows the East Fort of the Carson River from Centerville Flat to California 89. Photo taken 07/18/09.
SR 4 intersects SR 89 at postmile ALP 31.68. North from here to Woodfords via Markleeville, SR 89 is signed alone. However, the southbound direction of SR 89 along the same segment is cosigned with SR 4 west. Photo taken 07/18/09.
SR 4 concludes at SR 89 at the site of Mt. Bullion. SR 89 travels east over Monitor Pass to U.S. 395 near Topaz Lake and north to SR 88 at Woodfords Junction. SR 88 provides the connection into the Carson Valley in Nevada, ultimately ending at U.S. 395 south of Carson City. Photo taken 07/18/09.



Photo Credits:

07/18/09 by AARoads

Page Updated 07-21-2018.