Tony Reed
Del Norte Triplicate

Caltrans’ crews and officials are optimistic a landslide that has blocked both lanes of Last Chance Grade will be cleared soon, but say the timeline is still dependent on the weather.

“The first thing we want to to do is make sure no more rocks will fall,” said Caltrans Spokesman Myles Cochrane.

He said recent sunny weather has helped crews working near mile marker 14.7. He said while the forecast calls for clearer weather, personnel are staying alert.

Cochrane said crews and others will continue to monitor the slide around the clock and are ready to hold back traffic if anything should come down on the roadway.

“Sometimes, even with no bad weather, additional material could come down,” he said. “But there’s no definite way to know, that’s why we have people remaining on site.”

The National Weather Service in Eureka predicts that skies will stay clear Saturday through Monday.

Asked about any other major closures on U.S. 101, Cochrane gave the all clear.

“We have U.S. 101 open from Crescent City to the Bay Area,” he said.

Cochrane said crews on the ground have been getting some encouragement as well.

“We’ve been getting thumbs up from people as they drive by, and that feels good,” he said. “I think there’s some comfort in seeing Last Chance Grade still open.”

Michael Hawkins, spokesman for the Del Norte County Unified School District, said buses over Last Chance Grade have resumed.

“We put messages out saying everything is back to normal,” he said, “so we’re back up and running.”