For Immediate Release: 10/11/2022
New Road Safety enhancements at Mount Diablo State Park
Acting District Superintendent
Diablo Range District
Mount Diablo, Calif.— The California Department of Parks and Recreation is celebrating the completion of 30 new bike turnouts at Mount Diablo State Park. These turnouts allow bicyclists, who move at slower speeds as they pedal uphill, to pull out of the main traffic lane into their own lane so that vehicles can pass safely. This priority project was funded by Senate Bill 129, spearheaded by Senator Steve Glazer (D-Orinda).
“The new bike turnout lanes on Mount Diablo will make it safer for cyclists and motorists to get up and down the mountain, making this precious resource more accessible to the region’s residents and to visitors,” Senator Glazer said. “I was happy to help the Mount Diablo Cyclists and the Parks Department complete this important project.”
On Saturday, October 15, 2022, there will be an event to commemorate the recent road safety enhancements at Mount Diablo State Park. The event will be at 11:00 a.m. at Curry Point on Mount Diablo along South Gate Road. State Parks staff, local officials and several cycling groups will be in attendance to answer media questions.
“Safety on the park roadway is everyone’s responsibility,” said recently retired Diablo Range Superintendent Eddie Guaracha. “Whether you are a frequent visitor or a first-time visitor, please take your time on the mountain road and enjoy the scenery.”
To date there have been 48 Bike Turnouts added on Mount Diablo. Along the South Gate Road there are a total of 18 turnouts, 17 along North Gate Road and 13 along Summit Road. $1,500,000 in the California State Budget was allotted to fund the Bike Turnout Project in the 2021/2022 fiscal year. That money added to the 17 existing turnouts on the 11-mile road leading up the mountain. Public safety at this popular destination remains a priority for State Parks. That’s why over the past few years a number of safety enhancements have been implemented such as double yellow line striping on the roads, designating passing areas, repaving portions of the road, improving safety signage and installing designated bike turnouts.
Share the road
Visitors to Mount Diablo are encouraged to share the road. Here are some tips to keep your visit safe and enjoyable:
- Check the weather, bring water and wear layers.
- Don’t forget sunscreen.
- Obey park rules.
- Park in designated areas.
- Tell someone where you are going and when you plan on returning.
- Help us keep animals wild by viewing them from a safe distance. Do not touch or feed them.
Drivers and Cyclists
- Observe posted speed limits.
- Stay in your lane on blind curves and do not cut corners.
- Do not pass on double-yellow lines until you have a clear view of oncoming traffic and it is safe to do so.
- Wearing headphones that cover both ears is illegal. Wear only one headphone if you have to.
- Use the “buddy system” – hike with a friend or family member.
- Drink and carry plenty of water (a minimum of 1 quart every 2 hours).
- Wear sturdy, comfortable, closed-toed shoes to help prevent injury.
- Stay within designated trails. Do not walk off-trail or enter closed areas.
- Check the weather, bring water and know where to find water. Bring snacks for you and your horse.
- Know your level. Trails can be beginner, intermediate or advanced.
- Groom and condition your horse before leaving the barn.
- Bring your own first aid kit and cell phone. Attach it to your body, not your horse or saddle.
- Ride with a buddy.
- Wear a helmet and protective clothing.
- Carry a compass and a trail map.
- Although the rule is that cyclists and hikers yield to horses, be prepared for that not to happen.
- If your horse kicks, tie something red in its tail.
- Make sure to leave enough distance between horses. You should be able to see the hooves of the horse in front of you.
About Mount Diablo State Park
Located in the San Francisco Bay Area to the east of Walnut Creek, people have been drawn for generations to Mount Diablo for its spectacular views from the summit which extend over 100 miles in all directions on a clear day. Visitors have been attracted by the complex geology that has created amazing rock formations such as the “wind caves” at Rock City, and by the mountain’s variety of habitats which are home to over 600 species of plants and an amazing array of wildlife such as butterflies, bats and birds of prey, tarantulas, bobcats, lizards, snakes and deer.
Last year Mount Diablo celebrated its 100th year as a State Park. Though 100 years is a long history as a park, the importance of Mount Diablo was recognized long before that. For thousands of years Native Americans were the caretakers of this land. Many groups considered and treated the mountain as a sacred place and continue to do so today.
Since becoming a park in 1921, Mount Diablo has been protected as a natural area, and over the past 100 years the park has grown from only a few hundred acres to over 20,000 acres. Today it is a destination for those who would like to view wildlife and wildflowers, experience beautiful views, hike, camp, picnic, run, cycle, climb, ride horses, or gaze at the stars.
Examples of newly installed bicycle turnouts at Mount Diablo State Park.
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