Tassajara Road report

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Re: Tassajara Road report

by Basil » Mon Jul 24, 2023 5:41 pm

Greatly appreciate your replies!

We went on Jul 22d in a 4wd old Ford Explorer fully loaded with people and gear.

Good conditions fairly easy road all the way to the Zen Mountain Center, we didn't notice any signs that it was closed. We met a few people at the Pine Ridge Trailhead and at the center.
The weather was very hot (100F when 70 in Big Sur). If you go slow, you should make it even in a Prius. There are some steep grades, so downshift, use engine braking, and don't overheat your brakes.

Re: Tassajara Road report

by Betsy M » Wed Jul 19, 2023 6:38 pm

To echo BP22, the road is in great shape. Watch for random rocks, both sharp and occasionally larger in size. There is a slip out a mile before China Camp, marked by cones. Stay to the inside. Pretty sure you could get there in a Prius or other low clearance vehicle if you wanted to save on gas.

Re: Tassajara Road report

by BP22 » Wed Jul 19, 2023 6:20 pm

I was there up to China Camp a month ago and the road is in good condition. clear and graded. Lots of little sharp rocks though, I got a flat tire, so avoid those. You are good to go.

Re: Tassajara Road report

by Basil » Wed Jul 19, 2023 1:00 pm

Hi! Any recent info on Tassajara road conditions? We want to go towards China camp there this weekend using a fwd ford explorer, but are somewhat concerned by the road being closed due to "Storm Damage" according to Monterey county website (https://www.co.monterey.ca.us/governmen ... nformation). Shall we expect the usual "proceed at your own risk" conditions, or something more severe (like fallen trees) that we actually won't be able to overcome in a fwd?

Re: Tassajara Road report

by K Vandevere » Fri Jun 02, 2023 4:22 pm

I drove a low-clearance car to China Camp a few weeks ago. The road was graded smooth and the only problem was dodging the Coulter pine cones.

Re: Tassajara Road report

by ale22 » Thu May 18, 2023 4:18 pm

Went on a day-hike to Pine Valley on 4/29/2023. There was no official signage (at least that was easily visible). For what Tassajara Road can be, the conditions were not bad. There was the occasional small dirt slide or small rock, but nothing bad. Overall decent condition from what I remember. If you have done it before, then you can most likely do it now unless there have been major changes in the past 2 weeks.

Re: Tassajara Road report

by adagioca » Thu May 18, 2023 3:31 pm

Called LPNF Monterey District about accessing Pine Valley/Pine Ridge trail with a group of boy scouts driving up that road. Answer was yes and no. Forest Service does not deemed the road closed but MOCO Roads does (nothing new there). He said the road was pretty bad in places. Apparently lots of the county resources are tied up further south with Nacimiento-Fergusson Rd, North Coast and South Coast

I have driven this road a couple of times and know what to expect but looking for an update if anyone knows how it is looking like.


Re: Tassajara Road report

by jack_glendening » Fri Apr 15, 2022 10:19 am

That closure notice on the Monterey County Public Works website has been there for months and months. So long I can't remember exactly when it first appeared, but possibly has been there ever since the Dolan Fire - after which barriers with "closed" signs appeared at the start of the dirt section of Tassajara Road (though with gap to allow access for those who wished). Those barriers and signs disappeared awhile back - but the website still has the "closed" notice. FYI the USFS does NOT consider it closed (whereas they did immediately after after the Dolan fire). So currently that notice seems to have nothing to do with the actual status of Tassajara Road, but possibly left there for some bureaucratic reason.

Which is a long way of saying that the notice has nothing to do with any possible scraping.

Re: Tassajara Road report

by clindsey » Sun Apr 10, 2022 3:38 pm

The Monterey County road closures website https://www.co.monterey.ca.us/governmen ... nformation has a notice that Tassajara Rd "will be closed at Los Padres Forest due to hazardous conditions."

Sounds like they're planning to close the road to do the scraping you mentioned. Was there any indication of when that might happen? I'm planning to go to China Camp in about a week or so, would like to know if I'll be able to drive in.


Tassajara Road report

by jack_glendening » Sun Apr 03, 2022 12:15 pm

Tassajara Road is OK to China Camp, though with deep ruts in places. Beyond Black Butte, where road starts to descend, is much rougher and rockier. I averaged 8mph from there to Horse Pasture Trail. Beyond that, becomes a "dirt' road again. I saw two scrapers parked on the way out - hopefully road may be scraped soon with imminent opening of Tassajara Zen Center.