UPDATE: Grapevine an Icy Mess, Highway 38 Re-Opens After Hundreds of Vehicles Were Stuck Overnight to Big Bear


(KNX 1070) -- The snow created havoc for motorists this long weekend.

Those headed to Big Bear this President's Day weekend were told to be prepared for a little extra traffic.

And that materialized in the form of hundreds of vehicles that ended up stuck on Highway 38 overnight Sunday because of icy conditions.

Highway 38 is re-open as of 4 a.m. Monday morning, according to Emily Leinen, Public Information Officer for Caltrans District 8 on Monday morning.

She said Highway 38 was closed "because people did not bring their chains and they attempted to drive in icy conditions. This caused a blockage and we were unable plow and service roads because it. Once vehicles were removed, we were able to clean the roads."

She emphasized that people need to bring snow chains.

There were news reports of people sleeping in their cars overnight or leaving their cars on the road. There were no injuries reported.

Highway 38, which takes motorists through the eastern Redlands area, is open at Hatchery Dr. Chains are required on all vehicles except four wheel drive vehicles with snow tires on all four wheels from Grout Creek Bridge to Big Bear Dam, according to the California Department of Transportation online.

Highway 18, which takes motorists by Lake Arrowhead and Running Springs, is closed at Green Valley Lake Rd to Big Bear Dam, according to Leinen, who added this closure will likely be in place for over a week. She said otherwise, Highway 18 is open everywhere else. 

SR-38 and SR-18 between Big Bear and Lucerne Valley are both open. If you don’t need to travel, please stay off of the roads. Bring chains, it’s the law. https://t.co/bYOw98Bs0j

— Caltrans District 8 (@Caltrans8) February 18, 2019


SBCO: SR-38 at Hatchery Drive, San Bernardino, all lanes open. #Caltrans8

— Caltrans District 8 (@Caltrans8) February 18, 2019

Update as of 2/17 at 11:00 PM:SR-38 is closed between Hatchery Dr. and Bryant St. due to hundreds of stuck vehicles, making Caltrans unable to plow. #bigbear #caltrans #californiahighwaypatrol @Caltrans8

— CHP Arrowhead (@CHPArrowhead) February 18, 2019


Meanwhile, the Grapevine, which was shut down Sunday night in both directions because of snow accumulations and accidents, was re-opened with CHP pacing the highway. The northbound lanes had to be re-opened by CHP Monday afternoon. Southbound lanes are open.

Update from CHP regarding Northbound I-5! https://t.co/rPLWq7AZMJ

— Caltrans District 6 (@CaltransDist6) February 18, 2019

Cars are lined up near the I-5 northbound entrance in #Castaic. Drivers are just itching to get rolling again after the freeway was shutdown. Southbound lanes are open. @KNX1070 pic.twitter.com/OxvY8ILcUg

— Jon Baird (@KNXBaird) February 18, 2019

Cars & trucks are lined up in #Castaic, ready to go. But. There is still no word on when northbound lanes of Interstate 5 will reopen. The on-ramp is blocked off. @KNX1070 pic.twitter.com/ivdyxTVutD

— Jon Baird (@KNXBaird) February 18, 2019

GRAPEVINE: I-5 remains open with CHP pacing at this hour.The northbound closure has moved up to State Route 138, but is still closed over the summit at this time. https://t.co/1oWMwFyT3B

— Caltrans District 6 (@CaltransDist6) February 18, 2019

Speaking with KNX reporter David Singer, Bear Mountain Resort's Marketing Manager Justin Kanton says, "We just want to urge people to take their time, make sure you're carrying chains in your vehicle, and just give yourself a little bit of extra time to get up the hill, and then also when you're heading back down. Just make sure you get up here, have fun, and be safe getting home."