The California Department of Transportation (Caltrans) has removed snow, cleared debris, and made the necessary repairs to open State Route 108/Sonora Pass to Kennedy Meadows. The road opened at 10:00 a.m. on Monday, April 19, 2021.
The diligent work of Caltrans crews enabled the opening of this section of the pass in time for the beginning of trout fishing season in the Eastern Sierra, aka Fishmas, which begins on Saturday, April 24, 2021. Tourists can now reach the Kennedy Meadows Resort and other attractions in the Sierra Nevada.
There is no estimated opening date for the full SR-108/Sonora Pass, although with the low snow totals this year, they are hoping to have the road open before the Memorial Day weekend.
Caltrans District 10 manages three trans-Sierra passes in the central Sierra that are closed during winter and generally open in spring: Ebbetts Pass/SR-4 in Alpine County, Sonora Pass/SR-108 (Tuolumne County), and Monitor Pass/SR-89 (Alpine County).
Caltrans recognizes the importance of this route to the region’s economy, which depends a great deal on tourism.
Last week The California Department of Transportation (Caltrans) opened Monitor Pass (Hwy 89) over the Sierra Nevada, with the focus moving to Ebbetts Pass (Hwy 4) and Sonora Pass (Hwy 108). Monitor Pass offers another way to Hwy 395 on the East Side, opening up access to Sierra spring skiing at Mammoth Mountain and in the backcountry.
Highway 108 over Sonora Pass leaves Hwy 49 in Sonora, CA, and rolls about 50 miles up to the Tuolumne/Mono County line at 9624′, before dropping 16 miles down to Highway 395 at Sonora Junction north of Bridgeport, CA. Highway 108 is the access for Dodge Ridge Ski Area, Eagle Meadows, Kennedy Meadows, Sonora Pass, and Leavitt Lake, all of which provide jumping-off points for backcountry skiing. Above Kennedy Meadows, this is a steep, winding, narrow, two-lane road.
Highway 4 over Ebbetts Pass leaves Highway 49 in Angel’s Camp, CA, and travels 61 miles from Arnold, CA over the 8736′ pass to Markleeville, CA. You can access Highway 89 to Highway 395 over Monitor Pass before you get to Markleeville. Highway 4 accesses Bear Valley Mountain Resort, Lake Alpine, Highland Lakes, and Ebbetts Pass. Above Lake Alpine, this is a steep, narrow, winding road, often with only a single lane. The current west side closer is at the east end of Lake Alpine, with crews clearing to near Mosquito Lake.
For current Caltrans highway information, check the Road Conditions page or QuickMap. Also, follow Caltrans District 9 and District 10 on Facebook.