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Santa Barbara mudslides - can I still drive from SB airport north?

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Jan 15th, 2018, 03:53 PM
  #21
 
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Just be glad that the tracks were opened in Montecito. Montecito mudslide latest: Train, Amtrak service starts again | The Tribune
Where do you get on the plane that lands in Santa Barbara? Let's hope that things improve by February 7.
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Jan 15th, 2018, 04:18 PM
  #22
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Vancouver Island/Vancouver/SFO/Santa Barbara (Air Canada codeshare with United)
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Jan 15th, 2018, 11:33 PM
  #23
 
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Oh I see what you're doing. You are attempting to use Nipomo as the trailhead to La Quinta via the 166 out of Nipomo. That's a bust! 166 is a mess with traffic trying to get around the 101 blockage. There have been acidents and one fatality so far on the 166. I drive by that intersection (166 & 101) and cringe at seeing the traffic.
People are being asked to take the 46 to the 5 if you're heading south.
You could reverse your trip by flying into Ontario, drive to La Quinta, then work your way North via the 5 north, 46 west, 101 South to Nipomo.
That teeny weeny bit of information changes things. We have family scattered from SB to Carp but won't go there any time soon. Can't.
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Jan 16th, 2018, 07:00 AM
  #24
 
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Status on trains heading north out of Santa Barbara from local this morning:

There are TONS of people trying to head north. People are standing, sitting on the floor, stairwells are full of standing people.
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Jan 16th, 2018, 07:01 AM
  #25
 
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Yes bear900 is right. Stay off 166. I drove it once (years ago) and vow never to do it again. The other airport to consider is Burbank. The Amtrak station is across the street from the airport entrance (walkable).
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Jan 16th, 2018, 07:08 AM
  #26
 
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Doesn't Air Canada/United fly YVR-SFO-PSP?

Surely that is easier if you are trying to get to La Quinta.
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Jan 16th, 2018, 11:25 AM
  #27
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Just to clarify briefly, the plan was 4 days in Nipomo with Friend 1; then 4 days in La Quinta with Friend 2 (or the reverse). And yes, I had thought 166 to 5 could be my plan B drive between the two.

I did go ahead and cancel and my friends were very understanding. I will try again at a future date when that part of the world becomes more "normalized" (is there such a thing as "normal" any more? I hope for us all that this devastation and disaster is not the "new normal").

I also wanted to thank all of you again for all the extremely helpful information. I could have spent hours researching and still not been able to access the local perspective that you provided to me.
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Jan 16th, 2018, 02:43 PM
  #28
 
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I'm glad you decided to wait.

Interesting story that just happened this morning:

I had a business meeting in old Orcutt (south of Santa Maria) and was sitting on a sidewalk table in front of a café while waiting for my client. An older couple walked out of the café talking to a younger family. I heard the older couple say they were here from Montecito, actually Romero Canyon, staying with friends while evacuated. Their house survived but the one across the street was swept away. They complained about all the lookie loos as they were evacuating. The younger couple as it turns out were both CHP Officers that lived in Orcutt and they're territory is Santa Barbara County.

When the older couple drove off in their brand new Jaguar, I approached the younger couple and asked a few questions about Santa Barbara. He confirmed it was Milpas Street south on the 101 to the Ventura county line that was shut down. I asked their opinion about a timeline for the 101 to reopen. Neither were optimistic. The husband felt it may be another 3 weeks. They get access that the public doesn't and see up close the damage. The wife was emphatic about how much debris was still on the freeway and they confirmed there is still muddy water flowing onto it. We talked about the talc-like soot on the ground that repels water and they agreed that even the slightest rain will have a hard time absorbing into the ground and would just runoff.

We talked about the 166 and he said you would have to be crazy to drive it there have been so many accidents. On my way back north on the 101 I had to cross where the 166 ends at the 101. I saw someone with a camera on a tripod but everything was blocked by heavy traffic and trucks, truck, trucks. He agreed the best away around would be the 126 to the 5 to the 46 then the 101 if south of the county line and wanting to go north. Reverse if wanting to go south on the coast.

He mentioned a few extra cars have been added to the trains but it was still hectic. Pretty much sums up all the information posted here.
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Jan 17th, 2018, 10:35 AM
  #29
 
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For those of you that are on the Fauxfors Friends Facebook page, I just shared a link with photos of the mudslides.
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Jan 21st, 2018, 05:36 PM
  #30
 
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With a lot of 24 hour per day work, The 101 opened from Santa Barbara south as of about 4 hours ago. Now lets hope a Federal inspector doesn't have to declare it open.
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Jan 22nd, 2018, 08:35 AM
  #31
 
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So glad the highway is open again. Water still is not available to home's in in Montecito and when it is restored there will be a boil order for an extended time.
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Jan 22nd, 2018, 08:22 PM
  #32
 
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Beaches are still closed, as are many streets in Montecito. It is important for travelers to know that google maps, Waze and other gps systems will try to route you through the destruction which is actually roadblocked! Do not trust it! You can drive on the 101 for now, that is all, no exits to Montecito are open. This is changing day by day but will be a long term concern. Apparently several areas with bridges are condemned which they estimate will take weeks, if not months to repair.

Many beaches are closed... they had to dump the mud and that’s where it ended up.
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Jan 23rd, 2018, 05:22 PM
  #33
 
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Montecito is only a drive-by on the 101 for the foreseeable future. Only work crews and reporters are allowed into the evacuation areas.

But Santa Barbara and towns to the NW, like Solvang and Los Olivos and beyond, could sure use the visitors!
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Jan 24th, 2018, 09:20 AM
  #34
 
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Originally Posted by Jean View Post
But Santa Barbara and towns to the NW, like Solvang and Los Olivos and beyond, could sure use the visitors!
Absolutely! But do watch the weather. Any new heavy rain storms could cause more of the same
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