After heavy snow, Mt. Waterman ski resort remains closed because of road damage

Leo Stallworth Image
Friday, March 31, 2023
Mt. Waterman ski resort remains closed amid damaged roads
Mt. Waterman ski resort has remained closed for weeks after a giant sinkhole opened up on Angeles Crest Highway.

LA CANADA FLINTRIDGE, Calif. (KABC) -- For Mt. Waterman ski resort owner Rick Metcalf the fresh powder from the series of record-breaking storms is bittersweet.

It's bitter given that the primary road leading to the resort - State Route 2, the Angeles Crest highway in the Angeles National Forest - is collapsing.

A giant sinkhole created by the storms has left the resort closed for weeks.

"It just caused absolute havoc on the roads. We've had avalanches come down to fill it up even more and probably the most important thing is we had a road slide out down about 46 miles up from the bottom of the crest," Metcalf said.

Road crews have been working diligently to shore up the damaged roads.

"They just ceased everything going up there. So Caltrans has been working their tails off to get it down but it's a tall task. We're really hoping to get it up as soon as possible to get all those happy skiers and snowboarders on the hill to enjoy all the powder," he said.

Marc Bischoff with Caltrans says the agency has been closing SR 2 since the storms in January.

"We've been opening and closing State Route 2 since the storms in January and most of that was based on the fact that we had continuing snow and ice. But at this point with the last several storms we have some serious damage on portions of the roadway. We had multiple rock and mud slides but we also have a section where the roadway collapsed," Bischoff said.

Bischoff says the road to the ski resort is closed indefinitely for now.

It's bad news for Metcalf and for the more than two dozen employees and more than 1,000 visitors who visit the resort a day. He says they would be enjoying the slopes if they were able to get to them.

Despite it all, Metcalf remains optimistic.

"We'll get them up there. We'll get the mountain open and look forward to it," he said.