On 5/11/2020 at approximately 1700 hours, Macy Bounds was driving a Jeep Wrangler northbound on South Lake Rd. south of SR-168 (west) at approximately 55 MPH. Trujillo and Thomas were passengers in the Jeep Wrangler. Bounds entered a right hand curve in the roadway at an excessive speed for the roadway conditions, and subsequently lost control of the Jeep. The Jeep fishtailed, went off the road, and overturned in the sagebrush, ejecting Bounds and Trujillo, who were unrestrained. After the collision, passing motorists stopped to assist the injured parties. CHP, Inyo County Sheriff deputies, Cal Fire, Bishop Fire Department, and Symons all responded to the scene. Subsequent to an investigation, Bounds was arrested for Driving Under The Influence of alcohol causing injuries to other parties.
The South Lake Road Reconstruction planned for the 2020 season will begin the week of May 11 The contractor, Hat Creek Construction & Materials, Inc., has been completing survey work in advance of construction work.
Construction delays will typically be 30 minutes during the day. However, when work requires it, Inyo County and the forest will permit longer closures. This could include three-hour closures twice a day.
This work is considered essential and Hat Creek Construction is taking all necessary steps to adhere to social distancing. This includes providing travel trailers for their crews.
There will be no night work, weekend work, or work during holiday weekends, although traffic controls will still be in place. Campgrounds along the South Lake Road remain closed under a Regional Closure Order through May 15.
Local businesses and services along South Lake Road will remain open and accessible during construction this year. Please check with individual businesses about early season services.
During construction, roadside parking, day use parking, and the parking areas for South Lake will be significantly reduced, and at times, closed. Visitors to the area should plan that parking will not be available and plan to be dropped off or use local shuttle services when feasible. Shuttle services may be limited in their capacity to serve demand based on social distancing guidelines. Thoughtful planning is helpful during any major construction project. This year coordinated planning is required for a successful visit to South Lake Road destinations.
The project is being completed under a funding request from Inyo County through Federal Highways Administration (FHWA). The road will be re-paved and needs significant repairs for safety and includes a new bicycle staging area. The Inyo National Forest is also completing trailhead parking and campground improvements in conjunction with this project.
South Lake Repaving Starts September 8
Inyo National Forest:
As a reminder, the Inyo National Forest is planning to repave and improve parking lot drainage at the South Lake Day Use and Trailhead parking lots this September. This much-needed work will also better protect natural resources in the area by reducing siltation.
This closure will have a significant impact on recreationalists to this popular area. The South Lake parking lots will be closed from September 8, 2015 until October 30, 2015 (seven weeks).
Boat ramp and trailer parking will not be available during the closure. Recreational vehicles and vehicles with trailers will not be permitted use of the South Lake Road beyond Bishop Creek Lodge during this construction closure.
Roadside parking will be authorized along South Lake Road, down canyon from Parchers Resort. Please do not park at Parchers Resort or at Rainbow Pack Station unless you are a customer.
Hiking access to South Lake, Bishop Pass Trail, and Treasure Lakes will be via Parchers Resort and the Rainbow Pack Station. It is approximately one mile to connect to the Bishop Pass Trail at South Lake from this location.
“The Inyo National Forest realizes this closure will be inconvenient to recreational users of South Lake and that the reconstruction activities will affect many recreational activities,” said Ed Armenta, Forest Supervisor. “We request your patience in the short-term during this project that will dramatically improve the experience in the long-term.”