As a fire department we’ve seen a lot of car accidents in the canyon. Too many.

We’ve learned that … Canyon driving conditions not only vary with weather but also vary throughout the day, and throughout the canyon (along the drive). Even experienced drivers can have a bad experience. 

Canyon Cornering problems

As we head into fall, and rain and snow and ice will soon be upon us, we learn – sometimes belatedly – that tires maybe don’t have the tread they need, that we should’ve put on snow tires sooner, and that conditions change rapidly. Don’t get caught out. Slow down for corners. The canyon certainly has some challenging ones:

  • Fire Station #1 (Middle Canyon) we’ve had people take it too fast, and threaten the safety of firefighters training there. (We’ve also had a car go through the station wall.) Please drive slowly here to respect and protect our Firefighters! The Advisory Speed Limit at this corner is 25 MPH.
  • Coming up, the curve below La Joya del Monte Dr is tricker than drivers expect. (One year we had three separate cars in the creek there within a short period of each other, all unrelated.)
  • Deep in the lower canyon where the rock side-walls are high and shade the road, and black ice persists (even when it is dry roads up top) on all corners.
  • The S-curve above Chapel-in-the-Hills causes problems in both directions, especially for late in the year or early in the year motorcycles, but all vehicles when ice or water is across the road.
  • The curve by the pull-out on Highway 72 below Camp Eden Road in both directions, but especially coming down.
  • … and there are many more, on Highway 72 and off Highway 72. Does your family know the challenging spots on their routes? Do you have other corners to share with other Canyonites?

Mixed Conditions in the Canyon

We know that temperatures drop as we go up in elevation, right? That said, we do get temperature inversions where the top of the canyon is warm and dry, but lower (even middle canyon) might be foggy or icy, with black ice patches on the road. What also catches some drivers in the afternoon is where the sun has dried the roads up here, but down in the shaded deep canyon things remain icy. Do not let good conditions in one part on the canyon allow you to lose caution in others. 

Canyon Driver Tips & Reminders

Here are some quick reminders for Canyon Drivers. Do you know them all? Do your loved ones?  Please teach/show them to both new drivers and drivers new to the Canyon: