Folks in the know who don’t mind circuitous back road routes and hairpin turns have been using Pinehurst Road in Canyon as a shortcut from Moraga to Piedmont/Montclair/Oakland for years.
On Monday, we received calls from frustrated locals reporting a collision between an inbound 18-wheeler hauling chickens and a small outbound passenger car – the impact pinning the car into the canyon wall and choking traffic through the area.
Needless to say, the road was blocked, the chickens upset and though there were no injuries there was damage and the potential for possible future encounters driven home to those who use the route.
“All large trucks should be banned from Pinehurst and Canyon Roads,” wrote Catherine, who was caught in the resulting jam after Monday’s crash. “More and more large trucks are using this road to the extreme danger of motorists and also wear and tear to roads and bridge.”
While not a regular occurrence, frequent travelers have reported several close calls in recent months as oversized vehicles continue to make their way into Lamorinda via Canyon’s twisting roads despite an effort to remove the route from popular driving apps.
A few truck drivers have “hung up” in the hairpin turns, blocking traffic and requiring heavy-duty tow vehicles – which also have to navigate the narrow roads – to winch them out.
Big Rig operators admit the route looks surprisingly easy online – and is a tempting alternative when traffic on Highway 24 begins to lock up.
“We are always looking for a better, faster way,” one big-rig operator confessed recently, declining to say if he had used Canyon as a shortcut. “Time is money for us.”