With a small day pack strapped to his back, Scott Groves set out from his home in Pasadena to the foot of Mt. Wilson Trail in Sierra Madre. He climbed seven miles to the top of the mountain and then proceeded down Mt. Wilson Road before happening upon the closed portion of Angeles Crest Highway (SR-2).
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The former Boy Scout and U.S. Army soldier had already been hiking for five hours, and it was too far to turn back.
"It wasn't even on my radar that this was closed," Groves said as he stopped to fill his water pouch near the intersection of Angeles Crest Highway and Angeles Forest Highway. "I had read that it was clear to come up from the Palmdale side so I figured everything here was cool."
About 20 miles of the 66-mile mountain pass, from La Cañada Flintridge to Mt. Wilson Road, and 25% of Angeles National Forest remain off limits to the public as construction crews rebuild large washouts caused by winter storms. The $16.5 million in repairs, contracted out to Thousand Oaks-based Burns Pacific Construction, is expected to be completed in November.