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Signed County Route J21

I thought it might be interesting to explore some previous journeys this year before I started writing road blogs.  This particular trip was back in January of this year as the Sierras were getting pounded by some of the heaviest winter weather California has seen in a long time.  I was looking for an interesting route to take which brought me back to a route my GPS always seemed to be pushing to get off of CA 245; Signed County Route J21.  J21 is an 18 mile Signed County Route created  in 1968 entirely within Tulare County.  J21 runs entirely on Dry Creek Road and has junctions at CA 216 to the south in addition to CA 245 to the north.  Much like almost all Signed County Routes in Tulare County, J21 is in fact now unsigned.  I began my trip on J21 northward from CA 216 under a malaise of low hanging mountain fog, the guide sign showed Badger to only 19 miles to the north.


North from CA 216 the road way on J21 is initially very good but quickly narrow in places before narrowing for good on a very old small creek bridge.









As J21 begins to climb the Sierra Foothills it essentially becomes a single lane road hanging above Dry Creek.  I actually had my only encounter with another vehicle on J21 in the one-lane section but luckily the sight lines are generally excellent. 








As J21 continues to climb it widens back out but doesn't get a center stripe.  There is one major hairpin turn on the uphill northbound climb.







At about 2,500 feet above sea the clouds started to lift.  There is a somewhat major junction on J21 at Mountain 453/Stagecoach Road which continues to Hartland.


Continuing to climb I could spy what I believe was Big Baldy to the east in Sequoia National Park.  It was actually nice to see the sun given the rains and Tule Fog in San Joaquin Valley largely had kept it from coming out for several weeks.  J21 ends at CA 245 a mile south of the ghost town Badger.  I ended up taking CA 245 back south to Boyd Drive, but that's another story for another blog.







Comments

Sammy's Bubbe said…
Thank you for posting this trip. We are considering driving this road N to S at the end of this month and it is good to know what we are getting into. It looks paved all the way, and very little traffic likely. We’ll probably take it!
Challenger Tom said…
J21 was in about the same shape when I drove it last year. The one lane part is plenty wide but is otherwise just roughly surfaced. Neither J21 or California State Route 245 have much in the way of traffic.

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