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California State Route 32

After completing the Feather River Highway on CA 70 and seeing the condition of Lake Oroville I headed up Chico to stay the night.  I had taken CA 36 a couple years prior to Lassen Volcanic National Park and decided that I would try CA 32 instead.



Interestingly when I was driving into Chico I noticed CA 99 is still signed on Park Avenue for some reason.


Oddly the current CA 99 bypass of Chico was apparently completed in 1967 which was the year that US 99E became CA 99.  I thought that the CA 99 shield might be a fluke business route but there was another reassurance shield near the junction with CA 32 I didn't capture.  The 1966 State Highway Map shows a bypass of Chico being built as US 99E and the 1967 State Highway Map shows it complete.

1966 State Highway Map

1967 State Highway Map

CA 32 itself is a 72 mile state highway from I-5 east to CA 36/89 in the Sierras.  I was essentially starting out CA 32 about one third of the way through the route at CA 99 but there is a junction with CA 45 west of Chico in Hamilton City in Glenn County.  CA 32 was one of the original signed state highways and would have ended at US 99W in Orland at 6th street originally which can be seen on the 1938 State Highway Map.

1938 State Highway Map

CA 99 east of Park Avenue CA 32 is on a pair of one-way streets with eastbound traffic on 9th Street and westbound on 8th Street.  East of CA 99 the alignment of CA 32 is on Deer Creek Highway very fast and is a rare two-lane 65 MPH zone up to about 2,400 feet above sea level in Forest Ranch.






Interestingly east of US 99E it appeared CA 32 was once on Humboldt Road east out of Chico to the big climb into the Sierras.  It also appears CA 32 might have been on 2nd Street west of US 99E whereas the modern alignment continues as 9th and 8th streets to Walnut Street.  The original alignments can be observed on the 1935 Butte County Map from the California Division of Highways.

1935 Butte County Highway Map

North of Forest Ranch CA 32 briefly enters Tehama County near Lomo before a quick swing back through Butte County.  CA 32 reenters Tehama County one more time and eventually picks up the course of Deer Creek which takes it to the north terminus at CA 36/89.  Given it was sunrise my highway album didn't exactly turn out how I like but the route appears to be a mix of original alignments along with the occasional modern grade used for passing zones.













From the terminus of CA 32 I turned left in a westbound direction towards CA 36/89 which is part of the Volcanic Legacy Scenic Byway towards Lassen Volcanic National Park. 









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