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State Shield

State Route 38

Click here for a key to the symbols used. An explanation of acronyms may be found at the bottom of the page.

Routing Routing

  1. Rte 38 Seg 1From Route 10 near Redlands to Route 18 near Baldwin Lake via Barton Flats.

    Post 1964 Signage History Post 1964 Signage History

    This segment remains as defined in 1963.

    Pre 1964 Signage History Pre 1964 Signage History

    Route 38 was not included in the set of state signed routes initially defined in 1934. It was signed as Route 38 sometime after 1934, and was LRN 190, defined in 1933.

    Status Status

    Thurman Flats (~ SBD R10.304) to Glass Road (~ SBD 26.522)

    In October 2020, it was reported that Caltrans has initiated a $3.5 million director’s order to begin an emergency project to repair damages to Route 38 as the result of El Dorado wildfire. The project limits are from Thurman Flats to Glass Road. The project has been awarded to Riverside Construction Company, Inc. and started on Friday, Oct. 2, 2020. The work will stabilize slopes, remove debris and hazardous/burned trees, excavate and clear culverts and inlet basins (post-fire debris flow basins), replace debris racks and include rock slope scaling. The schedule is 7 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Friday, and it will require traffic control until the project is complete. The project is expected to be complete by late spring 2021, contingent on weather and any further damage to the facility.
    (Source: Highland Community News, 10/8/2020)

    Naming Naming

    USFS Firefighter WithhamThe portion of Route 38 between the Mill Creek Bridge #54-0346 (SBD 9.601) and the Mt. Home Creek Bridge #54-1046 (SBD R12.279) near the community of Mentone in the County of San Bernardino as the United States Forest Service Firefighter Brent Michael Witham Memorial Highway. It was named in memory of United States Forest Service Firefighter Brent Michael Witham, who lost his life in the line of duty when he was struck and killed by a falling tree on Wednesday, August 2, 2017, while working on the Lolo Peak Fire in western Montana. Brent Michael Witham was born in July 1988, in Redlands, California. He was a member of the Vista Grande Hotshot crew based in the San Bernardino National Forest of California. Hotshot crews are firefighters trained specifically for wildfire suppression. Brent loved the challenges of being part of this elite group of firefighters, and looked forward to going to work every day and worked hard to be a good role model, leader, and firefighter. Brent was a member of one of 113 hotshot crews in the United States tasked with the serious job of either hiking or being airdropped to remote areas of the wilderness to fight fires, usually with just the equipment they can carry. Brent began his firefighting career in 2011 as a member of the Tahquitz Handcrew based in Riverside, California, and was assigned to Station 56 near Mountain Center, California, in the San Jacinto Mountains in 2013. At the time of his passing, Brent had served six years as a hardworking professional who was eager to learn and be the best that he could be, according to Jody Noiron, San Bernardino National Forest Supervisor. Named by Senate Concurrent Resolution 32 (SCR 32), Resolution Chapter 138, 8/28/19)
    (Image source: Highland News)

    Jeremiah MacKayThe portion of Route 38 between PM SBD 24.00 to PM SBD 29.00, inclusive, in San Bernardino County is officially named the "Detective Jeremiah MacKay Memorial Highway." It was named on 09/27/13 by ACR 68, Res. Chapter 142, Statutes of 2013. It was named in memory of Detective Jeremiah MacKay. MacKay was born in June 1977 in San Bernardino. Mr. MacKay grew up with his younger sister in Lake Arrowhead, where he developed a passion for mountain recreation. At the age of four he climbed the highest peak in southern California, 11,503-foot Mount San Gorgonio. Mr. MacKay attended Calvary Chapel Christian School in Twin Peaks, and Mary P. Jenck Intermediate School and Rim of the World High School, both in Lake Arrowhead. Throughout his adolescence, Mr. MacKay enjoyed being part of a youth group at Church of the Woods in Lake Arrowhead, and loved participating in sports, including football, tennis, and skiing. Mr. MacKay continued to spend time in the mountains as a young man, working as a ski and snowboard instructor at the Snow Valley Ski Resort in Running Springs, and as lake patrol for the Arrowhead Lake Association in Lake Arrowhead. Mr. MacKay began his career in public service when he joined the San Bernardino County Sheriff’s Department as a member of Academy Class 131. He graduated from the program and became a Deputy Sheriff on June 4, 1998, his 21st birthday. As a deputy, Mr. MacKay was assigned to the Central Detention Center, Central Station, and Sheriff Training Facility, all in San Bernardino, and Twin Peaks station, in Twin Peaks. He was promoted to the rank of detective and served in that capacity at stations in Twin Peaks, Big Bear, and Yucaipa, with the radio call sign of 14.D.2. As part of the San Bernardino County Sheriff’s Department, Detective MacKay earned five California Highway Patrol 10851 Awards and three Commander’s Awards. Detective MacKay was chosen to be a member of the San Bernardino County Sheriff’s Department Honor Guard, and lived by the three cardinal principles of the Sheriff’s Department: honor, pride, and tradition. Detective MacKay married in November 2011. Detective MacKay took pride in his Scottish heritage and enjoyed playing the bagpipes. He was a member of the Inland Empire Emerald Society for six years, and ultimately became the organization’s sergeant at arms. On February 12, 2013, at the age of 35, Detective MacKay was shot and killed by Christopher Dorner during the manhunt for the rogue ex-Los Angeles Police Department officer. To honor Detective MacKay’s memory, the 14.D.2 Prayer Project has been established to encourage prayer for the safety of first responders.
    (Image sources: ABC7; Officer Down Memorial Page)

    Freeway Freeway

    [SHC 253.3] Entire portion. Added to the Freeway and Expressway system in 1959.

  2. Rte 38 Seg 2From Route 18 near Baldwin Lake along the north side of Big Bear Lake to Route 18 near the west end of Big Bear Lake.

    Post 1964 Signage History Post 1964 Signage History

    This segment remains as defined in 1963.

    Note that a big numbering switch also occured in 1964. Prior to 1964, Route 18 ran N from San Bernardino. At Running Springs, it joined with Route 30 (now Route 330) up from Highland, and continued cosigned Route 18/Route 30 to the W end of Big Bear Lake. At this point, Route 30 ran along the S edge of the lake, and Route 18 ran along the N end. When the new definitions went into place, Route 18 was rerouted to the S side of Big Bear Lake (replacing what had been signed as Route 30). The cosigning that existed between the W end of Big Bear Lake and the Route 30 (now Route 330)/Route 18 junction was eliminated, and the route was just signed as Route 18. The old Route 18 routing on the N side of the lake was signed as Route 38.

    Pre 1964 Signage History Pre 1964 Signage History

    This was originally part of Route 18 (from the west end of Big Bear Lake to Big Bear City), and was LRN 43. It was resigned as Route 38 in 1964.

    Naming Naming

    Lt. Jared M. Landaker Memorial HighwayThe portion of Route 38 between PM SBD 49.530 and SBD 59.396 in San Bernardino County is named the "Lieutenant Jared M. Landaker Memorial Highway" This segment was named in memory of USMC Lieutenant Jared M. Landaker, who made the ultimate sacrifice for his country when, on February 7, 2007, he gave his life while serving in Iraq in the United States Marine Corps. Lieutenant Landaker was born in Madera, California, on May 3, 1981. Due to a possible complication at Lieutenant Landaker's birth, doctors warned his parents that their child might be mentally challenged. The doctors encouraged surgery, an option that Joe and Laura Landaker refused. Although smaller in size than most boys his age, Lieutenant Landaker proved the doctors wrong by excelling in both academics and sports. As a young man, Lieutenant Landaker enjoyed skiing, snowboarding, and playing baseball and football. While attending Big Bear High School, Lieutenant Landaker played varsity baseball, served as the quarterback on the varsity football team, was an all-CIF defensive back, and was inducted into the player hall of fame. The head football coach at Big Bear High School, Dave Griffith, considered Lieutenant Landaker not only a standout football player but also a standout person and a role model to kids. Joe Bradley, a physics teacher and baseball coach at Big Bear High School, also held Lieutenant Landaker in high regard, stating that he had never coached a kid with more heart or courage. In homage to Lieutenant Landaker's athletic legacy at Big Bear High School, his jersey, number 15, was recently retired and an award is to be made in his honor. After graduating from high school, Lieutenant Landaker studied physics at the University of La Verne. Following the events of September 11, 2001, Lieutenant Landaker felt the need to do his part and decided to join the United States Marine Corps. He proceeded to attend Officer Candidate School, The Basic School, and flight school. Ranking in the top 5% during flight training, he was awarded the privilege of selecting an aircraft. Desiring to be a part of the community, he chose the CH-46 Sea Knight helicopter, an aircraft involving some of the most noble assignments in the military. Within just seven months, Lieutenant Landaker achieved the status of Helicopter Aircraft Commander, a status that typically takes at least one year to achieve. Lieutenant Landaker received a commission as second lieutenant on September 7, 2003, followed by a commission of first lieutenant on September 7, 2005. He served as a first lieutenant with the Marine Medium Helicopter Squadron 364, nicknamed "the Purple Foxes." As a medevac pilot, he airlifted wounded marines and citizens out of dangerous combat zones in Anbar province in Iraq. On February 7, 2007, just one week before his scheduled return home, Lieutenant Landaker gave his life while flying a CH-46 Sea Knight helicopter that was shot down over Anbar province. In recognition of his service in the military, Lieutenant Landaker received a purple heart, a National Defense Service Medal, an Iraqi Campaign Medal, a Global War on Terrorism Service Medal, a Sea Service Deployment Ribbon, and a Navy and Marine Corps Achievement Medal. Named by Assembly Concurrent Resolution (ACR) 59, Resolution Chapter 115, on 9/10/2007.
    (Image source: Jolygram, Seven Stars Foundation)

Scenic Route Scenic Route

[SHC 263.1] Entire route.

Interregional Route Interregional Route

[SHC 164.12] Between the east urban limits of San Bernardino-Riverside and Route 18 west of Big Bear Lake.

Other WWW Links Other WWW Links

Statistics Statistics

Overall statistics for Route 38:

Pre-1964 Legislative Route Pre-1964 Legislative Route

The route that would become LRN 38 was first defined in 1911 by Chapter 158 which called for "...a state highway from a point on the Lake Tahoe state wagon road, at or near Myers Station... thence past Tallac, Emerald Bay, to McKinney's in Placer County....".

In 1915, Chapter 203 effectively extended the route by calling for a state highway along "...the wagon road extending along the W side of Lake Tahoe, from McKinney's in El Dorado Cty to Tahoe City, thence along the Truckee River to Truckee, and thence in a W-ly direction to Donner Lake in Nevada Cty, connecting with the present state highway from Emigrant Gap".

In 1919, Chapter 66 called for the state highway system to include “A certain highway in Nevada and Sierra counties, running as follows: From a point in the town of Truckee where the present state highway branches at the subway under the Southern Pacific tracks going toward Lake Tahoe, continuing through the town of Truckee, crossing Prosser Creek and over what is known as the "Dog Valley Grade" as far as the state line about 1 mi NW of Verdi, Nevada...”

The 1919 Third Highway Bonds also provided funding for the extension from Tahoe City to Truckee.

In 1923, Chapter 100 amended the 1919 definition as follows: “A certain highway in Nevada and Sierra counties, running substantially describedas follows: From a point in the town of Truckee where the present state highway branches at the subway under the Southern Pacific tracks going toward Lake Tahoe, continuing through the town of Truckee, crossing Prosser Creek and over what is known as the "Dog Valley Grade" as far as the state line about 1 mi NW of Verdi, Nevada..." and by the most practicable route to the Nevada State Line at or near Verdi, Nevada

By 1935, the route was codified into the highway code as:

[LRN 11] near Meyer's Station to the Nevada State Line near Verdi, Nevada, via Tallac, Emerald Bay, McKinney's, Tahoe City, the Truckee River, Truckee, and Truckee River Canyon.

This was primary state highway from Truckee to the Nevada State Line.

In 1939, Chapter 473 changed "Meyer's Station" to "May's Junction". No further changes in the route were made until the 1963 renumbering.

This route was signed as follows:

  1. Route 89 between Tahoe Valley (junction with US 50, LRN 11) and Truckee (junction with US 40, LRN 37 to the W, now I-80).
  2. US 40 (present-day I-80) between Truckee and the Nevada state line.

Acronyms and Explanations:

Back Arrow Route 37 Forward Arrow Route 39

© 1996-2020 Daniel P. Faigin.
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