Back in 1959, they were darned proud of the improvements to Del Dios Highway, one of the names of the road that connects I-5 and I-15 in northern San Diego County.

But today, it’s scary and curvy, just the thing for a great day trip and a chapter in my Joyrides Around San Diego.

There’s some cool history in this article from the May-June issue of California Highways and Public Works magazine, available (and thanks so much for preserving this!) on

So many tidbits in this story that I didn’t know, and I know everything.

“During the year 1916 a contract was let for the construction of the Lake Hodges Dam and a road was constructed up the river from the Del Mar District…” wrote John F. Mulgrew, Assistant County Surveyor, San Diego County.

It washed out in the winter of 1927 when Lake Hodges overflowed; it was relocated to higher ground, but not completed until 1936 because of a lack of money.

The 1959 widening went on while traffic went through. The story describes blasting the hard terrain, with two homes damaged by flying rocks and damaged utility lines. It’s a great tale.


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