Community rallies to continue improving safety for bicyclists and motorists at Mount Diablo State Park | Cal Parks

20 June 2023

Mount Diablo, Calif. — More safety improvements are coming to Mount Diablo State Park. California State Parks, the California State Parks Foundation, and Mount Diablo Cyclist are partnering to build phase two of bike safety turnouts inside the park. These turnouts allow bicyclists, who move at slower speeds as they pedal uphill, to pull out of the main traffic lane into their own lane so that vehicles can pass safely.  

With more than a decade of advocacy and determination to prevent collisions, local bicyclist Alan Kalinled an effort that successfully advocated for the State of California to dedicate funds for California State Parks to install the initial bike turnouts on Mount Diablo.  

“By creating dedicated space for bicyclists pedaling uphill, these bike turnouts help prevent drivers from making unsafe passes that result in collisions, saving countless lives,” said Mark Dedon from Mount Diablo Cyclist. In recognition of his leadership, Kalin was recently inducted into the California Outdoors Hall of Fame.

With the recent completion of 30 bike turnouts in 2022, there are now 45 bike turnouts at Mount Diablo State Park. To complete the safety plan, 43 more bike turnouts are needed. For phase two, the partners will complete as many bike turnouts as possible depending on the funds raised, with an initial gift made from the estate of Joe Shami and proceeds from the 2022 Mt. Diablo Challenge Memorial Ride

Known by locals as “The Legend of Mount Diablo,” Joe’s passion for Mount Diablo State Park and cycling was exemplified by over a decade of weekly trips up the mountain well into his 80s.  

“Tragically, Joe was struck and killed by a vehicle while riding his bicycle in Lafayette,” said Randy Widera from California State Parks Foundation. “Although he is not with us today, Joe left a special gift in his will of $123,000 to California State Parks Foundation to fund additional Bike Turnouts on Mount Diablo.” 

The deadline to raise additional funds is Oct. 30, 2023.  

“State Parks is very appreciative of Joe's gift and the community's collaboration to implement these critical safety measures,” said Clint Elshotz, Acting District Superintendent of Diablo Range District. “With each bike turnout built, the mountain becomes safer.” 

From 2010 to 2014, this route produced an average of 23 collisions per year, according to California State Parks. After the first turnouts were created, collisions dropped to three accidents in two years, and road rage significantly diminished. 

Community members and park visitors are encouraged to support and donate to this effort by visiting or by contacting Randy Widera, Directory of Philanthropy, California State Parks Foundation.

About Mount Diablo State Park

Located in the San Francisco Bay Area to the east of Walnut Creek, people have been drawn for generations to Mount Diablo for its spectacular views from the summit which extend over 100 miles in all directions on a clear day. Visitors have been attracted by the complex geology that has created amazing rock formations such as the “wind caves” at Rock City, and by the mountain’s variety of habitats which are home to over 600 species of plants and an amazing array of wildlife such as butterflies, bats and birds of prey, tarantulas, bobcats, lizards, snakes and deer. 

In 2021 Mount Diablo celebrated its 100th year as a State Park. Though 100 years is a long history as a park, the importance of Mount Diablo was recognized long before that. For thousands of years Native Americans were the caretakers of this land. Many groups considered and treated the mountain as a sacred place and continue to do so today. 

Since becoming a park in 1921, Mount Diablo has been protected as a natural area, and over the past 100 years the park has grown from only a few hundred acres to over 20,000 acres. Today it is a destination for those who would like to view wildlife and wildflowers, experience beautiful views, hike, camp, picnic, run, cycle, climb, ride horses, or gaze at the stars.


Mount Diablo Cyclists mission is to improve the safety for Cyclists, Motorists, and Pedestrians on the Roads of Mount Diablo.