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Hearst Castle suddenly loses bus service provider

Posted at 11:03 PM, Dec 18, 2018
and last updated 2018-12-19 02:31:19-05

Hearst Castle is looking for a new bus provider after Silverado Bus Company filed for bankruptcy and abruptly stopped its service.

The buses take hundreds of tourists from the Visitor Center up the windy road to the castle itself.

State Parks officials say they received notice just last Wednesday that Silverado was pulling out.

State Parks spokesman Dan Falat says they froze the ability to make any new reservations to avoid over-booking on Saturday.

By Sunday, the tourist hotspot was operating using buses about half the size through an emergency, temporary contact with a Southern California company.

Many visitors are taking the hiccup in stride.

“No problems, I had no idea that they had issues. He [the bus driver] had mentioned they had smaller buses, so the group would be going in two different busses,” said Susan Kelley, who was visiting from Bradbury.

“I mean, we would’ve walked up if we had to, but it’s better that we got a ride,” joked Michael Durkton.

Falat says they’re still re-configuring their capacity levels with the change in transportation.

California State Parks has a contract with the current bus company for six months, but they may be able to drop out of the contract sooner if they find something more suitable. Falat says the bus drivers are still employed and working.