The latest in the Bay Area's traffic woes centers on northbound traffic across the Golden Gate Bridge, where commuters during the week after Christmas got stuck in hour-long snarls all caused by tourists trying to get into the tiny parking lot for the vista point on the Marin side. As Matier & Ross report in the Chronicle, those problems prompted bridge district officials to consider closing the parking lot altogether during peak hours over the holiday, which is something they've done during high traffic times in the past. But CalTrans and the CHP weren't having it.

They told bridge officials they couldn't just block off that exit without providing motorists with advance notice, since that vista point is an official state rest area.

Says one CHP lieutenant, "It’s a complicated problem, and in my opinion there’s not a simple fix." He points out that closing one vista point will just mean greater traffic trying to park at the other vista on the southern end of the bridge in SF, or it will just mean more people exiting at the next exit on the north side at the Alexander Avenue off-ramp, and creating gridlock on the narrow roads into the Marin Headlands or down to Fort Baker and Cavallo Point.

This all may result in some new shuttle buses that shuttle tourists from the Presidio, where there is more parking, to Marin on busy holidays. Or it may ultimately result in some longer term infrastructure improvements and more parking on the north side — though, logistically that could be tough, because: cliffs.

All agencies involved, including the bridge authority, CHP, Caltrans, Presidio Park Police, and the National Park Service will be getting together to hash this out and come up with a solution. But in the meantime, Marin-bound commuters will be dealing with some long-ass commutes around holiday and peak-vacation seasons.

Previously: As Bay Area Traffic Congestion Hits All-Time High, Here's A Ranking Of The Worst Commutes