Historic Point Reyes lighthouse reopens after makeover

California Connection
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 In this July 5, 2003, file photo, Park ranger Cesar Martinez walks down the steps of the lighthouse along the Point Reyes National Shore in Point Reyes, Calif. (AP Photo/Marcio Jose Sanchez, File)

POINT REYES NATIONAL SEASHORE, Calif. (AP) — A historic lighthouse along the Northern California coast has reopened to the public after 13 months and a $5.7 million restoration to its former splendor.

Point Reyes National Seashore park officials say the 149-year-old lighthouse that once guided ships into foggy San Francisco Bay reopened Friday.

The restoration included disassembling 1,032 crystal pieces from the original Fresnel lens, cleaning them and putting them back together. It employed nearly 200 workers who battled punishing weather and maneuver on a steep cliffside.

The Marin Independent Journal reports that scaffolding around the lighthouse was ripped away after 80 mph winds tore through.

The lighthouse built in 1870 hasn’t guided navigators since 1975, when the U.S. Coast Guard installed an automated light next to the tower.

The lighthouse receives about 400,000 visitors annually.

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