At about 3:30 p.m., police responded to the Scotts Valley Junction shopping center, where two California Highway Patrol officers had already detained two men involved in the alleged altercation.
Officers determined that the struggle was spawned from a road rage incident on southbound state Highway 17 near Vine Hill Road.
Both vehicles exited the highway and pulled into the shopping center on Scotts Valley Drive, where one driver apparently attacked the other with a 2-foot long machete, police said.
Cheyenne Young, 36, was arrested on suspicion of assault with a deadly weapon.
The victim, who sustained minor cuts to a finger and leg, was able to defend himself until CHP officers subdued the subject, police said.