Explore Big Bear - view hand-curated trail maps and driving directions as well as detailed reviews and photos from hikers, campers and nature lovers like you.

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Did this hike with my kids after school. It was a great little hike for them. Plan on going back soon.

hiking
15 days ago

Amazing first moderate hiking experience for this older lady. Going up was a little challenging because I don’t exercise enough, but my 11yo son was like a gazelle and having a great time. Regardless it was beautiful and I’m so glad we made it to up to Castle Rock. The views were glorious. Going down was obviously much easier :D. Have fun and bring water.

hiking
16 days ago

Honestly this is one of my favorite hikes around Big Bear. Went up yesterday, about 10 miles. Parked at the blocked gate at the end of Rim of the World rd for free. Beautiful views, well maintained fire lookout. Chilly and windy up top but SO worth the view! Still some snow on the trail but won’t last long.

hiking
19 days ago

It’s a b***h the first 0.40 miles with dramatic increased elevation. Once you past 0.40 it’s a steady increase with more smooth terrain, several small streams, and castle rock at the top. Much smaller “castle” + “rock” then I expected but still a great hike.

Great hike fairly easy,

Great hike with a beautiful view of the lake and the valley. Fairly easy until you to the last .8 mile before the peak (a little steep). Please do not climb the Satellite at the peak due to high radiation.

great view, totally worth it

consistent climb and well groomed. beautiful photo ops along the way. not recommended when it rains as it gets muddy fast.

beautiful hike with snow:) we didnt go all the way to the pacific crest trail sign but still did most of it. you do need an adventure pass for this when there is snow.

This was a nice stroll to the crest that overlooks the lake, going in late February was perfect weather. Plenty of dogs on this trail.

My husband and I hiked this trail after it snowed. The trail was well marked from previous hikers, otherwise it would have been difficult to navigate through with the snow covered paths. Most of the incline is at the first 1/3 of the trail but then tapers off. Once we got to the top to overlook the lake, we took the opportunity to climb on the boulders at the top to get a better view. It was absolutely stunning!! The hardest part of the hike was parking and avoiding being hit by oncoming traffic on the road! I highly recommend this trail for its surprise once you reach the top!

This is an awesome trail great all year round. Beautiful scenery of the lake. Amazing during the snow. Parking is a bit of hassle, but it’s well worth it once you find parking.

trail running
2 months ago

Took the butler peak trail. Trail running. Closed to cars. Amazing. Soft. Lil snowy. Epic views. And the tower. Just an incredible end to 5 miles up. Loved it.

hiking
2 months ago

Parking is an issue because this trail is very popular and you have to park in a turn out, which depending on the time/day you go will most likely be full. I went on a Saturday around 10 am and there were so many people hiking this trail it was a bit overwhelming. If your intention is to simply reach the view then the hike is short are relatively easy, it is fairly steep but not for long. If you are continuing the hike there are more trails to do so.
We had to wait about 15-20 minutes to get a chance to take a photo on the rock with the best view of the lake, but it was totally worth it the view is amazing and we got some pretty cool pictures.

only made it to the castle rock and climbed up it due to the sun coming down, but this is a cool trail really can't wait to get to the meadow next time.

hiking
2 months ago

Great views. Moderately challenging at the end with large incline. Overall pretty nice hike.

hiking
2 months ago

1. Parking: To park you need to pull into a turn out off the highway. There are about 6 spots or more depending on how people park. Some people also park right off the highway. You have to cross the highway to make it to the trailhead. We arrived at 9:00 am and found parking without a problem.

2. People: There are a lot of people on this hike. There are many families and people with dogs. People seem to be responsible about picking up dog poop and keeping them on leashes.

3. The trail: The trail is a bit steep in the beginning and was tough for me with my asthma. It lightens up a bit. In the beginning there are clear signs and then there are contradictory arrows making the trail difficult to follow. We ended at a dead end. We asked four separate groups where the trail went and no one knew. Everyone we saw was lost. People begin to wander off the trail which is still nice because it is scenic and there are tons of photo opportunities.

Overall it's a nice hike. You get great views and there are many boulders to climb for cool photos. It's a busy busy trail so if you are looking for a peaceful hike this is not for you. To be fair, we went on a Saturday.

Happy hiking!!!

hiking
2 months ago

Did this hike on February 3rd with my fiancé and dog. Like others, we had to hike from the road to the trailhead to start. About half of the hike was on snow, and some sections were pretty steep and required extra care and a slower pace. At 12 miles and 3k+ elevation gain topping out at 9950+, this hike pushed us to our limits. Luckily the weather was good. It would be difficult to find the trail in bad weather.

I would recommend this hike to advanced hikers who want a real challenge and are willing to spend most of the day on the hike. All in all, the hike took us about 5 hrs and 45 minutes. We took a couple breaks for snacks and water and pictures as well.

Last thing is to be careful of icy conditions during this time of year. Both my fiancé and I slipped and fell on the way down one time, and had a few other scares. Make sure you are outfitted with proper gear and bring plenty of water. Have fun!

Completed Sugarloaf Mountain Trail in 6hrs, over 12.6 mile in/out, at 3,228ft.

The dirt road was closed and I had to hike one mile to get to the trailhead. The ranger said not to hike it, but I did it anyway. I wanted to reach the peak and see the view of Mt. San Gorgonio.

Good for building and strengthen your endurance. Very hard with extreme inclines, not for beginner hikers. Advanced hikers, need a partner! Highly recommended during this time of condition (February 2018). I was the only hiker, there!

The trail conditions need to be maintained: it was covered with overgrown heavy vegetation, rocks, icy-snow, and soft snow that made it hard to located the trail. I got detoured and lost. I couldn't find my way back down because of the sun light reflected off the snow, which made it very hard to see my footprints and path: so I made my own pathway down the mountain. I got to admit, it was scary. Need a good sense of navigational skills. Must stay on the trail!

Need clamp on's (boot snow chains)! Man, I am tired! I recommend not hiking this trail until it is fixed.

I am proud of myself for doing this - it was a difficult hiked due to the trail conditions.

Great hike

Great hike

3 months ago

good hike, great views, ruined with a giant satellite at the top.

hiking
3 months ago

Quick hike, had a great time, especially taking in the view and climbing on the rocks along the trail. Early Jan, not much snow quite yet!

Real short hike with an awesome view of Big Bear Lake

hiking
3 months ago

Beautiful day Jan 6 2018, nice steady hike, highly recommend go to Bertha peak off of cougar crest!

hiking
3 months ago

Amazing hike! Great views. Nice and steady.

hiking
3 months ago

Love this trail-- a good challenge-and-reward for kiddo's, scrambling up the final rocks to get that view of the lake is a must! Went in December and no snow and caught a pretty sunset.

hiking
3 months ago

Great hike that runs into the PCT. Make sure to get a Recreation Permit if you want to park on the lot. It's $5 at the nearest 711.

hiking
3 months ago

Lots of trucks and jeeps. Be careful with traffic. Start early during summer months. Pretty view once you get to the top.

hiking
3 months ago

One of my Favorites to hike. You can never get tired of hiking this trail. Wildlife, Scenery is awesome. Go prepared.

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