Cougar Crest Trail

MODERATE 314 reviews

Cougar Crest Trail is a 5.2 mile moderately trafficked out and back trail located near Big Bear City, California that features beautiful wild flowers and is rated as moderate. The trail offers a number of activity options and is best used from March until November. Dogs are also able to use this trail but must be kept on leash.

DISTANCE
5.2 miles
ELEVATION GAIN
856 feet
ROUTE TYPE
Out & Back

dogs on leash

backpacking

birding

hiking

nature trips

snowshoeing

trail running

walking

forest

views

wild flowers

wildlife

rocky

Directions from Big Bear Lake, CA: From the Discovery Center on the northeast shore of Big Bear Lake the trailhead is located 0.6-mile to the west on Highway 38. Or you can park for free until 6 PM at the Discovery Center and walk the 0.6-mile west on Highway 38 to the Cougar Crest Trail.

1 day ago

Use this trail to go on Pacific coast trail

11 days ago

Great trail. easy 5 mile round trip hike with nice views of the lake.

hiking
21 days ago

This was a great last minute hike choice. Knowing that there was a gorgeous view of Big Bear Lake waiting for us at the top made it all worth it. It’s a good moderate hike, lots of lizards and birds, many friendly fellow hikers, several bench seats at view look outs to take a break on if needed. Take water and some snacks

1 month ago

Loved this hike, beautiful views, friendly people, and great exercise! I was glad I brought my walking stick as it was quite rocky in places.

hiking
1 month ago

First time hiking and loved it. Beautiful views.. Rocky but durable. Will do it again. And I’m 63.. Feel so proud

hiking
2 months ago

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.

hiking
3 months ago

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

3 months ago

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.

3 months ago

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.

4 months ago

Great hike

hiking
5 months ago

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

hiking
5 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
5 months ago

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

hiking
5 months ago

Glad I left a little earlier in the morning for this as it was a nice peaceful hike up to the PCT. coming back down though was extremely busy - tons of traffic. Really beautiful views of Big Bear Lake and the mountains behind the ridge you crest. Nice old growth pines of different varieties.

6 months ago

Beautiful trail with amazing views!

6 months ago

Great views at the top and wooded area as you travel making it a peaceful hike.

6 months ago

Continue the hike up to Bertha peak for the best views of bear lake. Moderate hike

6 months ago

Great trail up to Pacific Crest Trail. Stopping point with great views of the mountains and Big Bear Lake. I took my time set up ENO and stayed a while before returning.

hiking
7 months ago

A fun partially scenic trail.

8 months ago

Beautiful view points!

hiking
8 months ago

Beautiful day today, low 60s, comfortable in shorts & T-shirt. Made it to Pacific Crest Trail sign. Nice benches under shade tree there. Great view of the lake. Great spot for our picnic lunch.

hiking
8 months ago

Great hike! once you get to the main junction at the top you can keep going up to Bertha Peak but stick to the right. Overall a great hike with amazing views of Big Bear Lake.

8 months ago

Great hike. Awesome views of the lake. Can take the trail to meet up with the PCT. Loved this hike

hiking
9 months ago

This was one of my favorite hikes! So scenic, not too much foot traffic. Challenging but not too strenuous. The path was easy to follow too. Highly recommend!

hiking
9 months ago

Beautiful views all along this trail. It is pretty rocky so watch your footing. Must have an adventure pass when parking at the trail head or they will ticket you.

hiking
9 months ago

We hiked on Labor Day weekend so the trail had quite a few other hikers. It will be nice to go back and see what the traffic is like on the trail on a regular weekend. The views are beautiful! The trail is rocky so be mindful of your footing

hiking
9 months ago

Great hike. Did it on 8/30/17. It was 68 degrees at the trail head at 2:30. It was 115 in San Bernardino at 3:30. The mileage/elevation is off on many sites. The trail head says it is 2 miles to the PCT from the parking lot. It is 2.4 to 2.5 miles. It is another 1.2 to Bertha's Peak. Total elevation gain from the parking lot to Bertha's peak is about 1,350 feet.

9 months ago

fairly easy, with great views of the lake

9 months ago

Fairly easy hike with rewarding views even if you don't get all the way to the end. Connects to PCT which you can then take as long as you want

10 months ago

Nice steady climb with many small shade rest spots.
Even the 5 year old made it easily.
Nice views of the lake.

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