Help keep our trails and parks open during COVID-19 by committing to social distancing. Some trails or park services may be closed this weekend so check with local authorities before heading out.
Learn more

Upper Bear Creek is a 18.4 mile moderately trafficked out and back trail located near Azusa, California that features a river and is rated as moderate. The trail offers a number of activity options and is accessible year-round. Dogs are also able to use this trail.

Length 18.4 mi Elevation gain 3,963 ft Route type Out & Back

Dog friendly

Backpacking

Camping

Hiking

Nature trips

Walking

Bird watching

Forest

River

Views

Wild flowers

Wildlife

Description
Waypoints (0)

From the trailhead to Upper Bear Creek Trail Camp. The trail camp is virtually non-exist.

Weather
UV Index
Daylight
Reviews (29)
Photos (238)
Recordings (18)
Completed (50)
Blake Furuike
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarGray StarGray StarThu Jul 09 2020
FishingBlowdownBugsOff trailOver grown

Somebody get me a god damn American ninja warrior metal because I was sliding down boulders like a special ops, climbing rock piles, crossing rivers every two seconds and bushwhacking. I kinda lost the trail because it is over grown and washed out so kinda go lost and followed the river. There was almost no good places to set up camp so we kept having to mob more and more u til we found open area. The first park was also a bitch because it was all uphill with no shade or water and a lot of spiders webs. Next time look out for rock piles when crossing the river because it directs u to the path and please make your own to help. It took me 3 days because it was a lot of climbing and getting lost and not much hiking. Light packs, watershoes and trekking poles are a must kinda. And if you get lost follow the river like me and you will eventually survive. Also there are lots of trout in the deeper pools I caught a couple with a small rod and power bait also if anyone has a metal if honor, a Purple Heart or American ninja warrior metal please HMU

Nick Hernandez
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarTue Jul 07 2020
HikingBugsNo shade

Awesome trail, not too bad i started around 8am and got to the campground around 11:30. I did come across some rattlers on the trail so keep an eye out, please take lots of water the first portion of the trail has minimum shade on most parts and none on most turns. Steady incline so pack appropriately if you’re backpacking. On the way down I came across a couple sitting in the sun and I asked if they were ok turns out the male wasn’t. He was dehydrated like a Motherfucker and both had little to no water supply. We Managed to get him down with out any issues under a time crunch and into the right care (took him straight to the closest fire station) I followed up with the couple and he seems to be doing fine now thank god. Overall beautiful trail, I’ll add some pictures in the mix and I did get approval from the guy to post his picture up. So, please stay hydrated and keep on ruckin’ !

Jackie Wiggins
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarSun Jun 14 2020
HikingBugs

Fun hike! Not a lot of people (less than 15 on a Sunday!). We did the hike to Smith Saddle (3 miles) and back. Trail is well maintained. Saw 3 snakes, one of them was a rattler. Lots of lizards, butterflies and buzzing insects. Shady spots and periodic wind along the way. The only downside is that you can hear the “Ricky Racers” that drive along Highway 39 for much of the hike. Maybe it is just a weekend thing. Parking lot is at mile marker 32 (about 16 miles past the Sierra Madre signal).

Christopher Farley
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarTue Jun 09 2020
HikingWashed out

This could be the best trail in the entire forest if they repaired the Smith Mountain Top side down to the Bear Creek ... I was alone so I turned back .. I didn’t want to risk a fall and be alone miles from my car .. I might go back with a shovel and some rope and try and make it safer for hikers .. The views are amazing ... there are spots you can rest in the shade to cool down .. nice breezes, views and wild flowers .. I heard a ton of Rattlesnakes but didn’t see any ... felt like going up I was in the Valley of the Rattlers .. I still recommend this trail even if you just do the first 3 miles as a 6 mile out and back .. I do hope they can make the back end safer (miles 3-4) if they did this be an amazing trail ...

Agnostic Rover
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarGray StarGray StarFri May 01 2020
HikingBugsOver grownWashed out

Trail going down from Smith saddle to the creek is in need of urgent repair at a few dangerous spots. Because of erosion, the trail is narrow and unstable with good amount of scree combined with a very steep and bare hillside.

Kyle N
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarThu Mar 26 2020
HikingBugsOver grownScramble

Amazing trail, did it last weekend. I’m an avid hiker and I’d rate this trail as difficult due to a few reasons as followed. The back side is so overgrown I damn near lost a leg. At one point I got off trail and slid down a mini rock slide and have the cuts to prove it lol (it sucked) so just be careful. I did eat a few gummies beforehand and went solo so that might have been my fault lol. Thought a damn cougar was following me too when they started to kick in lol (there was no cougar... I don't think) Anyways! When you get to the creek which is at the bottom of The Valley on the backside of the first mountain, it’s prettier than a speckled pup under a wagon with his tongue hanging out. You gotta hop some rocks but I brought sandals. Literally didn’t see a soul after going over the first saddle. Would recommend if you got some adventure in your soul and want to crank out a fat 20. I think down to the creek and back is a little over 10. Camping is available too but I got the JUICE! Good luck!

Marissa Lopez
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarGray StarGray StarWed Jan 29 2020
HikingRocky
View Marissa's Recording
Teal Helms
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarGray StarGray StarMon Jul 29 2019
BackpackingOver grownRockyWashed out

did this as an overnighter. the decent to the creek was overgrown at some parts and virtually no trail once you get down to the creek. lots of rock hopping so I don't recommend for backpackers, a day trip might be ok

Brett Clements
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarGray StarGray StarFri May 03 2019
HikingOver grown

Steep climb to the submit then a vast drop down into bear creek trail. Once you get to the creek it is gorgeous but damn near impossible to follow any kind of trail. Camp grounds are over grown. Very difficult, expect to get wet and rock hop the majority of the creek portion of the trail.

Ric Jameson Sabellon
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarMon Jan 28 2019
Backpacking

I went to camp there, and it was a lovely experience. Will go again some time in the future. :)

Leaa Short
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarMon Jan 07 2019
Hiking

Only went 3 miles in to the saddle at Smith Mtn. 1st mile is a bit steep & hovers over the road. Keep going. It's worth it. Lots of birds, a skunk, and few people. Have gone the other direction from West Fork as well. Love it!

Kevin Prendeville
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarThu Jan 03 2019

Did this hike over two days, the descent down to the river can be tricky, especially with a big pack, as much of the trail is washed out. Didn’t see anyone else for the duration. Saw some bear tracks. Over all good hike.

Vic Hanson
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarTue Oct 30 2018

One of my favorite hikes, did it roundtrip from the first West Fork parking, went up Bear Creek, past the turnoff aways, then back down to continue the trail up to the saddle, climbed Smith Mt., then on to Hwy. 39 and ran that back to my vehicle. Almost 20 miles total.

Brett Bateman
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarFri Aug 24 2018
Backpacking

This has become my go to site. Beautiful hike and over night backpacking. Every time I have gone shared the site with at most 2 more groups and sites are spaced out far enough you really don’t get overlap at all. Be aware of the trail when it turns off the main creek it can be easy to miss, you want to go up the hill before the creek splits. From the fork there is no way to miss the spot. Trail can be tricky in spots depending on the water and time of year. In the winter there can be high water and tricky crossings with rock hopping and once we had to use a fallen tree to cross in the early spring.

Spencer DeVries
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarMon Jul 23 2018
Backpacking

Great hike. No water source until about mile 5. Trail can be hard to follow at times. Lots of rock hopping. We only saw one other group of backpackers the whole time. In July the mosquitos were prevalent at night. Overall a fun overnight trip about 45 mins from a main town.

Nick Banks
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarWed Feb 21 2018
Backpacking

Fun backpacking adventure. Finding campground is difficult, we ended up setting up camp at a flat along the river. Lots of rock hopping on the way out.

Richard Gomez
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarGray StarGray StarSat Jun 20 2020
Hiking
View Richard's Recording
Paola Andrea Arteaga
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarGray StarGray StarSat Jun 13 2020
Hiking
View Paola Andrea's Recording
Paul Hernandez
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarMon Apr 20 2020
Hiking
View Paul's Recording
Justin Corneau
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarFri Apr 17 2020
Backpacking
View Justin's Recording
Showing results 1 - 20 of 29