Spring & Fall in Big Bear

Other activities to explore are horse back riding, off-roading, mountain biking, golfing, hiking, swimming at the swim beach, zip-line tours, gun shooting range, a day at the spa, shopping in the village (there are stores that feature Thomas Kinkade and Marty Bell works of art), bowling, and dining (there are more than 100 different restaurants throughout the valley).

Holidays In Big Bear

Don't forget the youngsters in all of us, come and enjoy the animal park, Moonridge Zoo, Alpine Slides, Go carts, 18 hole miniature golf, water slides, arcades, Big Bear Museum, 2 movie-theaters in the Village that show first run movies, Performing Arts Center, Discovery Center and much, much more.

As for those still young at heart Big Bear Lake has a great Golf course and some of the best antique stores and vintage shopping in Southern California.

Spring Fishing in Big Bear Waters

Spring is a wonderful time to fish trout, just after Memorial Day there are some great places to explore. The pyschology of the season helps when you consider spawning activity cycle. Try using some of these suggestions when fishing in the spring.

Boat Tours

Big Bear QueenTake a lake tour on The Big Bear Queen and you'll learn much about Big Bear's history.  Captain Chris Bellows, a Big Bear native narrates the tour.  A romantic Sunset Cruise is also offered.  Bring food and drink if you like, and enjoy the magnificent mountain sunsets with your sweetheart.  The Big Bear Queen tour is a cozy way to see beautiful views of the pristine mountain landscape. Call 909-866-3218 to schedule the fun and informative tour, or the peaceful and serene sunset tour.

Discovery Center

Some people come to the mountains to see the wildlife. Check out the Big Bear Discovery Center for information about all things “nature” in the San Bernardino Mountains. The Discovery Center is run in co-operation with the Forest Service. Pick up hiking information, permits and books about the area.

Hiking Big Bear Trails

Hiking and backpacking are by far two of the most popular activities to engage in and around Big Bear Lake. Surrounded by national forest land, Big Bear is a great place for biking and hiking. There are many trails and paths to choose from, ranging from easy family paths that most anyone will love, to extreme trails that will challenge even the most experienced enthusiasts. Hike along the shoreline and explore the many nooks and glens surrounding the lake. For the more avid enthusiastic hiker or backpacker there are numerous trails leading high up into the surrounding San Bernardino National Forest and the San Gorgonio Wilderness. Big Bear is also host to 39 miles of the Pacific Crest Trail that spans 2650 miles from the border of Mexico to Canada's southwest border. 

If you want to rent a bicycle, or if you need parts or repairs for your own equipment, Chains Required Bike Shop is a great one-stop shop that offers both.  Reach them by phone at 909-878-3268 or stop by 41869 Big Bear Lake Blvd in Big Bear Lake.

If you want to get even more adventurous, use Google Earth to plan your own journey through the San Bernardino National Forest.  You'll find routes, trails, and recreation sites so you can plan your own personal adventure.  Exploring the National Forest is a great activity to enjoy while visiting Big Bear on a budget.

Big Bear Off-Roading

A 4x4 off-road adventure is a great way to see magnificent mountain and lake views that will inspire you to greater heights.  Be adventurous and explore remote heights that are only occasioned by a small number of visitors.  4x4 tours are an excellent way to see more of Big Bear.  Big Bear Off Road Adventures will take you on an awesome off road excursion, and they are open year round.  Call them at 909-585-1036 and plan to see more of Big Bear during your stay.

Holcomb Valley – Gold History of Big Bear

Ore CartIf you are seeking to prospect some gold, Holcomb valley is where the Gold Rush occurred that brought many a wealth seeker to Big Bear in the Gold Rush of 1860. The Big Bear Discovery Center has maps to help you explore.

Holcomb Valley is an excellent low cost way to spend an afternoon.  Explore the Gold Fever Trail and learn about the area's history.  To obtain your map, visit the Big Bear Ranger Station and Discovery Center located at 40971 North Shore Drive/Hwy 38, in Fawnskin.  You can call ahead by dialing 909-866-3437.  The map will help you find your way on this self-guided tour that takes you by landmarks such as Grasshopper Quartz Mill, Hangman's Tree, and Metzger Mine.  You'll also see the Original Gold Diggings Landmark where Bill Holcomb first found gold in the region.

Big Bears Very Own Solar Observatory

One thing you'll notice when touring Big Bear Lake is the big white solar observatory in water.  The Big Bear Solar Observatory is known to be one of the best in the world for observing solar activity.  The lake water helps to reduce convection caused by the sun heating the ground of the observatory.  An off-season visit to Big Bear is a great time to learn about Solar oscillation, Earthshine, and Space weather.  Tours are offered (although presently not available due to construction taking place).  Call the observatory at 909-866-5791 or drive by 40386 North Shore Lane in Big Bear City for more details.


 Each year, Mid September – end of October.

If you like festivals, there is Oktoberfest. Big Bear has hosted an Oktoberfest event since 1970, its gained a reputation of being the best Oktoberfest in Southern California. Starting approximately mid September thru the end of October each year. Held at the Convention Center in Big Bear Lake, located at 42900 Big Bear Blvd.  Call ahead at 909-585-300 for scheduling.  Enjoy authentic German traditions, music, beers, dancing, shopping, entertainment, a variety of contests including a Halloween Costume contest. The farewell festivities of each Oktoberfest is just as fun as the beginning, the only sad thing is that we hate to see it end! But, we can look forward to next years big shin dig! Big Bear's Oktoberfest is one of the best known on the West Coast. For all you Oktoberfest enthusiasts we have provided a link to more information about Oktoberfest, it's history and more.


A Big Bear Thanksgiving

What better way to celebrate giving thanks for all our blessings but to spend an unforgettable Thanksgiving in Big Bear. Our weather in Big Bear turns colder and many times we have gotten snow. Snow Summit and Bear Mountain Ski Resorts always make it their goal to have the slopes open for the holiday. At Gold Rush we like to extend Thanksgiving specials and discounts to our valued guests, its our way of saying, Thanks for choosing us. Whether you choose to prepare the Thanksgiving meal yourself or order it ahead of time from our local markets and bring it to the cabin to serve you'll enjoy your holiday a little more being in Gods country. The Friday after Thanksgiving, Big Bear welcomes Santa and Mrs. Claus in the Village. There is a Christmas Tree Lighting ceremony in the village where locals and tourist alike gather round the tree singing Christmas and holiday carols just before the big lighting takes place. Shortly after the lighting, the big procession of Santas arrival in the village begins and concludes with Santa welcoming all to visit him and Mrs. Claus at their cabin in the village. Following that, Santa and Mrs. Claus welcome the little guests to listen and take note of their wishes for the holiday.

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