Biking in Big Bear
The whir of the gears, the breeze in your hair, the pumping of your heart: biking is truly one of life’s most basic pleasures. And in Big Bear no matter your skill level there’s a path for you. Expert mountain bikers take advantage of the high altitude and thin air to train. The annual 24 hours of Big Bear Bike Race puts local teams and challengers to the test. The Big Bear Discovery Center is a great place to get information, and a lot of the rides start there.
If you want to make a day of it, but you’re not ready to power up steep mountains try the LAKE CIRCUIT, a mostly gentle 18 mile ride through the Big Bear lake district, south shore, Boulder Bay to Fawnskin and finally on well tended bike path to North Shore.
Easier still, is the ALPINE PEDAL PATH, a short all asphalt run that’s great for bikers, skaters, joggers, wheel chairs and even strollers. The whole loop starts at the Stanfield Cutoff and ends at the Discovery Center.
For a little more challenge, load your bike onto the Snow Summit Scenic Sky Chair take it to the top, then whiz down to Grandview point junction. Stop there or continue on and pedal another 2.5 miles to the GRANDVIEW LOOP BIKE TRAIL for incredible views with little effort. The loop ends up back at Snow Summit.
The GROUT BAY BIKE TRAIL is slightly more challenging, but a good intermediate trip only 13 miles long. It winds from the Fawnskin fire station up to 3N14, around Hanna Flat campground then rises and falls on the way back to Fawnskin.
Or get your aerobic on with THE VAN DUSEN CANYON route. It starts out relatively flat as it gently climbs to and through Holcom Valley, but a little after three miles you’ll encounter very rough, very challenging -- and fun -- terrain.
Family fun on the easy bike routes
The JOHN BULL LOOP BIKE TRAIL is almost 15 miles and best for intermediate riders. Starting at the base of Van Dusen Canyon, it takes you gently up to Holcomb Valley, but then becoming steep, rutted and sandy. Follow this loop will to return you to your car.
The popular COUGAR CREST TRAIL is moderate to difficult as well.
You will need an Adventure Pass to park in the Trailhead parking area just west of the Discovery center on highway 38. Beautiful natural views lead to a gentle then steeper climb until you reach the junction of the world famous Pacific Crest Trail. From there you could conceivably jump off your bike and keep hiking 2650 miles north to Canada. Maybe another day!