Care For Big Bear

"How wonderful it is that nobody need wait a single moment before starting to improve the world." - Anne Frank

On average, Big Bear sees 3,000,000 visitors each year. There is virtually no business in Big Bear that isn’t impacted by tourism spending. For that, we thank you for your trip to our slice of paradise! While you're here, please help us Care For Big Bear by following our Best Practices and Principals and considering one of the many ways you can volunteer or donate to Preserve Our Natural Playground.

Sustainable Travel in Big Bear Lake

On Your Way

Road Etiquette

Driving the mountain can be difficult for some drivers. Be aware of safe driving speeds and if traffic accumulates behind you, please use turn-outs to let traffic safely flow smoothly. Pulling off at these turnouts for snow play in winter is not recommended. Turnouts help the flow of traffic, but too many cars parked for long periods of time becomes dangerous!

While Visit Big Bear recommends snow tubing at Big Bear Snow Play and Alpine Slide at Magic Mountain - the U.S. Forest Service does allow snow play in the San Bernardino National Forest. Please play responsibly and away from traffic and closed areas like the Bald Eagle Habitat.

Winter Driving

You must carry tire chains in your vehicle during the winter months. Additionally, you should carry a sturdy shovel and cat litter - or gravel - should you need to dig out of a berm or create additional traction on icy roads.

Plan for Winter Driving & Be Prepared

During Your Stay

Treat Our House Like Your House

One of Big Bear Lake’s charms is that most businesses, cabins and lodges are locally-owned. It’s one of the reasons why your stay means so much to the livelihood of Big Bear Lake residents. Kindly treat these spaces with the same respect you should show your own home and your neighbors’ homes. Do not leave trash on private property or allow it to blow away. We practice the seven principles of Leave No Trace, and we encourage you to do so too! Every year, thousands of broken sleds and countless pieces of trash are left behind - in the forest and along the roads - please do not be a part of this statistic.

Think About Energy & Water Usage

Turn off lights when you leave a room and try to open windows or wear additional clothing instead of adjusting the thermostat. Conserve water by taking shorter showers and avoid high water use activities. Also, help us preserve our night skies by switching off unused indoor and outdoor lights after dark. Tips for Traveling Green


Lake Ice - Please stay off lake ice! Big Bear Lake's ice is thin through the winter and not suitable for walking or playing. The risk to your life - and those of rescuers if you fall through - is not worth it. Hefty fines await those who violate this county order.

Snow Play - Sledding near and into streets is extremely dangerous as cars use roadways year-round. Do not use turnouts to park for snow play. Other travelers will need them to put chains on, to let other drivers pass, and to pull over for emergencies.

Swimming - In the summer months, swimmers must stay within 50 feet of shore. Swimming off of boats is not recommended particularly without a life vest. Every year tragic drownings occur in Big Bear Lake. Many of these victims know how to swim but are not prepared for the lake environment which includes very cold water temps, currents, and exhaustion from altitude. Stay alive, wear a life vest!

Learn more about Visitor Safety

Enjoy Nature Responsibly

Think About Your Impact

When using trails, keep to existing routes and do not create new ones. Do not leave trash on trails and pick up garbage you find along the way. Do not take rocks, plants, or other natural objects, and do not approach wildlife. When camping, stay in developed campgrounds. Also, help us preserve our dark skies by switching off unused indoor and outdoor lights after dark. Learn the 7 Principles of Leave No Trace

Think About Fire Danger

One careless match, one burning cigarette tossed out the window, or one neglected campfire can destroy the homes of humans and wildlife. Learn about the One Less Spark Campaign

Dumpster Locations

We ask that you dispose of all refuse appropriately. Dumpsters can be found at the following locations. If you find a dumpster that is full, kindly take your trash to a Clean Bear Site or dispose of it at your accommodations.

Juniper Point Picnic Area
Aspen Glen Picnic Area
Woodland Trailhead
Cougar Crest Trailhead
Alpine Pedal Path at Elementary School Crossing
East Public Boat Launch Ramp
City Public Parking Lots
The Civic Center Campus
Stanfield Cutoff

Electric Car Charging Stations

EV Charging stations are available at the Pennsylvania Parking Lot. Please be advised that public EV stations are extremely limited. It is not advised to drive electric cars to Big Bear unless you have researched if your lodging can provide a charging station. New Tesla Super Chargers now at Village Pizza. Call ahead before using.

Public Restrooms

Public restrooms are located at:

Bartlett Public Parking Lot
Pennsylvania Public Parking Lot
Knickerbocker Public Parking Lot
Civic Center Campus
Rotary Park
Boulder Bay Park
Stanfield Cutoff
Cougar Crest Trailhead
Woodland Trailhead
Aspen Glen Picnic Area
Juniper Point Picnic Area
East Public Boat Launch Ramp
Parks & Rec Locations

Addresses & Info

Volunteer & Conservation Programs

Learn how to contribute to conservation efforts and support sustainable tourism on our Volunteer page.

Travel Safe & Recreate Wisely

Winter weather conditions have finally arrived in Big Bear. We remind all drivers that carrying tire chains in their vehicle is mandatory until April 2024. We also advise you to refer to CalTrans Quickmaps to keep up with changing road conditions throughout the winter season.

Safe Winter Driving

Fresh snowfall always brings the excitement of tubing and sledding in Big Bear. Snow tubing hills like the Alpine Slide, Big Bear Snow Play, and Grizzly Rudge Tube Park are the safest areas to enjoy snow play in the valley. National Forest lands are also open for snow play, however we sure to leave any areas clear of debris like broken sleds and trash.

Safe Winter Recreation

Bald Eagle Protection - Forest Closure

Bald eagle nesting season has begun! With this exciting news comes some wildlife safety measures including partial closures of the National Forest.

Until July 31 of 2024, the following areas are closed to protect the nesting habitat of Jackie and Shadow, our resident bald eagles:

  • Gray's Peak Trailhead in Fawnskin
  • Grout Bay Picnic Area in Fawnskin
  • Meadows Edge Picnic Area along the North Shore
  • And Juniper Point Picnic Area along the Alpine Pedal Path

Follow Eagle Updates