Spring season is Adventure Season in Big Bear Lake! This Southern California mountain destination is your outdoor recreation haven with miles of wooded trails for hiking, mountain biking, and off-roading, and an expansive alpine lake with all the kayaking, fishing, and waterskiing you can dream about. This 'island in the sky' can be a crazy combination of sunny mornings with the sound of birds singing in the pines and wild rainstorms that create seasonal streams rushing through rocky creek beds, all while offering some of the grandest scenery and nighttime star gazing you could ask for, so...what are you waiting for?

Spring Fishing in Big Bear

Pack your tackle box and head to the shore - or rent a comfy pontoon - for a weekend of fishing for rainbow trout, large and smallmouth bass, crappie, carp and more. Our six marinas open April 1 and offer pontoon and small fishing boat rentals. If you have your own vessel, you can purchase a lake permit and launch from one of two public launch ramps on the North Shore. Visit the Big Bear Municipal Water District website for permit and launching info. This time of year, the rainbow trout are biting big-time and you can be one of the first to enjoy the start of fishing season.

For the best fishing gear in town, stop into Big Bear Sporting Goods for rods, reels, lures and bait. Knowledgeable staff can also offer advice on fishing tactics for weather and species. You can also get a valid fishing license before you go. For even more expert advice, book a fishing charter.

Spring Hiking in Big Bear

No matter your fitness level or hiking experience, Big Bear's expansive trail system offers a perfect route for every visitor. For an easy jaunt, stroll along the popular (and paved) Alpine Pedal Path with its breathtaking scenery and access points to the shoreline. Along this route you'll find designated picnic areas to stop for a quick bite. Just be sure to dispose of all trash waste in proper bins or take it back home with you.

Looking for a challenge? Try the Cougar Crest trail on the North Shore. This route has a steep elevation gain and connects to the famed Pacific Crest Trail and the ultra challenging Bertha Peak climb. On the South Shore, the Skyline Trail offers a lengthy 13 mile trek through changing landscapes. Wherever you roam, be sure to stick to designated trails to preserve the landscape and avoid leaving any trash along the way.

Wildflowers and Nature

In April, the historic and one-of-a-kind Pebble Plains come into bloom at the Baldwin Lake Ecological Reserve. Made possible by the climate formed after Big Bear's Ice Age history, these itty bitty blooms are just a few millimeters high but impress with their range of color and variety. This rare habitat is only found in Big where else in the world! The Reserve offers tours of the Pebble Plains as well as interesting facts. You can expect to see the biggest bloom in mid-May.

At higher elevations, like Bluff Lake Reserve, you’ll spot wild Columbine, Yarrow and Indian Paintbrush from late May through July. Many of Big Bear's more lush trail routes will also boast some impressive Lupine meadows. So keep your eyes peeled and your camera ready!

Off-Roading in Big Bear

Big Bear features some of the best off-road trails for your 4X4 vehicle, ATV, and dirt bikes. Before heading out, study the area you're looking to ride in and become familiar with the trails and where they lead and connect to. The San Bernardino National Forest site has a complete list of OHV road riding and OHV trail riding. Please stick to the roads and trails to avoid igniting unintentional wildfires and abide by all trail use regulations.

You can also stop into the Big Bear Lake Visitor Center to pick up FREE off-roading maps to keep with you. Ask our expert staff about recommendations for your ability level or interests.

Year-Round Tours

There are so many ways to discover Big Bear Lake - on horseback, on four wheels, in the air, and on the water. Each of these guided tours offers a unique peek into the history of Big Bear Lake, the changing landscapes and microclimates, and wildlife and foliage. With the exception of lake tours, each of Big Bear's touring companies offer guided treks year-round. Find your method and take on Big Bear in any season!

High-Altitude Training

At over 6700’ feet, Big Bear Lake is perfect for high altitude fitness and serves as a training ground for many professional and Olympic level athletes. Big Bear Lake plays host to numerous athletic events throughout the year including trail runs, mountain bike races, road rides, and more.

You'll find CrossFit boxes, yoga studios, and traditional gyms - like the Fitness Source and Big Bear Pilates - to help keep you fighting fit during your visit. Or create your own workout and hit the many trails throughout the valley.