Bear Mountain Ski Resort: Beginner Friendly and Big Runs

With 58 trails at Bear Mountain Ski Resort you should be able to find one you’ll like. From friendly beginner areas to advanced steeps, Bear Mountain has it all. Big Bear is packed with fun on every trail and you’ll be sure to leave a better rider than when you started.

Read more to learn how to get to Big Bear, where to stay nearby and which trails to ride at Big Bear.

Trails at Bear Mountain.
Trails at Bear Mountain. Photo Credit: John Murphy (Flickr CC)

Big Bear Mountain Resort: How to Get There

The four major roads to get to Big Bear are the 330, 18RS, 18LV and 38. If you are taking one of them to Big Bear, make sure you check for traffic before heading up to the resort. It can get messy in a bad storm. Here are some distances to popular areas nearby –

  • Lancaster, CA – 2 hour and 15 minutes, 105 miles
  • Los Angeles, CA – 2 hours, 100 miles
  • Riverside, CA – 1 hour and 15 minutes, 50 miles
  • San Diego, CA – 3 hours, 150 miles

The Highlights of Big Bear

Want to know what Big Bear has to offer? Most of us do before heading out. You can expect:

  • 58 Trails
  • 18 Lifts
  • More than 200 terrain park features
  • Peak elevation: 8,805 ft – Bear Mountain
  • 1,665 ft of vertical drop
View out over Big Bear
View out over Big Bear. Photo Credit: Joseph King (Flickr CC)

Lodging Near Big Bear Mountain Resort

Big Bear is worth making a weekend out of the resort. Two popular options are bear mountain ski resort hotels that are nearby and big bear mountain ski resort cabins. Let’s look at both.

Some great options for hotels near big bear include:

  • Best Western Big Bear Chateau
  • Big Bear Frontier
  • Honey Bear Lodge
  • Holiday Inn Resort: The Lodge at Big Bear Lake

While there isn’t a lot of chain hotels near Big Bear, there is a mix between local lodging and a few chain options you are probably familiar with.

If a cabin is more of your style for a ski getaway then give Pine Haven Cottages or Pine Rock Cabins a try. Both are just minutes to the ski resort. Alternatively you could look for a private cabin on Vacation rental by owner for your ski weekend.

Does Big Bear Have Night Skiing?

Bear Bear has select night skiing throughout the season. Night skiing is on Snow Summit and the resort opens up some beginner and intermediate trails to enjoy.

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Want to Take a Ski or Snowboard Lesson at Big Bear?

Booking a ski or snowboard lesson at Big Bear is simple. There is group and private options. It doesn’t matter if you are a beginner or if you want to advance your skills, the snow sports school at Bear Mountain Ski Resort can help you improve.

You need to reserve in advance online 2 days prior to your arrival if you want to secure a lesson. Otherwise you are leaving it to chance if there are enough instructors if you show up on the day and want a lesson.

Rentals at Big Bear

Don’t have your own equipment? No stress. You’ll need your winter clothes but Big Bear can provide you with the rest. They have regular rental and also high-end demo gear for an additional cost.

The standard rentals are Burton snowboards and Head skis at Big Bear but the upgrades include Arbor, Mervin, Bataleon and higher end Burton snowboards. For skis, the demo skis include K2, Salomon, Head and Rossignol.

Peak Seeker Pro Tip: Book online more than a day in advance to secure your rentals. Otherwise you’ll be left to hoping they have rentals available when you show up.

The Trails at Big Bear: What to Know

Lifts at Bear Mountain.
Lifts at Bear Mountain. Photo Credit: mauscriptrep (Flickr CC)

Not all the trails at the same at Big Bear. Spread out over multiple peaks, it can be a hard decision to know which are the most fun. Here are a few of our favorites at each level.

Beginner trails at Big Bear

  • Easy Street
  • Learning Curve
  • Park Run (Lower)


  • Accelerator
  • Timber Ridge
  • Perfect Pitches


  • Off Chute
  • Log Chute

Expert trails

  • The Wall

Big Bear Mountain Terrain Parks: Must Knows

We are glad you asked. With over 200 park features, Big Bear is a park lover’s paradise. Start off small in the beginner and family park then advance as you level up your skills. Beginners can start on Park Run (Lower) while if you are more advanced than Park Run (Upper) will be more your style.

The experts can even find a 18 foot half pipe to test their skills and throw it down.

Other Winter Activities at Big Bear: Things to Try

If downhill just isn’t enough for you then there is other options for activities at Bear Mountain Ski Resort as well. Big Bear mountain ski resort tubing is an awesome activity for the entire family. Head over to Snow Summit for the Big Bear tubing park.

After flying down one of the exciting runs, just hop on the magic carpet and take it back to the top. Head back to Bear Mountain in the summer for summertime tubing or to shred up the Summit Bike Park.

Final Thoughts on Bear Mountain Ski Resort

Bear Mountain ski resort is four seasons of fun. It doesn’t matter if you are a first timer or have years of experience in your riding journey, Bear Mountain is a must visit. Pack up your gear and make a weekend out of Big Bear, you’ll be glad you did.

Let us know your favorite trails in the comments below.

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