Featured Home: Timber Wolf Den

Location, location, location! The Village in Big Bear Lake always has it going on. They even have a schedule of events every week so you can decide what you want to do while vacationing here. Timber Wolf Den is within four blocks of the lake – totally walkable – and a very short drive to the Village. Which means it’s also super close to Snow Summit! Skiing and snow boarding is in full swing and this cabin is in the perfect spot. And after a day on the slopes you can relax in the hot tub!

Log cabin feel with the luxury of modern day amenities! Inside cozy leather couches and lazy boy chairs surround the floor to ceiling stone fireplace. Perfect for hanging out, chatting and reconnecting with family and friends. Open kitchen with breakfast bar, stainless steel appliances and plenty of space for cooking. This is the perfect home for families. The master bedroom has a California King and private bath while the other bedrooms have full beds and bunk beds.

For more information and availability of this Big Bear Rental visit Timber Wolf Den’s details page

Extreme Winter Weather!

Extreme Mountain Snowfall Is Expected in Big Bear

We have had a series of snow storms in Big Bear and it has been awesome for the slopes!  It’s also awesome because we need the lake to fill up for summer activities!

We have a winter storm that is projecting up to four feet of snow over the course of several days and is expected to be the biggest storm we’ve had since 2010!  All of us that work in the call center at Big Bear Vacations are locals! And we have some tips to share with you.

Driving in Inclement Weather:

  • Check Caltrans website before driving up the mountain to find out about road
    conditions:
    http://www.dot.ca.gov/
  • Always carry snow chains, extra water, blankets and a change of clothes in your vehicle.  If you have to put chains on you will get wet and cold. I use a yoga mat to kneel on – it helps keep me dry. I also carry towels in my car to wipe off the dirt and grime that is inevitable while putting chains on.  
  • Wear treaded snow shoes/boots.
  • Make sure your chains fit your tires before you head up the mountain
    (I recommend practicing putting them on before you head up the hill) – finding out you have the wrong size can put a severe damper on your travel plans.
  • DO NOT DRIVE OVER 30 MPH WITH CHAINS ON – you will ruin your tires and can damage your car as well.
  • Drive slow and steady – it is not a race and we want you to arrive on the mountain safely.
  • Carry a window scraper in your car.
  • I personally carry a backpack that has survival gear in it. Stuff like matches, Swiss army knife, bottled water, spare set of gloves, chap stick, snacks, flashlight, beanie, spare coat and extra cash.

Big Bear Vacation Services:

  • It is necessary to be prepared to drive in the snow and put chains on your car if needed. We recommend pulling into a parking lot to put your chains on so that you are safe and not standing in oncoming traffic. 
  • Unfortunately, the staff at Big Bear Vacations is not allowed to assist in putting snow chains on your car.
    Chain installers: Sean Rabago 909-255-2834
    Steve Thompson 909-222-0265.

  • In the event your car becomes stuck you can call a towing company:
    Big Bear Towing: 909-585-2600
    Club Towing 909-866-5474.
  • A shovel will be provided at the cabin you have rented so you can shovel side walks, stairs, drive ways, etc. – while we understand it can be a bit tedious to shovel while on vacation it is part of the Big Bear Snow Experience!!
  • Snow can be slushy during the day when the temperatures increase and the sun starts working its magic, but once the sun goes down that will quickly turn to ice. Kitty litter is an inexpensive way to add slip protection. Big Bear Vacations will bring you cinders for the ice – just be aware that during storms you could be waiting a long time.

  • Last week we had power outage that lasted about 12 hours. Because of that I was unable to use a credit or debit card and was happy about the extra cash I carry in my car survival kit!

This blog was a bit technical!  As always if you have any questions, please do not hesitate to call. And remember – slow and steady will get you safely up the mountain!

Where to eat in Big Bear

Restaurants near Big Bear Mountain Resorts
You’ll certainly work up quite the appetite after a long day of skiing or snowboarding in Big Bear. Some of the best shredding in Southern California calls for some of the best food. We believe choosing any of these restaurants after a successful day on the slopes will please your stomach.

Big Bear Lake Brewing Company

Big Bear Lake Brewing Company is quickly becoming one of the favorite spots in
Big Bear. The gastro pub offers a large selection of beer that is brewed onsite, and a full menu of delicious pub food. The stuffed Avocado Bombs have quickly gained notoriety for their combination of unique presentation and great flavor.

Saucy Mama’s Pizzeria
There’s an old-school ambiance with the fun and flair of a newer pizza joint at Saucy Mama’s. The pizza here is from a recipe that has been passed down from great grandma, the original Saucy Mama. Sauces and dough are made from scratch daily, so your pizza is always going to taste fresh. Saucy Mama’s is also the only hand-tossed pizza in Big Bear – this is the spot for pie lovers.

In addition to delicious pizza, there’s also beer and wine served at Saucy Mama’s. They want you to unwind after a long day on the slopes. What better way to do so than to dive into a pizza on the patio with a glass of craft beer on the side?

572 Social Kitchen & Lounge
The name of this place nearly tells it all. Aptly titled for its address and what’s inside, the 572 Social Kitchen & Lounge is another ideal spot for a meal during your bachelorette party. The restaurant focuses on modern dishes, but also features some American classics that will make your mouth water. The Cali Burger is loaded with applewood-smoked bacon, avocado, onion, lettuce, tomato and Tillamook cheddar cheese. Accompany the burger with a cocktail of your choice for the full 572 experience. The outdoor patio is perfect for a summer lunch in the Village.

Featured Home “Peaceful Pines”

Located in the Bear Mountain area in Big Bear Lake, Peaceful Pines is a two bedrooms, one bath cabin that sleeps four.

I am a huge fan of hot springs.  Been to more than 100 hot springs, some that are easy to get to, some that are miles of hiking, but the best part is the view.  While hot tubs are not natural hot springs, they are the next best thing! Some of our cabins offer the best views while sitting on the deck immersed in a Jacuzzi!  For instance, Peaceful Pines is located in the Moonridge area with views of the forest and if you are lucky you will hear the wolves howling (safely inside the confines of the Zoo of course!). And that’s just the outside!

Then you get to the inside! You know that feeling when you walk into a home and you just think, yep! This is it, this is the awesome ambiance that I was looking for! Peaceful Pines is that cabin; super cozy living room area surrounds a wood burning fireplace and entirely adorable kitchen! Two bedroom one full bath it sleeps up to four.  What could be better than that?

See more info about 1634 Peaceful Pines heres

Big Bear’s Best Cup of Joe

Cap Off Your Big Bear Experience with a Great Cup of Joe!coffee in big bear
Whether you come to Big Bear for the brisk mountain air and the thrill of skiing in the wintertime or you come for the scenic hiking and pleasant days by Big Bear Lake during the summer, there’s nothing like starting off your day with an amazing cup of coffee in one of the quaint coffee shops in this charming alpine town. Before you hit the slopes or the water, check out our list below of the top local coffee shops to grab a cup of coffee in Big Bear when you want to begin the day on a high note!

Moonridge Coffee
Particularly convenient when you want to stop for coffee before a long day of skiing, snowboarding, and the like, Moonridge Coffee is located right next to Bear Mountain Resort, serving as a wonderful outlet for awesome brews, hearty breakfast options, and the cheapest prices that you can get when you’re that close to the resort.

The Copper Q
For the quintessentially pleasant tourist coffee shop experience in Big Bear, look no further than The Copper Q. They have excellent coffee and tea, in addition to serving breakfast, lunch, and dinner, as well as providing cooking demonstrations for their patrons.

Teddy Bear Restaurant
Grab a slice of Big Bear’s best pie while you sip on your coffee, as Teddy Bear Restaurant’s most famous dessert will not disappoint. The restaurant is also well-known for its delicious breakfast and comfort food menu items.

Grizzly Manor Café
While Grizzly Manor Café and the previously mentioned Teddy Bear Restaurant are admittedly not your stereotypical coffee shops, both provide excellent coffee and a bevy of breakfast options. Grizzly Manor Café in particular is renowned for its food, with lines often stretching out the door. If you’re up for waiting, you’re sure to enjoy the old school diner-feel of this traditional restaurant with amazing java.

Big Bear Vacations Can Help You Start Planning Your Alpine Adventure Today!
Contact our dedicated team of reservation specialists to learn more about what there is to see and do in Big Bear all year long when you book your stay today in one of our quaint and cozy cabins for a traditional experience in the mountains of Big Bear, California!  Or view & book all of the available  Big Bear Cabins here.

Santa’s Village Big Bear Lake

‘Twas the night before Christmas, when all thro’ the house
Not a creature was stirring, not even a mouse;
The stockings were hung by the chimney with care,
In hopes that St. Nicholas soon would be there;
The children were nestled all snug in their beds,
While visions of sugar plums danc’d in their heads…

Santa's Village at Shore Acres in Big Bear Lake

A average December morning begins with the alarm beeping a tune that still sounds annoying no matter which ring tone selected on the phone. It is ok – because most of us were dreaming about the work anyway. Next the coffee maker hisses and the squawk of the news fill the room. Checking email…perhaps dressing kids….pouring cereal….bus stops….commute….traffic….darnit! Clocking in 1 minute late. Thinking about Christmas presents, a performance, gotta put gas in the car, why does the phone keep doing that? Oh. Its ringing.

There is just one thing in your heart at the end of the day. It would be nice to getaway and have a perfect Christmas for once. Is there any way to do that anymore without buying a plane ticket?

And mamma in her ’kerchief, and I in my cap,  
Had just settled our brains for a long winter’s nap,  
When out on the lawn there arose such a clatter,  
I sprang from the bed to see what was the matter.
Away to the window I flew like a flash,  
Tore open the shutters and threw up the sash…

Not far away snow is falling on 11 little cabins and twinkling lights of every color dance off the surface of the Lake. The Guests there are with family and friends and the muffled sounds of laughter and a too loud tv interrupt the scene in a gentle way. Wood smoke from a hot fireplace tingle the nostrils and someone is barbecuing nearby. One of the larger cabins have the sounds of little feet pattering here and there and children whispering about Santa.

Cabin at Shore Acres Lodge / Santa's Village

The moon on the breast of the new-fallen snow  
Gave the lustre of mid-day to objects below,  
When, what to my wondering eyes should appear,
But a miniature sleigh, and eight tiny reindeer,  
With a little old driver, so lively and quick,  
I knew in a moment it must be St. Nick.

It is time to make a wish come true. A short journey to a mini North Pole is just a phone call away. Santa’s Village Big Bear Lake is waiting for you to come visit. Every cabin filled with Holiday decor inside and out. Santa and Mrs. Claus have been making visits on the weekends, listening to children’s wishes and handing out candy canes and cocoa.

Shore Acres Lodge / Santa's Village

More rapid than eagles his coursers they came,  
And he whistled, and shouted, and called them by name;
“Now, Dasher! now, Dancer! now, Prancer and Vixen!  
On, Comet! on, Cupid! on, Donder and Blitzen!  
To the top of the porch! to the top of the wall!  
Now dash away! dash away! dash away all!”  
As dry leaves that before the wild hurricane fly,
When they meet with an obstacle, mount to the sky;  
So up to the house-top the coursers they flew,  
With the sleigh full of Toys, and St. Nicholas too.

At the end of the day there is a small part of Holiday magic in each of us. Sometimes we can be so busy we forget the wonder of the Holidays and the true meaning it holds. It is not about the gifts, or the bling. It is about making memories with the ones we love.

And then, in a twinkling, I heard on the roof  
The prancing and pawing of each little hoof.
As I drew in my head, and was turning around,  
Down the chimney St. Nicholas came with a bound.  
He was dressed all in fur, from his head to his foot,  
And his clothes were all tarnished with ashes and soot;  
A bundle of Toys he had flung on his back,
And he looked like a pedler just opening his pack.

I myself can attest there is a little magic in this place. Not long ago I was a Guest at cabin #109 nestled in front of the boat dock at the edge of the Lake. I had spent the day in the desert where hot palm trees flitted in a dust storm offering very little shade. That evening I forgot all about the desert as I looked at the glass like water reflect the mountains and felt a chill in the air causing goose pimples on my arms. It is hard to believe the relief I felt as I watched my children sneak down towards the water to get a closer look at a blue heron standing there. In the morning I woke just in time to see a mighty sunrise. I carried my son onto the patio wrapped in his blanky; watched his tired eyes get wide as the horizon turned colors and painted designs on the clouds.

Shore Acres Lodge / Santa's Village

His eyes—how they twinkled! his dimples how merry!  
His cheeks were like roses, his nose like a cherry!  
His droll little mouth was drawn up like a bow  
And the beard of his chin was as white as the snow;
The stump of a pipe he held tight in his teeth,  
And the smoke it encircled his head like a wreath;  
He had a broad face and a little round belly,  
That shook when he laughed, like a bowlful of jelly.

This Christmas, come to Big Bear and be part of the Big Bear Vacations family. We are not in the Vacation Rental business, we are in the business of making memories that last a lifetime. Make Big Bear your home away from home. Bring that big coat at the back of the closet and the kids winter gloves. Plan on an adventure that recharges and rejuvenates you, making you ready for the coming year. Maybe that will mean a stroll through the Village where shops faces are toting elegant or unique wares, a lovely dinner at the restaurants nearby, or perhaps tasting the samplers at both breweries and deciding which one is the best! Your perfect Holiday getaway might happen on the mountain with skis or snow boots on, sliding down one of our tubing hills, or ziplining through the woods. The plethora of options tucked away in Big Bear make designing a perfect Christmas an easy task.

Big Bear Lake

He was chubby and plump, a right jolly old elf,
And I laughed when I saw him, in spite of myself;  
A wink of his eye and a twist of his head,  
Soon gave me to know I had nothing to dread;  
He spoke not a word, but went straight to his work,  
And filled all the stockings; then turned with a jerk,
And laying his finger aside of his nose,  
And giving a nod, up the chimney he rose;  
He sprang to his sleigh, to his team gave a whistle,  
And away they all flew like the down of a thistle,  
But I heard him exclaim, ere he drove out of sight,
“Happy Christmas to all, and to all a good-night.”

The other evening I was watching a movie that has become a Christmas tradition: The Polar Express. It is about a young boy who goes on a journey of the heart to the North Pole that shows him that the wonder of life never fades for those who believe. A small reminder he carries with him is a bell Santa gave him, the ring of the bell can only be heard by those who hold Christmas in their hearts.

When I am lucky enough to visit Santa’s Village, especially after a fresh snow, I can tell you I hear the bell. It is one of those magic places that remind you to Believe.

You are invited to come spend the Holidays with us.

Comedy Comes To Big Bear

This weekend Big Bear Lake is having its first ever comedy festival. It’s kind of a big deal. Two nights, lots of comedians at three different venues that are all within walking distance of each other. I’m not really a stand up comedy kind of girl. I have an odd sense of humor that doesn’t seem to align with what comedians think is funny. And I feel guilty if I don’t laugh. I mean this is how they make their living and I’m just sitting there like please don’t look at me because you are going to be disappointed in my lack of enthusiasm!

That being said it’s going to be a really fun event for people that like stand up comedy – don’t let my weirdness dissuade you from attending!! I will probably give it a shot myself! I’ll just sit in the back where they can’t see me!!

The summer really did seem to go by in the blink of an eye. This weekend we fall back to standard time, it gets dark too early, but it’s light earlier in the morning. I have a love/hate relationship with the time change; I’m all about getting as much sun as I can in one day, but the smell of pumpkin spice everywhere is lovely and generally only happens around this time.

Thanksgiving is my favorite holiday. It’s actually the only one I really care about. No worrying about buying gifts, decorating trees, hanging lights, just family and friends getting together to be thankful for each other. As you well know by now I’m originally an Idahoan turned Californian – but the tradition of our family lives on and I’m excited to go see my mom and do the same things we do every year.

At Big Bear Vacations we have a really fabulous Thanksgiving special for those of you that want to experience the holiday in Big Bear. Stay three nights and get the fourth night free! We are already starting to fill up so don’t procrastinate!

Very soon it will be snowing and ski and snowboard season will be upon us! And then Christmas and the New Year will be right around the corner. Stay tuned for my next blog where I will discuss surviving the cold winter season!!!

Around Town with Ali – Fall Is Here

FALL IS HERE!!!!!! Leaves are turning colors, nights are chilly but the days are sunny and warm. It is the perfect time to be in Big Bear Lake. Having recently moved here, I wasn’t sure what to expect in terms of the fall season – my biggest question – is there a fall season in southern California? Heck yes there is and I am not at all disappointed! So much to do, so much to see!!!!

I recently attended Hot Dawgs and Handrails (an elite snowboarding event) – and while this event has passed – you should definitely mark it on your calendars for next year. Sitting in the sunshine, watching the staff at Bear Mountain make snow, I was intrigued by this process. They do not make snow in Idaho – I’d never seen anything like it. I was an adult suddenly trapped in an eight year old mind frame. I was tempted to run out there, jump in and make a snow angel. I contained myself. I wanted to see the competition and was sure I’d be escorted out if I dared to fling myself into the artificial snow bank!

October means Halloween is coming and I am super excited to check out Panic in the Park haunted house! I love haunted houses and can’t wait to see what awaits me in this cavern of creepy things.

When I was a kid I loved trick or treating. I mean who doesn’t like candy? And all you have to do is wear a costume and yell trick or treat? Let’s see, dress up as my favorite character, be wild and get yummy goodies – yes please, sign me up for that! I’d still trick or treat if I thought I could get away with it, but I’m just too tall to pretend to be a child, which is extremely disappointing!

The Village shops close their doors on Halloween and then reopen them to trick or treaters from 4:30 p.m. – 8:30 p.m. – great way for your kids to have a safe and happy Halloween.

Whether you have never been to Big Bear in the fall, or you return every year, there are too many activities to list in this blog – so just get up here and check them out!

Happy fall y’all – and Happy Halloween too!!!

For a comprehensive list of Halloween activities visit: bigbeargrizzly.net!