If you’re looking for a longer, less intense hike or for a great place to view Big Bear Lake from the seat of your mountain bike, look no further than the Skyline Trail in Big Bear at the south end of the lake.
We love this trail because it’s not too intense and it’s longer than a lot of the trails around the lake. It also connects to one of our other favorite area hikes, the Pine Knot Trail, at Grand View Point, after several miles. You can stop at Grand View, turn around or continue along the Skyline Trail for several miles.
Either way, you’ll get to enjoy the view from the point. Hike to the point for phenomenal views of San Gorgonio, the highest peak in Southern California, and even Catalina Island off the coast of Los Angeles. With or without the view, the trail is a great way to take in the scrubby high desert landscape around Bear Lake. Pine trees and low-lying shrubs bring vibrancy to the bright tan rocks and sand along the trail.
Part of this trail also creates a 12.5-mile loop that begins at the Aspen Glen Picnic Area and connects with the Pine Knot Trail.
Skyline Trail in Big Bear is rated as moderate, gaining just 1,532 feet over the 11.6-mile round trip. From the trailhead, it climbs through switchbacks for 1.8 miles. After another short climb, you’ll reach Snow Summit. You also can start at Snow Summit by taking a chair lift up to the trailhead from the resort.
Though the trail is very well maintained, it meanders alongside a fire road so take care to stay on the trail. Some hikers choose to park along this fire road instead of at the dirt lot at the beginning of the trail.
Hikers also should stay alert for mountain bikers because this trail is perhaps more well known for that sport.
You’ll need a $5 Adventure Pass ($30 annual) or a qualifying federal recreation pass.
Take Moonridge Road to Clubview Drive. Stay on Clubview Drive until it ends and becomes 2N10. Drive to the intersection of 2N10 and 2N06 and you’ll see the trailhead.
Other Big Bear experiences: