Holcomb Valley is located roughly 2.5-3 hours from Los Angeles. This area provides great opportunities to camp locally (but remember, no fires are permitted). The climbing is mostly sport, but there are some trad and top rope options. There is also something for every skill level.

Most of the drive to Holcomb Valley is done on regular paved roads until about the last hour when you get above Big Bear Lake and you start your journey on dirt roads. The road is extremely bumpy and has lots of pot holes but there are generally quite a few cars up there that don't have 4 wheel drive. There's great instructions on which dirt roads to take on Mountain Project .

The trailhead to get to the Holcomb Valley Pinnacles is where the dirt road ends at the "Climbers Camp". From the trailhead to the pinnacles is an easy hike, less than mile. There's a ton of different rock formations and areas to climb at the pinnacles. They don't make a guide book for this area anymore so information can be a bit hard to find. We just asked other climbers if they knew of any good climbs or what the beta was. The best advice is to do some research, ask around when you arrive, and just wing it - you'll be hard pressed not to enjoy yourself and find plenty of good climbing and hiking. While you are hiking in this area make sure to keep an eye out for rattle snakes, they are seen frequently and blend in with the rocks!

After a long day of climbing and figuring out routes head back to camp for some dinner but I encourage your adventure not to end when the sun goes down! After dinner, set back out to explore the crag at night. It feels like a completely different places with no one around. On a dark night the stars are really visible here. We scrambled up to the highest point we could (without using ropes) and found the perfect perch with a 360 degree view of the mountains and stars above. We stayed up there for quite a while taking it all in.

After you're done climbing or camping you can always head down into Big Bear and find some food and drinks! Big Bear Lake Brewing Co. is a favorite!

Pack List

  • Tent
  • Sleeping bag
  • Water (non in the area, bring extra)
  • Daypack
  • Hiking or approach shoes
  • Rock climbing gear
  • First Aid
  • Food
  • Hat
  • Sunscreen
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Activities Camping, Hiking, Rock Climbing
Skill Level Beginner
Season Year Round
Features
Family Friendly
Forest
Scenic

Reviews

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Overall rating: 

Sweet Area

Awesome area to camp and explore various types of climbing. Went on a weekend and it was surprisingly crowded in the parking lot, however, we didn't cross paths with many climbers throughout the day. I can't wait to come back and explore more. I believe, that you cannot have fires in this area and it can get chilly at night.

First heard about the pinnacles while at the Holcomb Valley Scout Camp nearby, got away on a weekend and had a blast climbing and hanging out. A good quick overnight trip or you can easily make a couple days out of it and there's tons to explore in the area.


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