Hike the Cougar Crest Trail

Rate this Adventure Orange County Cougar Crest Trailhead

Added by Tori Marsh

One of the more popular hikes in Big Bear, the Cougar Crest Trail offers hikers spectacular views of the lake and the surrounding San Bernardino Mountains. 

On the north side of Big Bear Lake, just off the 38, you will find a turn off for the Cougar Crest Trail. The parking lot is well marked, and signs for the trailhead are easy to spot. Parking is not an issue if you come in later in the afternoon, but the hike can get crowded during peak hours. Follow signs towards the Pacific Crest Trail (the Cougar Crest Trail links up with the PCT). 

The path can be a bit rocky with a gradual incline so bring sturdy shoes and plenty of water! There are plenty of benches along the way where you can stop to take a break and enjoy the amazing views of Big Bear Lake and the wilderness. 

If you feel up to it, you can extend the hike and continue on the historic Pacific Crest Trail!

Pack List

  • Water
  • Sturdy hiking shoes
  • Camera
  • Sunscreen
  • Snacks
  • Hat
  • Sunglasses

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Please respect the places you find on The Outbound.

Always practice Leave No Trace ethics on your adventures. Be aware of local regulations and don't damage these amazing places for the sake of a photograph. Learn More



Chillin, Hiking, Photography

Skill Level:



Spring, Summer, Autumn

Trail Type:



6.7 Miles

Elev. Gain:

938 Feet


Dog Friendly
Easy Parking

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Added by Tori Marsh

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