Some weeks back in January, Kirk and I took an overnight trip to Big Bear. Just a two hour drive from beachy Carlsbad and we were 7000 feet up in the San Bernadino Mountains. Pine trees, log cabins, brisk mountain air and snow.

We left late Saturday night, arrived at 2 a.m., and crashed at a friend of a friend’s neighbor’s cabin. The next morning we hit the slopes.

Skiing Big Bear - 1

Skiing Big Bear - 2

Skiing Big Bear - 3

Skiing Big Bear - 4

Skiing Big Bear - 5

Skiing Big Bear - 6

Skiing Big Bear - 7

Skiing Big Bear - 8

Both of us started the day with low expectations. The last time we had skied was at Vail and A-Basin, and boy, nothing (in the US) compares to skiing the Colorado Rockies. ‘SoCal skiing’ seemed a contradiction of terms.

Snow Summit surprised us. With a vertical drop of 1200 feet (though only a third of what many Colorado resorts have) it’s still much bigger than anything Kirk and I were used to skiing as kids in the Midwest. Additionally, despite any recent snowfall, all the runs were covered with a healthy layer of snow. Big Bear resorts are renowned for their snowmaking capabilities, thanks to nearby Big Bear Lake.

Expectations exceeded. I hope we go back. ☼

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There are two Big Bear Mountain Resorts: Bear Mountain and Snow Summit. It’s easy to shuttle between the two if you want to ski both in one day.