Adventure Pass and Big Bear Lake

The Adventure Pass Program is now in its 16th year in the Southern California National Forests. In 1996 Congress passed legislation authorizing the Forest Service to charge fees for recreational use. People recreating in the Southern California National Forests are required to purchase a pass for many popular areas of the Forest and display it on their vehicle. This pass can be purchased for a day ($5) or for a year ($30).

The San Bernardino National Forest is one of four heavily visited forests in southern California that are a part of the Adventure Pass program. All four forests are heavily used, requiring constant up-keep and maintenance to the 31 High Use Recreational Areas (HIRAs) and the designated developed sites within their borders. The San Bernardino manages seven of these HIRAs. The Adventure Pass is a day-use fee established for use of these areas and the facilities and services that support heavy visitation. Since these are recreation “use” fees and not fees for “entry” to the national forest, no pass is required for travel through the forest or for “incidental” activities such as stopping to take a photograph, visiting a developed overlook or using a restroom. Individual developed recreation sites (like campgrounds) may require a separate overnight camping fee. Adventure passes cover all day-use fees in Recreation Areas and in some developed recreational sites.

Partial List of Fee Areas

High Impact Recreational Areas

  • Children’s Forest
  • Coon Creek & heart Bar
  • Big Bear
  • Forest Falls
  • Picnic Area
  • Aspen Glen
  • Grout Bay
  • Juniper Point
  • Meadows Edge
  • Thurman Flats

Trailheads & Staging

  • Cougar Crest
  • Gray’s Peak
  • South Fork
  • Woodland Interpretive Trail

Additional Sites

  • Greyback Ampitheater
  • Juniper Point Parking Areas

The next Adventure Pass free days will be Veteran’s Day weekend, November 10 – 12.

More About Activities in Big Bear;

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