Logging in the Mountains

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San Bernardino Mountains, CA, July 26, 2014 - Although Big Bear and the surrounding San Bernardino mountain communities are best known for recreation, outdoor locations for Hollywood productions, and the gold rush of the late 1800s, it was logging that was the big industry in the early 1900s. Logging in the San Bernardino Mountains was once done … [Read more...]

Fireworks in Big Bear: The Best in SoCal

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Big Bear, CA, June 28, 2014 - On Friday July 4th, Big Bear residents and visitors to our valley will be treated to one of the largest and most unique fireworks displays in all of southern California. Shot from a barge in the lake, the fireworks are brilliant in our clear mountain air and we get the added bonus of their reflections on the … [Read more...]

Old Miners Days has Rich History

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Big Bear, CA, June 14, 2014 - In the summer of 1927, Big Bear had a parade celebrating its history that went right down Pine Knot Blvd. Local Big Bear historians think this may have been the true beginning of Old Miners Days. This year marks 65 years of Old Miners Days, Big Bear's longest running community event. Back in the early days through … [Read more...]

Mistletoe: Parasite & Provider

San Bernardino Mountains, CA, June 7, 2014 - According to an old Scandinavian Christmas custom, a couple who meets under hanging mistletoe is obliged to kiss. But mistletoe's function in the forest is actually less romantic: as a parasite, it attaches to the branches of a host tree or shrub, and absorbs water and nutrients from the host … [Read more...]

Remnants of History: God’s Eye

Baldwin Lake, CA, May 31, 2014 - When the Serrano Indians used local mountains as a summer residence between 2,000 and 2,500 years ago, they were known as The People of the Pines. They were skilled basket weavers and pottery makers, and they worshipped a huge dome of brilliant white quartz as the eye of their creator, “Kruktat”, calling it … [Read more...]

Resort Life… in Turn of the Century Big Bear

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Big Bear, CA, May 31, 2014 - As soon as Big Bear Lake was created by building the original 'Rock Dam' in 1885, tourists started visiting  Bear Valley. In 1888, Gus Knight Jr. and John Metcalf purchased 80 acres on the south shore of the lake to build the valley's first resort, The Bear Valley Hotel. Despite the fact that it took two days by stage … [Read more...]

Santa’s Village: First in the Country

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San Bernardino Mountains, CA, May 17, 2014 - When Santa's Village opened it's doors in 1955 in Skyforest, it was the first franchised theme park in the country, beating Disneyland's opening by more than a month. It was the first of three Santa's Villages built by developer Glenn Holland. In it's heyday, it was one of Southern California's biggest … [Read more...]

The Legend of Castle Rock

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Big Bear Lake, CA, May 3, 2014 - Rising out of the mountains at the southwest end of the lake, standing like a sentinel keeping watch over Big Bear, is Castle Rock. There is a Serrano Indian legend that surrounds Castle Rock from a time long ago when Big Bear was known as Yuhaviat, which means 'pine place'. The legend tells of a beautiful young … [Read more...]

The Road to Big Bear

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Big Bear, CA, April 26, 2014 - The first road into the San Bernardino Mountains, which was really just a trail, was built by the Mormons in 1852 and ascended Waterman Canyon. Big Bear Lake was created in 1885 and the only way up, other than a pack trail up Santa Ana Canyon, was a long arduous trip up Cushenbury Grade. To get to the Grade, visitors … [Read more...]

Pebble Plain Habitat… Only in Big Bear

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Big Bear Valley, CA, April 12, 2014 - When the glaciers receded during the Pleistocene Age, they created unique open areas covered with miniature rare plants found only in Big Bear. These areas are known as pebble plains and have a soil composition of quartzite pebbles, deposited over eons, which prevent conifers from taking seed, thus preserving … [Read more...]