Fall Getaway To Big Bear California (A Socially-Distant Trip)

Being Michiganders at heart, Nick and I REALLY miss the four seasons while living in Arizona. I swear the autumn and winter call to me like that scene in Frozen 2 when Elsa keeps hearing that mysterious voice encouraging her to go north. Basically, I’m Elsa sans powers and cool dress and awesome singing voice and all the other things that make her the amazing character she is.

When we got in Friday night it was super dark and incredibly foggy from the smoke, so we could barely see a thing. After checking in our cabin at Oak Knoll Lodge (seriously adorable and rustic place to stay, they’re only ~$100/night and you get your own cabin with a kitchen, fireplace, porch, and everything) we left seeking food and beer.

Working from the cabin

On our way out, we were lucky enough to run into an actual bear, casually rummaging through the trash outside our cabin. It was a black bear, and being rather passive bears I wasn’t too nervous, but I still couldn’t snag a good picture.

After grabbing some awesome chocolate porters and pretzels we got dinner to-go and ate in our cabin. It was too cold to eat outside at that point, and frankly, we don’t feel comfortable eating indoors yet. The point of this travel blog is to do it in a safe and socially distanced way, and that does not include indoor dining yet!

Big Bear Brewing Co.

Waking up chilly was incredible, I can’t express enough how lovely it is. Warming up with Big Bear Coffee Roasting Co before heading out to hike Castle Rock was the perfect way to start the morning.

The hike was busier than I’d like. I knew it was a popular hike despite being on the harder side. We wore masks for the first half, but the population really dwindled after the first grueling mile uphill, and we didn’t see many more people after that. It was a little cool still, and the hike was a lot harder than I bargained for which probably means others felt similarly and didn’t continue on.

Fantastic views of the lake from the top of Castle Rock

We hiked a little over four miles and bouldered our way up the rock for the #views.

After a quick shower and breakfast at Country Inn, we meandered downtown until our segway tour. I don’t know how to describe this tour, other than to tell you that we zoomed our way from one yard to another, even checking out a parking lot because this guy was so obsessed with trees.

No joke. We went to a boatyard parking lot to see the trees.

Downtown was super busy, so after the segway tour we went to the cabin to relax. We got dinner Masala Craft which was incredible, super generous portions and one of the least expensive (and populated) places downtown.

Another cozy night in the cabin was much-needed, as was our morning yoga with Dana at Mountain Yoga Center. Out on the pier by the lake, soaking in the morning sunshine and stretching was the perfect pre-car ritual.

Lakeside morning yoga

If you’re anything like me and get really antsy in long car rides, I really recommend stretching and getting in some exercise before you get in the car.

We had such a blast, and I can’t thank Visit Big Bear enough for hosting us.

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