Sunday, April 12, 2009

Bertha Peak

Cougar Crest Trail up to Bertha Peak is a classic Big Bear hike. Bertha Peak is centered above the entire Big Bear Valley, so it offers great views in all directions of the lake, town and even Holcomb Valley. The trail is steep, ascending almost 1,500 feet in about 3 miles. You should be in relatively good physical condition to hike it, but it will be worth it!

Trail Basics

~ 7 miles (round trip) (about 3-4 hours of hiking total)
Start at 6804', peak at 8201'
What to bring:
Good trail shoes, water, food, sunscreen, camera, smile
Adventure Pass:
You will need an Adventure Pass to park at the trailhead
**Hiking is strenuous and potentially dangerous. It is your own responsibility to be prepared for the circumstances into which you venture. The information on this page is provided as a courtesy only; it is not meant to replace proficiency taking care of yourself in the wilderness.


View Larger Map

Directions to the Trailhead

From the town of Big Bear, you'll need to find Stanfield Cutoff and go across it to the North until you're at the intersection of Stanfield and North Shore Drive / Hwy 38. Go west about 1.6 miles. A few hundred feet after you pass the Discovery Center, you'll see the sign for Cougar Crest and the entrance to the parking area on the right.

Trail Directions

Start up paved path which will change to dirt quickly. Trail starts out wide and the will narrow after about a mile. You will be hiking on the south side of the ridge slowly rising in elevation and getting great views of the lake and ski resorts. You will cross over a saddle and to the other side of the ridge (Holcomb Valley side) for about 1/8 mile. Then at 2.2 miles you will meet up with the PCT and you will need to bear right staying on the south side (lake side) of the ridge.

You will be on the PCT for less than ½ mile. Then you will come upon a dirt road which you will turn RIGHT on. Look for white post that has a faded BERTHA PEAK written on it.

You will follow this steep access road ¾ mile to the peak. You will be able to see the radio towers that you are headed toward for encouragement that you are almost there. Seven Summits marker and punch are attached low on the south side of the fencing.


Phong said...

Hi, my friends and I are planning to hike this when we go to Big Bear in late May. Do you have the exact gps coordinates of Bertha Peak and what hikes do you recommend for novices.

rickstep said...

Bertha is N34 16.965 W116 53.959

Hiked Bertha today. Got to the top and no 7 Summits punch. The sign is there, but no punch. :-(

Phong said...

How was the hike? I plan to do it this weekend with some friends.

rickstep said...

The hike was good. It is a very scenic hike. Lots of flowers blooming. A bit steep in the last 3/4 mile, but the views are worth it!

Anonymous said...

Has anyone checked since Rickstep went to the summit to find out if the punch was put up yet?

Phong said...

I went this past weekend with some friends. Most of us are beginners and novices. The scenery was great and we had a fun time. That last leg of the hike was tough though. I did not see any punch card at the peak, just a sign-in notebook in the canister.

Anonymous said...

I made the climb today with my dog and the punch was very easy to find!!!

1 down, 6 to go!!

Jim said...

Hiked Bertha Peak yesterday 7/05/09. Trail was in great condition and was a beautiful day for a hike. If you have not done this hike before save some energy for the last 3/4 of a mile. pretty steep. Learned of the seven summits at the peak so we didn't have a punch card, but are looking forward to the other 6 hikes.

Heather DeVito said...

Bertha Peak 2010 punch is set at the top. Trail in excellent condition all the way up as of 4/30/10.

Diane said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Diane said...

Hi, My Girlfriends and I hiked this one on Sunday May 30 2010. Nice hike weather was perfect... We dated and signed the notebook in the canister however, we did not have our card to punch. We had a wonderful time I did not feel the hike was difficult but very enjoyable with beautiful views.
Diane M, Laura O. & Diane E.