Gold Mountain – San Bernardino Mountains

Where: San Bernardino Mountains
Mileage: 6.25 miles
Difficulty: Easy to Moderate
Elevation gain: 1000 feet
Recommended: Binoculars

To get to the trailhead: 
Take 18 across North in between Baldwin and Big Bear Lake. Make a right on the 18 until you hit Holcomb Valley Rd. Make a right here and continue up the mountain until you hit a intersection, make a left and look for parking as soon as you hit a “mill”.

To be honest, before we ended up here, we drove 25 miles past the hike we were going to do, we decided late enough to check out Gold Mountain. Starting out on a dirt flat road the remains of a mining operation in the range were in sight.

Gold Mountain is one of the prominent peaks on the northeast side of Big Bear Lake sitting at 8,235 feet. Elias J. “Lucky” Baldwin a millionaire from San Francisco struck a deal to construct a mill that started a “gold rush” in 1874. The mill ran for 20 years because the cost to recover the gold exceeded the profit.

Heading up from the mill on the dirt road we finally hit the 4 wheel drive trail that would take us all the way to the top. After about a mile we hit the Pacific Crest Trail. Staying on the Gold Mountain trail we headed up 1000 feet to a panorama view overlooking the town of Big Bear and Big Bear Lake with an array of views of San Gorgonio’s white range in the distance.

Gold Mountain 012

Note to self: Check map from initial move, though

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