"Rock hounds take note. When it’s too hot to climb in Joshua Tree National Park, where do you go?
Why, Big Bear, of course.
Climbing and bouldering are popular summer sports in Big Bear Valley with a wide variety of options for beginners and experienced athletes. Matt Smith of Big Bear Lake is preaching the rocks with the Big Bear Bouldering Club, which meets once a week to climb the friendly granite around the Valley.
Smith started the club last April to fill what he saw as a need to promote climbing in Big Bear. “All these years living here, I’ve never found a consistent group going on (free organized) climbs,” Smith says. “I would like to see climbing get bigger in here.”
The club meets at 5:45 p.m. every Tuesday at Starbucks before heading out to climb. The turnout varies. Some weeks, Smith is the lone climber. Other weeks as many as 15 people join the fun. “We’ve had kids out climbing,” Smith says. “Somebody from Los Angeles found out about it and showed up. They had a weekend home in Big Bear and didn’t even know there was climbing up here."