Adopt-A-Trail Program

Trails get us outside. They keep us healthy and help us to see the wonder and beauty of the natural lands in the San Bernardino National Forest. But, these trails do require care and maintenance.

The U.S. Forest Service manages the vast majority of our San Bernardino National Forest trails, but current federal budgets can’t keep up with annual trail work needs. Without regular maintenance, trails fall into disrepair, making them unusable and potentially even harmful to the natural environment. That’s why The San Bernardino National Forest, City of Big Bear Lake, San Bernardino County, Big Bear Mountain Resort, Southern California Mountains Foundation, and the Big Bear Valley Trails Foundation have united to form the Trails Advisory Group. This group is dedicated to improving the non-motorized trails across Big Bear, and is hoping you will participate in the Adopt-A-Trail Program to help! 

The Adopt-A-Trail Program steps in to help our trails by giving individuals, families, friends, groups, businesses, and clubs of any size an opportunity to adopt a section of trail on an annual basis. Each sponsor supports their Adopted Trail through financial contributions and volunteer trail work.

Additionally, mountain residents and visitors share a vision for the near future that includes new trails that connect neighborhoods and communities and provide both recreational and social access. A fully supported Adopt-A-Trail Program that demonstrates our capability to maintain existing trails is the first step along the path to that vision.

Your involvement in the Adopt-A-Trail program gives us the means to focus on a singular trail experience that not only balances environmental and recreational needs, but also entices peoples to visit year after year.

These trails need YOUR help.


When you join the Adopt-A-Trail Program

Two Signs On The Trail

As an adopter, your logo will be prominently displayed on signs at both ends of your adopted trail section. Visitors depend on these signs to keep them on the trail, headed in the right direction, and up to date on trail etiquette. This high visibility sign placement assures visitors remember your group name or brand as part of the trail experience.

Your Very Own Badge Of Honor

In addition to the logo placement on signs in the field, we also give you a classic “Adopt-A-Trail” sign to display proudly in your home or business. Use it to start conversations that promote the trail program and share your own trail experiences.

A Place in the Digital Spotlight

Your sponsorship is commendable, and we want to broadcast it to the world. Facebook accounts from the Big Bear Valley Trails Foundation and the Southern California Mountains Foundation will let people know when you join the Adopt-A-Trail program and when you’re out on the trail putting in volunteer hourse. Both organization’s websites will also proudly post your involvement and display your group’s name and logo.

On Display In Visitor Centers and At Events

Out of the woods, we have a presence at the Big Bear Discovery Center, the local visitor center which receives hundreds of thousands of visitors every year. All of the trails in the Big Bear area, as well as the groups that are helping to take care of it, are ready to be seen at our Adopt-A-Trail display.


This map shows the current status for all trail adoptions:

  • BLUE sections are looking for a full adoption
  • YELLOW sections are looking for a volunteer adoption
  • GREEN sections are looking for a financial adopter
  • RED sections are fully adopted

Current Adopters

Baldwin Lake Ecological Preserve Trail
Baldwin Lake Ecological Preserve Trail Volunteer Adopter
Baldwin Lake Ecological Preserve Trail
Baldwin Lake Ecological Preserve Trail Financial Adopter
Matt & Brittney Bassett simply want to give back to the trails we use and love!
Champion Lodgepole & Bluff Mesa Trails
Champion Lodgepole & Bluff Mesa Trails Volunteer Adopter
The progeny of John E. Morrissey have adopted this trail section and maintain it in his honor.
Dickies, Fall Line, Pirates, & Skyline - Lower Plumber's
Dickies, Fall Line, Pirates, & Skyline - Lower Plumber's Volunteer Adopter
BBMR gives SoCal it's best skiiing, snowboarding, and mountain bike park.
Dickies Trail
Dickies Trail Financial Adopter
The World's Most Versatile Camera.
Santa Ana River Trail - Lower
Santa Ana River Trail - Lower Volunteer Adopter
Tod and Michael are two gentlemen from the San Diego area that ride bikes and work on trails.
Sugarloaf - Lower
Sugarloaf - Lower Volunteer Adopter
Keller Williams is a realtor in Big Bear Lake, CA.


Program Costs and How To Sign Up

Step 1: Choose How You Want To Contribute

You can help out with either Volunteer Hours, a Financial Donation, or both. For Volunteer Hours, each trail requires a commitment to perform at least 50 hours of volunteer work. Each trail has a different Financial Donation required, from $1,000 up to $3,000, depending upon the location and popularity of the trail. Heavily traveled trails get more visibility, so their adoption costs are higher.

Step 2: Pick A Trail Section

First, see what’s Available. The map above provides a broad overview of the area and has all of the Adopt-A-Trail sections on it. Click on a section to see what trail it is, who has adopted it, or if it is available. Use the above table to see a list of all the trail sections and their current status.

Step 3: Get In Touch With Us

Use the contact form to the right or email

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