Big Bear Yellow Post Sites

San Bernardino National Forest

Free Camping Near Big Bear, CA

Big Bear Yellow Post Sites are a series of thirteen (13) campsites, though technically we’ve found 15 in all, each marked by a yellow post, all surrounding Big Bear Lake, CA. These sites were designated by the Mountaintop Ranger District of San Bernardino National Forest as free campsites. Each campsite is restricted to a single party of campers, with no more than eight (8) persons and two vehicles. All sites are first come, first serve, no reservations.

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San Bernardino National Forest, Mountaintop Ranger District

Mountaintop Ranger District Office:
Tel: (909) 382-2790


GPS: 34.26656, -116.95161 (Site #1)
Reservations: first-come, first-served
Camping Fee: none
Maximum Stay: 14 days in any 30-day period
Amenities: Fire rings, picnic tables


San Bernardino NF Visitor Guide, published by USFS, 2018
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Big Bear Yellow Post Sites, San Bernardino NF

Note: At one time there were as many 50-60 of these yellow post sites, today only 13 to 15 still remain usable.

All of these sites are accessible via car, van, or pickup truck, and 4WD is not necessary. Small trailers are okay, but nothing larger than 20 feet due to very narrow roads in places, and hairpin turns. Do not drive Class A or Class C motorhomes into here.

How Crowded: Most of these sites get filled up during the weekend. Your best bet is to get to a site between Monday-Thursday, and wait it out for the weekend.

How Noisy or Peaceful: Most of these sites are quiet and secluded to due to being isolated by themselves. On weekends, you will encounter some traffic noise.

Cellular Phone Signal: Site #1 gets decent signal from Verizon, but otherwise nearly all sites get weak to no signal.

Road Conditions: All sites are accessed via hard packed dirt and gravel roads. In some places, there is soft dirt. Many places, the road gets very narrow, there are hairpin turns where a longer trailer will track off the road.

Amenities Within Campground: Just picnic tables and fire rings.

Cost of Camping: It’s free to camp at these sites, first come, first serve.

Campfires: Campfires are allowed during certain times when fire restrictions have been lifted. Otherwise, the entire State of California requires a campfire permit, which are free, and can be obtained online from CalFire Campfire Website.

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