A drive of an hour and a half will get you from the border of LA County into the San Bernardino Mountain resort community of Big Bear. From there you can follow a number of trails to the heights above the lake, where you will be surrounded by the sounds and scents of the pine and cedar forest. We bypassed the gentle Grey’s Peak Trail and drove to Couger Crest Trail because it connects to the legendary PCT.
We hiked and what do you know, we once again stumbled on forest art. What at first looked like a random collection of rock piles became a sort of campfire diorama created from stones and sticks. As we got closer, we could make out a “cabin,” a circle of baby cairns, seemingly led by a big adult cairn. Even a fire pit.
So we continued climbing, goofing off, chatting and taking many, many pictures. Along the way we met through hikers from France and from Wisconsin, even a couple who brought their 5 month old in a front pack! (They turned around at the PCT.)