Save Some Green

Green Valley Campground in the San Bernardinos

It won't cost a lot of green to sleep at Green Valley Campground. Located halfway between Lake Arrowhead and Big Bear Lake, this campground is right where you need to be for a quiet weekend in the mountains. There are 37 sites spread over a few loops, both in sunny fields and shaded pine groves. While most can be reserved in advance, 11 sites are first-come, first-served. Take a stroll to Green Valley Lake, which is just a mile away through a serene village of cabins. You can fish or just lounge by the water. The campground is quiet, and the mountain air will have you breathing deep. Go Green.

HIKE BONUS: Go from Green Valley Campground to Little Green Valley, a mountain meadow practically plucked from the Sierra. The 3-mile (round-trip) hike follows a wide dirt road up a crest behind the campground where you'll get westward views over Lake Arrowhead all the way to Mount Baldy in the San Gabriel Mountains. End the hike by taking Little Green Valley Trail across a stream that flows from the mountain meadow, which is circled by tall pines. Have a seat on a log and start working on that summer reading list.

Take CA-330 or CA-18 to Running Springs and drive east on CA-18 for 2.6 miles to Green Valley Lake Rd. Turn left and drive 4.5 miles to the campground entrance. Sites are $22 per night; reservations required (there are 11 first-come, first-served sites). For the hike, take a path starting behind site 35 across a stream to 2N19 and turn left to hike to Little Green Valley. Pass a couple of side roads (the main road is marked with blue blazes) and, after 1.1 miles, turn left at a split, leaving the main road, which is marked with blue blazes. Hike another quarter mile down to the edge of the meadow. Little Green Valley Trail crosses a stream to the right and goes around the edge of the meadow. Stop and turn around for a 3-mile hike (round-trip) or continue 1.2 miles down to the end of the trail at CA-18. The campground and trail are dog-friendly!

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