The Majestic Scenery of The San Bernardino Mountains
Last time I brought you along for a scenic tour of the historic Rim of the World Highway, so for this second part of the tour we will be visiting the backside of the San Bernardino Mountains. Yes, I am referring to is the part of Lake Arrowhead that is not by the lake, but which include the beautiful and picturesque community of Deer Lodge Park. I grew up in this wonderful little community and it is one of the most beautiful places you could ever live. I guess I am little biased because I grew up here, but it is the ideal place to raise a family, or for a weekend retreat if you just want to get away from the city. We actually get snow in the San Bernardino Mountains during the winter, although the snowfall has been much lower in the last fifteen years. When I was a child it used to snow more frequently, and even as a high school student there were some years that snow days resulted in a school being closed for the week because not all the road could be ploughed. So you thought it did not snow in Southern California? It is time to learn more about the diversity and the beauty of Southern California's many different climates. This tour will be of the backside of the San Bernardino Mountains and will include many beautiful pictures of the area.
Cloudy Skies In The San Bernardino Mountains
The first picture is of the backside of the San Bernardino Mountains looking down towards Hesperia. The cloud cover makes it hard to see down to the valley. The second picture is looking out towards The Pinnacles with clouds in the sky, which is a very popular with rock climbers because there are many large boulders to scale. The Pinnacles are approximately 5,229 feet above sea level, which is about the same altitude as the majority of the Lake Arrowhead region on the backside of the mountain. If you decide to go hiking at The Pinnacles obtain a San Bernardino National Forest Adventure Pass for parking your car because failing to display this pass can result in a ticket.
Visiting the San Bernardino Mountains is great for me because wonderful hiking is always near by, although I am not a rock climber as many of the enthusiasts who visit this region. Taking some picture of the big boulders would make a nice souvenir of your trip to the backside of the San Bernardino Mountains.
After The Grass Valley Fire In 2007
The Grass Valley Fire of 2007 came very close to my parents' house in the San Bernardino Mountains. Luckily it did not jump the street and burn houses in our neighborhood, but it did travel up the canyon and destroyed over 150 homes. Forest fires are very sad, but a reality of life in mountain environments. The tree growth is very dense and dry in some places and naturally occurring forest fires no longer clear out the brush. Thus, when a fire does occur it becomes disastrous and deadly. It is sad when fires happen, but thankfully the firefighters were able to save many homes. The Grass Valley Fire of 2007 is a scary reminder of how nature is still wild and dry conditions result in fires. The fierce winds caused a power line to spark and the surrounding trees caught fire and spread very quickly. There were many fires during that last week in October in 2007, so fire fighters were not able to get to all the homes right away. Many concerned residents stayed behind to protect their homes.
The forest is beginning to grow back and many of the trees actually survived the firestorms. The video below will shows part of the path of the Grass Valley Fire in 2007. The trees are now more sparse because of drought, bark beetles, and fire, but the mountain vegetation is slowing regrowing.
California is known for its beautiful sunsets, which are very spectular with the shilouette of trees and mountains. These pictures of a sunset in the San Bernardino Mountains illustrate the breath taking end to an amazing day. Have fun on your next trip to the San Bernardino Mountains.