About this listing
Enjoy a Natural Mountain Experience in Our Vintage Chalet on the 5-Acre Sky Ranch. Open Meadow, National Forest, Trails at Your Door.
The Chalet is a true piece of art, for people who want a mountain holiday that's out of the ordinary.
This home was literally built by hand in the classic Swiss style, by a family of professional artisans. Special touches are visible everywhere, from floors of solid oak two inches thick, to custom benches and cabinets, to hand-painted artwork on beams and railings. Although the home is only 45 years old, its craftsmanship derives directly from centuries of European tradition.
The Chalet is surrounded by old-growth Jeffrey pine trees over 100 feet tall. It overlooks an alpine meadow, which has changed little since the Serrano Indians first arrived here 3,000 years ago. And there is nothing to the south and west but miles of trees and trails in the San Bernardino National Forest.
Surprisingly, the vast majority of homes in Big Bear Valley are packed tightly together. But when you turn into our private five-acre Sky Ranch, you leave tract homes behind, and the forest becomes your back yard.
Located in pristine forest at 7,000 feet, the Chalet is quiet night and day. The nearest neighbor (our home) is 100 yards away. It's a perfect spot to take a break from city life, with no concerns about traffic or noise...just pure tranquility.
As you relax on the deck, the only sounds you're likely to hear are wind through the trees, and the songs of birds who come to drink natural spring water from our pond.
If you want a relaxing holiday retreat in the woods, in a home overflowing with warmth and tradition, this is your destination.
Note: During the major holidays, we
often ask a 3-night minimum stay.
Tip: See Big Bear Events at Eventbrite
to see what's happening in town.
The Chalet is the ideal gateway to hiking, running, biking, horseback riding, sledding, snowshoeing, and cross-country skiing. Established hiking paths literally begin at your back door, and the 2,663-mile Pacific Crest Trail passes nearby.
Inside the Chalet, you will enjoy a spacious living room with wood-burning fireplace, an adjoining formal dining room, plus a large deck with BBQ which overlooks the pond, tall poplars, a broad meadow, and the towering pines. Weddings have been held in the meadow, which still shows evidence of its heritage as a summertime camp for the native Serranos.
The kitchen is roomy and equipped with full-size appliances (including modern refrigerator, stove, oven, and dishwasher) plus all the cooking gear you need to create memorable meals (even a crockpot). If you don't see what you want, just talk to Kay!
The home features two extra-large bedrooms, each of which holds a large bed for two. Each bedroom has a full attached bathroom, and all towels as well as bedding are provided.
One of our bedrooms is actually double the normal size, and includes a set of bunk beds.
For a little creative work, or just meditation, our den features two vintage desks, and 180-degree views of the forest and our artesian spring.
The living room offers a queen-size fold-out bed, and either the living room or den can accommodate a queen airbed. For maximum comfort, we recommend no more than eight adults in the Chalet.
In back, there's a large veranda, with relaxing chairs and a stunning panorama of tall pines.
The large hot tub is literally next to the forest, just a few steps from the veranda. It's a wonderful spot to relax and reacquaint yourself with nature, including an array of stars that you may have forgotten.
We have an authentic horseshoes course, an area for archery, and a telescope for stargazing.
For kids, there's a "fort," swings, a sandbox in a boat, and chickens to feed. (That's always a big hit!)
In the Summer, the valley offers countless hiking trails, boating and fishing, mountain and road biking, horseback riding, golf, tennis, ziplining, the zoo, and many other outdoor activities. In Winter, there's skiing/boarding, snowshoeing, sledding, and more.
Inside the Chalet, we offer lots of board games, playing cards, materials for drawing, other arts & crafts, vintage music boxes -- even an electric organ!
The private Star Deck at the top of the property is a peaceful spot to read...enjoy the sunset...and view a truly stunning panorama of the heavens at night.
Welcome to the Chalet!
* * *
The nearest stores and restaurants are within five minutes by car. The towns of Big Bear Lake and Fawnskin are 10 to 20 minutes away, and offer scores of restaurants, boutiques, and galleries.
There are also two supermarkets, multiple drug stores, and a hospital.
Within 15 minutes by car are...
> Two ski and snowboard resorts, Snow Summit and Bear Mountain, offering 26 lifts and 55 runs. There are excellent ski schools and family areas, as well as serious terrain parks and an Olympic-size halfpipe. This is where Shaun White learned to fly!
> Big Bear's famous alpine lake, with fishing, kayaking, sailing, and other water sports.
> A truly remarkable animal park -- one of only two alpine zoos in the U.S. -- housing grizzlies, wood bison, cougars, timber wolves, bobcats, eagles, and much more.
> Stanfield Marsh Boardwalk & Wildlife Preserve, where you can stroll the boardwalk, have a picnic in the gazebo, or just sit and enjoy the lake and mountain views.
> The U.S. Forest Service Discovery Center, which offers a variety of nature programs.
> Big Bear Valley Museum. Augment your stay in the vintage Chalet by viewing memorable exhibits such as the stamp mill, used to crush gold ore in the era when the Sky Ranch was first homesteaded.
> Bear Mountain Golf Course. At 7,000 feet, it's an entirely different game.
For those seeking a true wilderness adventure...
The San Bernardino Mountains offer surprisingly spectacular terrain. Although the Serranos have called these mountains home for many centuries, Europeans did not venture into this rugged land till just 165 years ago. This is one of the youngest mountain ranges in the world (in geological terms) and features scores of steep, challenging peaks, which stretch from the natural hot springs of Deep Creek in the west, to huge Yucca forests in the east.
11,500-foot Mount San Gorgonio, named by Spanish missionaries in the early 17th century, is at the center of the first designated wilderness area in America. Also known as "Old Greyback," San Gorgonio and 11 surrounding peaks over 10,000 feet are home to an extremely rare herd of bighorn sheep.
The headwaters of the Santa Ana and Mojave rivers offer premier wild trout streams such as Bear Creek, accessible only by foot. Guides are available to aid your quest for the rainbows and browns, some over 18 inches.
Hundreds of miles of unpaved National Forest roads offer every type of off-road experience -- ranging from an easy drive to Pioneertown, to the most radical 4WD trails imaginable (11 Difficults, six Most Difficults). The Chalet is right in the middle of the major routes, including 3N03 Smarts Ranch, 3N16 Holcomb Valley, 2N02 Burns Canyon, 2N01 Broom Flats, 1N01 Pipes Canyon, 2N93 Wildhorse Meadows, 2N10 Skyline, 1N54 Clarks Grade, and many more.
It's all waiting for you, just a couple hours from the center of the city.
(Additional info below Japanese copy.)
Dogs are always welcome. We have two friendly Lab and Boxer mutts, and the spacious dog corral can be shared. However, we do ask guests to pay an added fee of $25 per pup per day. We recommend that you bring his/her favorite bed or blanket. It calms your pet, and helps us keep the fee as low as possible.
Unfortunately, we can't accept cats. There are simply too many people who are allergic (including members of our family).
Check-in time is 4 p.m., and check-out is 12 noon. If the calendar is open, you can add a block of four hours before or after the standard stay for a modest charge.
A MAJOR advantage over many rental homes: You do not have to cart your trash and recyclables in your car when you leave. (This is a surprisingly common and annoying requirement!) We provide cans to leave your trash and recyclables right on the porch.
If your group is 5--7 people, we ask $20 more for the added cleaning that's required. For 8+, it's $30 extra.
There's a charcoal BBQ grill on the Chalet deck, and we have self-lighting charcoal for sale at cost. (No lighter fluid allowed!) A gas BBQ is available at our home (1065 G Lane), which is about 300 feet from the Chalet.
We also offer bundles of firewood at cost.
There is easy parking for virtually any number of cars. RVs and trailers are no problem either.
Cell phones on Verizon and Sprint will have coverage at the Chalet, however the AT&T and T-Mobile networks still do not cover this neighborhood. Of course the wifi enables streaming and similar activities. There's a landline available if you need one.
The public bus stop is a short walk. Surprisingly, it is possible to take public transit from any train station in SoCal all the way to our bus stop. Cheaper than driving, and no worries about weather. Ask us for details.
If you're bringing kids, let us know the ages. You may get a discount. :)
For equestrians, we have a two-acre horse corral, plus hay barn and covered stall. No charge for guests.
If you want to borrow a telescope, just let us know!
During ski season, we provide one free self-starting "log" for the fireplace (and we have more, which we provide at our cost). If you didn't bring firewood, you can purchase the wood on the porch for less than the big city price.
We love hosting weddings -- and the huge pine in the middle of our sloping meadow offers an amazing altar! (see photo.) If you appreciate nature, this is the ideal place to begin married life.
Tip: AirBnB does not have seasonal pricing,
so if you're booking far in advance, you may
not see correct rates. Just check with us. ;)
Legal Note: Upon booking, you will gain access to the House Manual, which includes the rental contract for your stay. Be sure to familiarize yourself with all terms in advance.
Hot tub, stargazing deck and telescope, hiking and mountain bike trails, USFS Adventure Pass, sleds, archery set, dog corral, horse corral, charcoal BBQ, gas BBQ.
The public bus stop is a short walk. Surprisingly, it is possible to take public transit from any train station in SoCal all the way to our bus stop. Cheaper than driving, and no worries about weather. Ask us for details!
No smoking indoors. (Smoking on balcony OK, but PLEASE do not drop ashes or butts on the ground.)
Please see detailed info in the "House Manual." It's online at AirBnB, and there will be a copy in the Chalet when you arrive.
Mike is an American who has lived in Europe and Japan. A graduate of UCLA, he also works in L.A. as an international marketing consultant. For fun, he likes basketball, tennis, volleyball, hiking, skiing, cycling, and motorcycling.
Kiyoe (Kay) is a Japanese national. For fun, she likes running, hiking, tennis, and clogging. 日本の”おもてなし”をモットーにしています。どうぞ日本語でお気軽にお問い合わせください。お待ちしています。