An Authentic Taste of the Old West, Overlooking a Peaceful Meadow and Towering Pines at the Sky Ranch.
Includes Continental Breakfast and Home-Baked Goods!
You'll enjoy an abundance of peace and quiet in our Winter Wonderland...just minutes from town...and a short drive from any point in SoCal.
This is a truly unique mountain home, for travelers who want to experience the spirit of a bygone age.
Our carefully restored Gold Rush Cabin sits at 7,000 feet on the private five-acre Sky Ranch, surrounded by towering old Jeffrey pines.
Unlike most homes, it stands alone. Step out on the porch, and you're looking at an alpine meadow which has changed little since the Serrano Indians first arrived here 3,000 years ago. There are no other homes within 100 yards -- and immediately beyond our ranch, you will find the trails of the National Forest and hundreds of square miles of pure nature.
This home is quiet night and day, the perfect break from harried city life. The only sounds you're likely to hear are wind through the trees, and birds which glide from tree to tree. And when the brilliant colors of sunset subside, thousands of stars emerge to remind you why the Milky Way got its name.
The Cabin was built in 1870 to house a family during the days of the local Gold Rush, which featured such legendary characters as "Lucky Baldwin."
After the paydirt ran out, the Gold Rush Cabin became the homestead of a Swiss woman, who bought it for $25 and called it home from 1915 until 1988.
Based on the listings at the Old Houses website, this is the oldest wooden building in Southern California.
Now it's ready for guests.
Note: During ski season, and on holidays, we ask a 2 or 3-night minimum stay.
Tip: See Big Bear Events at Eventbrite
to see what's happening during your stay.
You'd never know by looking at it, but the Cabin has been updated with such "modern luxuries" as electric lighting, a gas heating system, a wood-burning Earth Stove, a vintage propane cookstove, an antique claw-foot tub, a unique and eco-friendly composting toilet, wifi, and (yes) running water.
Even with these amenities, this cabin is the most authentic Western experience that you're going to find without a Time Machine. If you want a relaxing vacation in the woods with a surplus of vintage charm, this is the place.
The living room is unusually spacious for its era, and features a hand-built stone hearth with wood-burning stove. The kitchen's vintage cookstove still works as well as it did in 1930. Of course that's a different experience from a modern appliance, so we also have a microwave, toaster oven, coffeemaker, crockpot, and a small fridge.
The Cabin features one main bedroom, which holds a cozy full-size bed for two topped by a plush quilt. There's also a big upstairs loft, accessed by an old-fashioned ladder staircase, with two more large beds. If you prefer to avoid the stairs, there's a sofabed in the living room. For maximum comfort, we recommend no more than four adults.
The back porch has chairs for relaxing, a charcoal BBQ, a table for dining, and an incredible view of the meadow and forest.
The Gold Rush Cabin offers the best of all seasons. When snow is on the ground, enjoy our perfect sledding hill, snowshoe, or cross-country ski. From Spring to Fall, you can practice yoga, hike the local trails, pitch horseshoes, try your hand at archery, cycle, or just relax on the back porch and enjoy pure nature.
Some guests swear they can feel the spirits of the people who have lived in and around this historic structure. Is it real? You tell us.
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The Gold Rush Cabin is adjacent to hundreds of square miles of forest. The famous Pacific Crest Trail, which stretches 2,663 miles from Canada to Mexico, passes just east of us.
The Gold Rush Cabin is peaceful night and day -- a perfect retreat from the city. Even on big holiday weekends, you'll be completely isolated from traffic and crowds.
In addition to the Cabin's comfortable porches, there is a private deck at the top of the property where you can read...enjoy the sunset...and view a truly stunning panorama of stars in total peace.
You can enjoy the large hot tub, which sits 100 yards away at the edge of the National Forest, offering a commanding view of trees and sky.
In the Summer, the valley offers countless hiking trails, boating and fishing in the lake, 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.
For kids, there's a "fort," swings, and a huge sandbox in a boat!
Inside the Cabin, we offer board games, playing cards, materials for drawing, other arts & crafts, and a collection of vintage music boxes. We also have a nice telescope for stargazing.
It's all here, just a couple hours from the center of the city.
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The nearest stores and restaurants are within five minutes by car. The towns of Big Bear Lake and Fawnskin are 10 to 20 minutes, and offer scores of restaurants, boutiques, and galleries.
There are also two supermarkets, multiple drug stores, and a hospital.
Also 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 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, which offers fishing, all forms of boating, and other water sports.
Stanfield Marsh Boardwalk & Wildlife Preserve, where you can take a stroll above the lake, and have a picnic in the gazebo.
The U.S. Forest Service Discovery Center, which offers various nature programs.
A truly remarkable animal park -- one of only two alpine zoos in the U.S. -- housing grizzlies, wood bison, cougars, timber wolves, eagles, and much more.
Big Bear Valley Museum. Although you are staying in one of the rarest historical homes in California, the museum has some great exhibits, including an example of a stamp mill which was used to crush gold ore in the era when this cabin was built.
Bear Mountain Golf Course. At 7,000 feet, it's an entirely different game!
For those who prefer a true wilderness adventure, the San Bernardino Mountains offer surprisingly spectacular terrain. White men have only ventured into this rugged land for 160 years. One of the youngest mountain ranges in the world (in geological terms), it features scores of steep, challenging peaks, which stretch from the natural hot springs of Deep Creek in the west, to the 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 River offer several wild trout streams, accessible only by foot.
Hundreds of miles of unpaved roads offer every type of off-road experience -- ranging from an easy drive to Pioneertown, to the most radical 4WD trails imaginable.
You'll find it hard to believe that you're less than 100 miles from Downtown Los Angeles!
(See additional info below the Japanese.)
Dogs are always welcome (we have a Lab and a mutt), and the spacious dog corral can be shared. However, we do ask guests to pay an added cleaning fee of $30 per stay per pup. It's tough to remove the fur from everything! ;)
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 just $32.
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 where you can leave both trash and recyclables.
There's a charcoal BBQ grill on the Cabin porch. (And we offer self-lighting charcoal for sale at cost.) A gas BBQ is available at our home (1065 G Lane), which is about 300 feet from the Chalet.
There is easy parking for 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.
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 want to borrow a telescope, just let us know!
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.
The wifi functions very well on most devices in the cabin. If you like movies, we suggest that you bring some DVDs (or borrow some of ours) to play on your laptop.
During ski season, we provide one free self-starting "log" for the fireplace (and we have more for just $5 each). If you didn't bring firewood, you can purchase the wood on the porch for about half of the big city price.
The composting toilet is different (tall!), but easy to like once you learn the many eco advantages. For more info, see the Excel model on the Sun-Mar website.
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, dog corral, horse corral, charcoal BBQ, gas BBQ.
Interaction with Guests
We try to be friendly...and respect your privacy.
This is one of the few rental homes in Big Bear that actually feels like a cabin in the mountains.
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 porch 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 Cabin when you arrive.
Relax...enjoy...look for ghosts!
Great stay, beautiful cabin. Owner was very nice and even brought fresh eggs over from their chickens in the morning. We all want a compost toilet now!
My husband and I had an incredibly relaxing weekend getaway at the Gold Rush cabin! Kiyoe was so warm and welcoming and made us and our pup feel right at home. We loved all the rustic characteristics of the home and as previous reviewers mentioned, the fresh eggs that Kiyoe brought us in the morning were absolutely delicious. We enjoyed watching the sun rise through the trees and enjoying a cup of coffee on the side porch in the morning and exploring the hiking trails behind the house in the daytime. We will absolutely be back!
Mike & Kiyoe were wonderful! Kiyoe was very welcoming and extremely responsive to all of our needs. She even left us fresh eggs from her chickens in the morning! The cabin was sweet, rustic and decorated nicely with all the modern day accommodations you would expect. We will definitely stay again!
I had a wonderful stay at the 'Gold Rush Cabin'! It's rustic but filled with all the amenities anyone would need to feel comfortable; e.g., a warm shower, a comfortable bed, a well appointed kitchen, wi-fi, and a delightful collection of music boxes. Out the front door are miles of wonderful hiking trails leading off in all directions. Kiyoe was the perfect host making me and my dog feel very welcomed.
If you're looking for an authentic, but clean, rustic cabin that is just 2 hours from downtown LA I don't think you could find a better one!
The cabin was cozy and exactly what we were looking for. We loved that there was no TV a few electronics. Though there were ample plugs to charge our devices. Kiyoe was so nice and made sure we felt at home. She even brought us fresh eggs in the morning. It got down to 29 deg F one night but we were cozy following her heater instructions. We usually camp when we can but this was a welcome change and made relaxing much easier. I left an expensive coat there and kiyoke mailed it to me at no cost. I received it 2 days later! This is a great place to stay. You can really feel at home and a great way to escape the city life
My husband and I are both law students and decided last minute to get away to decompress for the weekend. It was very last minute, but Mike was very accommodating and let us stay at his cozy little rustic cabin. Kiyoe was a wonderful host! We had fresh eggs from their chickens, bagels, cookies, and other goodies in the fridge when we arrived. The cabin was clean, cozy, and felt like our home away from home. We had a wonderful time and would definitely recommend staying here!
Joe and I were warmly welcomed to The Gold Rush Cabin! Kiyoe was a phenomenal host and showed us around the cabin even though we arrived later than planned. Fresh eggs from her very own chickens (which were delicious btw), cookies, bagels, and a bottle of champagne greeted us in the kitchen. The manual provided was so thorough and helpful! And Kiyoe herself was so sweet and accommodating. She insisted that we let her know whenever we needed anything or had any questions. The only time we did have an issue was when the power in the bathroom went out. I texted her asking where the fuse box was for the bathroom and she asked if she could come over. She was there within minutes and we sorted it all out with ease. She was the perfect host. We felt like we were totally alone in our little cabin oasis in the middle of the woods and yet if we needed help with anything, it was just minutes away! I definitely recommend this quaint, old fashioned cabin for an intimate romantic getaway. I love that there's no TV! Hanging out around the fire with Joe, reading side by side on the deck, and hiking through the trees behind the cabin made for the perfect weekend. (The hot tub wasn't too shabby either!!) The Gold Rush Cabin will always hold a special place in my heart. I arrived with a boyfriend and left with a fiancé. This remote, off the beaten path cabin in the woods set the scene for a beautiful and memorable engagement. We couldn't have asked for a better host during this special weekend. I'll always have the most wonderful memories of this place. It started snowing on our last day there and the cabin became a winter wonderland right out of a Robert Frost poem. Joe and I look forward to returning in the future to the cabin where it all began. :)
P.S. The water pressure in the shower was on point! Pleasantly surprising for the oldest wooden structure in So Cal!
- Molly & Joe
This host has 277 reviews for other properties.View Other Reviews
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。