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Entire cabin hosted by Mike
4 guests2 bedrooms3 beds1 bath
Entire home
You’ll have the cabin to yourself.
Great location
95% of recent guests gave the location a 5-star rating.
Great check-in experience
90% of recent guests gave the check-in process a 5-star rating.
Great communication
95% of recent guests rated Mike 5-star in communication.
An Authentic Taste of the Old West, Overlooking a Peaceful Meadow and Towering Pines at the Sky Ranch.

The space
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, surrounded by towering old Jeffrey pines. While nearly all the other homes in Big Bear Valley are packed tightly together, as soon as you turn into our private five-acre Sky Ranch, you can discover true seclusion.

Step out onto the broad wooden porch of the Cabin, 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 300 feet -- and immediately adjacent to our ranch, you'll find the trails of the National Forest, winding through 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 of 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.

According to the listings at the Old Houses website, this appears to be the oldest wooden building in Southern California.

Now it's ready for guests.

* Yes, dogs can come too! See “Useful Notes” for details.
* During holidays, we often ask a 3-night minimum stay.
* For special events, see calendar at Big Bear website.

You'd never know by looking at it, but the Cabin has been updated with such "modern luxuries" as electric lighting, a gas-fired heater, 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 and wood-burning fireplace. 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 on the first floor, 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 meadow, forest, and sky.

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.

* * *

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.

You can enjoy a large hot tub, which sits 100 yards away at the very 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. They're also welcome to help feed the chickens. That's always a big hit!

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 telescope for stargazing.

It's all waiting for you, just a couple hours from the center of the city.

* * *

About Town:

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 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.

> 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're staying in one of the rarest historical homes in California, the museum has some great exhibits as well, 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. While the Serranos have called these mountains home for many centuries, Europeans didn't venture into this rugged land till 165 years ago. It's 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 the 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.

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 Cabin is right in the middle of the major routes.

After a day here, you may find it hard to believe that you're just 100 miles (and perhaps a century) away from Downtown Los Angeles.


(See additional info below the Japanese.)




Useful Notes:

Re cleaning this year, we use AirBnB’s protocol as a guideline, plus more. The most important thing is leaving extra days between guests to fully ventilate the home. Contact surfaces get sterilized. Of course all sheets and towels are washed. And hot tub chlorine is monitored frequently.

Mother Nature recently brought an extraordinary proliferation of moths. They come and go, so we can't predict conditions during your stay.  They're harmless, of course, but do bother some city folks. Moths or no, you can explore the trails, and just enjoy all the nature.

Many hosts vary rates depending on occupancy. To keep rates affordable for couples, our basic rates are for the first two people. To see the correct rate, be sure to select the correct number of adults and kids.

Dogs are always welcome. Just let us know what breed/s, and how many. A spacious dog corral is available. We do ask guests to pay an added fee of $25 per pup per day. Pets aren't allowed on our bed coverings or furniture. If yours will climb up, please bring a clean sheet or blanket for them to lie on.

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 take 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. (No lighter fluid allowed!) A gas BBQ is available at our home (1065 G Lane), which is about 500 feet away.

We also offer bundles of firewood at our cost.

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 Cabin. The AT&T and T-Mobile networks still do not cover this area, however the wifi enables calls/texts on most phones, plus Netflix, Skype, and similar apps. There's a landline available if you require 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 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 well on most devices in the cabin. If you like movies, we have a small Smart TV in the loft with a DVD player. You may want to bring some DVDs for that player (or to play on your laptop).

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 that's next to the hearth for less than the big city price.

The toilet is different (tall!), but saves a great deal of water and is easy to like once you learn the eco advantages.

Sorry, outdoor fires are illegal, except in the steel fireplace behind the main house.

Tip: AirBnB does not have great seasonal pricing
tools, 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.

Guest access
Hot tub, hiking and mountain bike trails, snowshoes, sleds, stargazing deck and telescope, dog corral, horse corral, charcoal BBQ.

Other things to note
Hot tub is shared with one other cabin. If you like, we will reserve a time for your exclusive use.
An Authentic Taste of the Old West, Overlooking a Peaceful Meadow and Towering Pines at the Sky Ranch.

The space
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, surrounded by towering old Jeffrey pines. While nearly all the other homes in Big Bear Valley are packed tight…

Sleeping arrangements

Bedroom 1
1 double bed
Bedroom 2
1 queen bed, 1 double bed


Free parking on premises
Hot tub
Hair dryer
Laptop-friendly workspace
Indoor fireplace

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4.87 out of 5 stars from 356 reviews
4.87 (356 reviews)



Big Bear City, California, United States

This is one of the few rental homes in Big Bear that actually feels like a cabin in the mountains.

Hosted by Mike

Joined in March 2012
  • 1093 Reviews
  • Identity verified
Mike is a Californian who has lived in Europe and Japan. A graduate of UCLA, he’s now mostly retired, with a little consulting on the side. For fun, he likes travel, live music, basketball, volleyball, skiing, and motorcycling.
During your stay
We try to be friendly...and respect your privacy.
  • Languages: English, 日本語
  • Response rate: 100%
  • Response time: within a few hours
To protect your payment, never transfer money or communicate outside of the Airbnb website or app.

Things to know

House rules
Check-in: After 4:00 PM
Checkout: 12:00 PM
No smoking
No parties or events
Pets are allowed
Safety & Property
Carbon monoxide alarm
Smoke alarm
Security Deposit - if you damage the home, you may be charged up to $200