Big Bear Lake is a small city located along the southern shore of Big Bear Lake in San Bernardino County, California. The city lies about 40 kilometres northeast of the City of San Bernardino and directly west of Big Bear City. Big Bear Lake sits at a high elevation of 6,752 feet (2,058 metres) and has a population of 5,279 living on its 16.64 square kilometres area.
The climate of Big Bear Lake is categorized as the warm-summer Mediterranean bordering humid continental. Big Bear Lake has four well-developed seasons where summers are warm, dry, and mostly clear while winters are cold, snowy, and partly cloudy. The coldest month in the region in February, with average temperatures of 34.7 degrees Fahrenheit (1.5 degrees Celsius). On the other hand, the hottest month in the city in July, with average temperatures hovering around 65.1 degrees Fahrenheit (18.4 degrees Celsius).
Due to the city’s high elevation, Big Bear Lake receives more snowfall than most parts of California. It snows in Big Bear Lake in winter, and the city records an annual snow accumulation of 31.22 inches (793 millimetres) after 16.1 snowfall days. Snowfall at the lake level is lower than at the forested ridges bordering the lake. In a typical season, snowfall at the lake level averages 30 inches (702 millimetres) but can reach upwards of 100 inches (2,500 millimetres) at elevations above 8,000 feet (2,400 metres).
Snowfall months in Big Bear Lake
Big Bear Lake records snowfall for seven months in a calendar year. The city sees snowfall from January through to May and in November and December. Here is a closer look at the city’s snowy months.
Snow in November
November marks the end of the autumn season in Big Bear Lake. As the city starts to transition into winter, temperatures begin to decrease from those recorded in October. In November, temperatures in Big Bear Lake range from highs of 60.8 degrees Fahrenheit (16 degrees Celsius) to lows of 43.7 degrees Fahrenheit (6.5 degrees Celsius). November is also the first month of snowfall in Big Bear Lake, and the city records a snow accumulation of 4.53 inches (115 millimetres) after 1.2 snowfall days.
Snow in December
December, the first month of winter in Big Bear Lake, is a month of cool temperatures and heavy snowfall. Temperatures in the city are usually in the mild range and vary from highs of 52.5 degrees Fahrenheit (11.4 degrees Celsius) to lows of 37.2 degrees Fahrenheit (2.9 degrees Celsius). December is the month of most snowfall in Big Bear Lake, with the city recording a snow accumulation of 6.54 inches (166 millimetres) after 2.9 snowfall days.
Snow in January
January is another mild month in Big Bear Lake, with the weather conditions recorded in December persisting throughout the month. The temperatures recorded in the city are the same as those seen in December and range from highs of 54.5 degrees Fahrenheit (12.5 degrees Celsius) to lows of 38.8 degrees Fahrenheit (3.8 degrees Celsius). Big Bear Lake witnesses snowfall for 2.2 days during the month and records a snow accumulation of 2.28 inches (58 millimetres).
Snow in February
February is usually the last month of winter in Big Bear Lake. It is another fresh month in the city, punctuated by mild temperatures and moderate snowfall. During the month, temperatures in Big Bear Lake vary from highs of 55 degrees Fahrenheit (12.8 degrees Celsius) to lows of 39.2 degrees Fahrenheit (4 degrees Celsius). Snowfall is recorded in Big Bear Lake for 3.9 days in February, and the snow aggregates to a depth of 4.84 inches (123 millimetres).
Snow in March
March marks the first month of spring in Big Bear Lake. Temperatures across the city are moderate and slightly higher than the winter temperatures recorded in February. During the month, Big Bear Lake records average temperatures ranging from highs of 60.6 degrees Fahrenheit (15.9 degrees Celsius) to lows of 42.3 degrees Fahrenheit (5.7 degrees Celsius). The city records a snow accumulation of 5.59 inches (142 millimetres) after 3.1 snowfall days in March.
Snow in April
April, the heart of the spring season in Big Bear Lake, is an enjoyable month in the city. Average temperatures recorded in the city for the month range from highs of 66.6 degrees Fahrenheit (19.2 degrees Celsius) to lows of 45.9 degrees Fahrenheit (7.7 degrees Celsius). It snows in Big Bear Lake for 1.8 days in April, and the snow accumulates up to a depth of 6.42 inches (163 millimetres).
Snow in May
May is the last month of spring and snowfall in Big Bear Lake. Average temperatures in the city for the month are pleasantly warm and vary from highs of 73 degrees Fahrenheit (22.8 degrees Celsius) to lows of 51.1 degrees Fahrenheit (10.6 degrees Celsius). Big Bear Lake records a snow accumulation of 1.02 inches (26 millimetres) in May after 1 snowfall day.