12 Of The Very Best Hikes in Lake Arrowhead, California

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Traverse the picturesque landscape of Lake Arrowhead as you hike through woodlands and creek beds. These are 12 of the best hikes in Lake Arrowhead, California.

Lake Arrowhead offers exquisite views and the opportunity to walk, run, and hike some of the best trails in the area. Whether you’re traipsing through woodlands, wandering down and around the low-lying ridges, or over the many creek beds, you’re sure to get your fill of nature and fresh air. 

As you enjoy nature and the beautiful scenery around you, make sure you stop and take in the views – some trails look out over the lake below, providing the best vantage point of the area.

Ranging from easy to moderate, there is a wide selection of hiking trails in Lake Arrowhead to choose from depending on your age, skill level, as well as the time of year. 

Some of the routes in the area are also suitable for mountain biking and trail running, allowing you a few choices when you set out on your adventures. If you’re visiting in the wintertime, a few trails in the area allow for snowshoeing and even cross-country skiing, so make sure you come prepared.

Here is a selection of 12 of the best hikes in Lake Arrowhead to choose from for your next trip to the San Bernardino Mountains in California!

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5 Must-Have Hiking Essentials To Pack For Your Lake Arrowhead Hiking Adventure! 

  1. A hiking day backpack
  2. Comfy pair of men’s boots, or woman’s hiking boots
  3. Hiking water bottle for hydration
  4. A cozy men’s and woman’s windbreaker for those gusty summits
  5. A set of hiking poles

12 Top Lake Arrowhead Hikes & Trails

1.    Arrowhead Pinnacles Trail

Arrowhead Pinnacles Trail - © Image by Miko Miskiewicz by Alltrails
Pinnacles Trail © Image by Miko Miskiewicz from Alltrails
  • Location: The Pinnacles Trail Parking, CA-173, Lake Arrowhead, California
  • Difficulty: Moderate
  • Distance: 4.6-miles 
  • Type: Out and back

Considered moderately difficult, the Arrowhead Pinnacles Trail will take you about two-and-a-half hours to complete. Once you’ve completed a challenging little climb at the beginning of the trail, you’ll be able to enjoy the rest of the route and take in the panoramic views when you reach the top.

To take advantage of the incredible views which include a view of Silverwood Lake, you will be required a fair bit of scrambling over boulders and the like. 

This is one of the most popular Lake Arrowhead trails, and you’re likely to encounter other hikers and even horse riders while you’re out and about. 

Note that while this hike is certainly worth doing, it isn’t particularly well marked, so be sure to plan your route before you set out and perhaps consider taking a GPS together with a downloaded map too.

The hike is also fairly exposed, so be sure to wear sunscreen and water to stay hydrated, and try to avoid extremely hot days. 

Be sure to check out the trail map here: Arrowhead Pinnacles Trail Map

2.    Will Abell Memorial Trail

Will Abell Memorial Trail © Image by Andrew Snyder from Alltrails
Will Abell Memorial Trail © Image by Andrew Snyder from Alltrails
  • Location: Memorial Ridge, Lake Arrowhead, California
  • Difficulty: Easy to moderate
  • Distance: 1.9-mile
  • Type: Loop

While this short 1.9-mile loop hike will only take you about an hour, it’s considered easy to moderate, depending, perhaps, on your ability. It includes a fair bit of elevation, which explains the difficulty of the trail. 

Regardless, the Will Abel Memorial Trail is well worth a visit and offers nature enthusiasts lush greenery, sightings of wildlife, and the opportunity to really feel as though you’re away from the hustle and bustle of city life.

You’ll be able to enjoy truly picturesque views of Lake Arrowhead in the distance from a few different viewpoints, so be sure to keep an eye out for signs that will indicate where you need to go.

This easy hike makes for a great family day out and should be fine for children too. Even a man’s best friend is allowed to join the family for a day hike, as long as dogs are kept on a leash. 

Check out the trail map here: Will Abell Memorial Trail

3.    North Shore Recreational Trail

North Shore National Recretional Trail © Image by Andrew Vosseler from Alltrails
North Shore National Recretional Trail © Image by Andrew Vosseler from Alltrails
  • Location: 40971 North Shore Drive, Highway 38, Lake Arrowhead, California
  • Difficulty: Moderate
  • Distance: 1.9-miles
  • Type: Out and back

Enjoy this moderately difficult trail with the whole family – just over three miles long, it’ll take you about an hour and 20 minutes. Enjoy the scenery as you work your way through the San Bernardino Forest – its dense, lush landscape will allow you to escape from reality and enjoy a short and sweet adventure into the wilderness.

The trailhead kicks off right behind the North Shore Campground. This is located off Highway 173 on Hospital Road. 

View the trail map here: North Shore Recreational Trail

4.    Little Bear Creek Trail – Hiking in Lake Arrowhead

Little Bear Creek Trail © Image by David Farris from Alltrails
Little Bear Creek Trail © Image by David Farris from Alltrails
  • Location: Little Bear Creek Road, Lake Arrowhead, California
  • Difficulty: Easy
  • Distance: 4 miles 
  • Type: Out and back

One of the less crowded, more isolated routes in the area, the Little Bear Creek Trail is great for a relaxed hike that should take around 2 hours to complete. 

You’re unlikely to encounter many other hikers along the path, making it a great place to go if you’re looking for some much-needed alone time out in nature.

It’s also appropriate for camping and dogs are welcome in the area too – though they need to be on leashes most of the time, there are also sections where you can let them roam freely, as long as you’re aware of other people and animals around you. 

Do take note that there is a lot of sun exposure on this hike and you’re bound to encounter some overgrown sections, so be sure to come prepared with appropriate hiking gear for a comfortable hike. 

If you’re lucky, you’ll see lots of flowers and other vegetation along the trail as you make your way down to the little creek.

Be sure to check out the trail map here: Little Bear Creek Trail

5.    Nature Loop in Lake Gregory Regional Park

Lake Gregory © Image by Bernard Tolentino from Alltrails
Lake Gregory © Image by Bernard Tolentino from Alltrails
  • Location: 24171 Lake Drive, Crestline, Lake Gregory Regional Park, California
  • Difficulty: Easy
  • Distance: 2.3-miles
  • Type: Loop

If you’re looking for hikes near Lake Arrowhead and you enjoy the scenery that includes bodies of water such as dams, rivers, creeks, and lakes, then you’re sure to enjoy the Nature Loop in Lake Gregory Regional Park (Lake Gregory Trail). 

It’s a 43-minute round trip, and the hike will allow you to enjoy the lovely scenery and an easy walk.

Once you reach the lake, you can spend some time hanging out there – fishing and bird watching are popular activities and coupled with hiking make the most of these stunning surroundings. 

If you’d really like to have a nice day out, take along a picnic and a pair of binoculars so you can hang out for the day. Dogs are allowed along too, but as with many hikes in the area, should remain on a leash. 

Check out the trail map here: Lake Gregory Trail

6.    Children’s Forest Exploration Trail

  • Location: State Highway 18, Running Springs, Lake Arrowhead, California
  • Difficulty: Easy
  • Distance: 9-miles
  • Type: Out and back

Found within the San Bernardino National Forest, this trail is perfect for families looking to have an active day out during the summertime if you’re looking for Lake Arrowhead hikes. It’s a 9-mile out-and-back hiking trail that was designed by a team of US Forest Service specialists, as well as in collaboration with children.

The route includes what is known as the Interpretive Trail Loop – there are interpretive panels along this 0.75-mile stretch of the trail making for a fun, different experience for all. During the wintertime, the trail is ideal for snowshoeing and cross-country skiing after there’s been significant snowfall.

View the trail map here: Children’s Forest Exploration Trail

7.    Fisherman’s Camp Trail

Fisherman’s Camp Trail © Image by Noelle Wako from Alltrails
Fisherman’s Camp Trail © Image by Noelle Wako from Alltrails
  • Location: Tenaja Road, Tenaja Canyon, Lake Arrowhead, California
  • Difficulty: Moderate
  • Distance: 3-miles
  • Type: Out and back

If you’re looking for a good place for a moderately challenging hike and a pretty campsite to rest your head in the evening, Fisherman’s Camp Trail may be the one for you. About three miles long, this trail will take you out near Lake Elsinore where you can enjoy the beauty of the backcountry and have a good time in the middle of nowhere.

The route is well maintained and well-marked, making it one of the best hikes in Lake Arrowhead. However, most of the trail is exposed, so make sure you’re prepared to be out in the sun while you’re hiking. If you plan on staying at the campsite, make sure you’re prepared for mosquitoes and reserve ahead of time too.

Be sure to check out the trail map here: Fisherman’s Camp Trail

8.    Metate Trail

Metate Trail © Image by Robert Wagonis from Alltrails
Metate Trail © Image by Robert Wagonis from Alltrails
  • Location: Highway 173, Lake Arrowhead, California
  • Difficulty: Easy
  • Distance: 2-miles
  • Type: Out and back

The perfect route to try out at any time of the day, the Metate Trail is a two-mile-long route that’ll lead you through some interesting sites that hark back to the area’s indigenous history. 

Also referred to as the Indian Rock Trail, you’ll encounter some pretty interesting rock formations that are known to have been frequented by the Serrano Indians and used to grind acorns to make flour, thus resulting in these rocks having holes in them. 

The Metate Trail is mostly flat, but it does include a little bit of a slope, adding a small challenge to an otherwise easy trail. The route is family-friendly and is a great choice if you’re looking for easy hikes in Lake Arrowhead.

Check out the trail map here: Metate Trail

9.    Little Green Valley Trail

Little Green Valley Trail © Image by Rachel Sison from Alltrails
Little Green Valley Trail © Image by Rachel Sison from Alltrails
  • Location: Green Valley Lake Road, Green Valley Lake, California
  • Difficulty: Moderate
  • Distance: 2.4-miles
  • Type: Loop

The Little Green Valley Trail is a great choice if you’d like to enjoy some really beautiful views. These include some stunning views of Apple Valley and Green Valley Lake if you head out a little further along to the vantage point. 

A large portion of the route will have you surrounded by trees and greenery, and you’ll be able to enjoy a lovely large, open meadow. Beautiful and moderately difficult, this is another one of the best hikes in Lake Arrowhead to consider.

About an hour and 20 minutes long, this route is considered moderately difficult, and may not be well-suited for the very young or hikers with mobility issues. 

It’s ideal if you’d like to bring your furry friend with you for the adventure, or want to embark on a spot of mountain biking, and you’re unlikely to see too many other hikers on the trail. 

The fern meadow is particularly pretty, and the route includes a few areas that require a good climb, so you’ll certainly get some good exercise if that’s what you’re hoping for.

View the trail map here: Little Green Valley Trail

10. Heart Rock Trail

Heart Rock Trail © Image by LA from Alltrails
Heart Rock Trail © Image by LA from Alltrails
  • Location: Route 138, San Bernardino National Forest, Crestline, California
  • Difficulty: Moderate
  • Distance: 1.3-miles
  • Type: Loop

Falling on the easier side of moderate, the Heart Rock Trail is a sweet and fun trail for both beginners and more experienced hikers that should take around 40 mins to complete. As one of the easier and best hikes Lake Arrowhead has to offer, it is often quite a busy trail, so it’s best to do this one outside of peak times. 

Luckily though, this hike is picturesque all year round and magical regardless of whether there’s a bit of snow or in full summer glory!

Make sure to keep an eye out for the heart rock, after which this hiking route is named. The trail starts on a paved road and ends on a rocky trail, so bear this in mind when you’re deciding which way you’d like to do the loop.

Note, however, that during the summertime, you’re likely to experience a high volume of gnats (irritating bugs), so if this is something that would bother you, you may prefer to choose a different hiking trail while you’re in the Lake Arrowhead area.

Be sure to check out the trail map here: Heart Rock Trail

11. Deep Creek Hot Springs Trail

Deep Creek Hot Springs Trail © Image by Janice Acevedo from Alltrails
Deep Creek Hot Springs Trail © Image by Janice Acevedo from Alltrails
  • Location: Pacific Crest Trail, Apple Valley, California
  • Difficulty: Challenging
  • Distance: 3.6-miles
  • Type: Out and back

If you’re looking for a Lake Arrowhead hiking trail that is going to challenge you, then Deep Creek Hot Springs Trail is sure to be right up your alley. This hike is both difficult as well as beautiful.

Do not be fooled by the downhill beginning – traversing back up the path on the way back is sure to be a tiring adventure for even the most experienced hikers.

This hike involves about two hours of walking time which doesn’t seem too bad, but make sure you don’t do it during the heat of the day as that is sure to make things a lot more difficult. 

Luckily, there are several beautiful and convenient places to swim and ample coverage at the creek, so be prepared when you do this trail, and don’t forget to have a dip when you need a break and would like to cool off.

Due to the steep incline on the way back, be sure to wear decent hiking boots and take lots of water to stay hydrated, especially on the way up!

Check out the trail map here: Deep Creek Hot Springs Trail

12. Crafts Peak Trail

Crafts Peak Trail © Image by Sunny Trichanh from Alltrails
Crafts Peak Trail © Image by Sunny Trichanh from Alltrails
  • Location: 33800 Green Valley Lake Road, Green Valley Lake, California
  • Difficulty: Moderate
  • Distance: 7.2-miles
  • Type: Out and back

The Crafts Peak Trail is a beautiful route, but it’s a reasonably long one, so don’t be fooled by this hike being noted as only moderately difficult. This out-and-back trail is estimated to take about three hours and 45 minutes on average, covering a distance of just under seven and a half miles, so make sure you’re prepared for the length of this hike. 

The actual trail, however, isn’t too difficult to navigate as the first half is more of a jeep track and the second half is a footpath – the second half is rather steep though, and that may require scrambling over some rocks.

However, having said that, Crafts Peak Trail is worth every step. During your journey, you’ll be surrounded by lush trees and interesting rock formations making for beautiful views and intriguing terrain. You’ll also be lucky enough to enjoy exquisite views as you hike, looking out over Lake Arrowhead and the high desert area.

Passing through the San Bernardino Forest, this trail is popular for not only hiking but horse riding and camping too. If you have dogs that enjoy a good adventure, this would be a great trail for them too – although they should be kept on a leash, especially in the busier areas, there are other spots where they are free to roam off-leash too.

View the trail map here: Crafts Peak Trail

12 Of the Very Best Hikes in Lake Arrowhead, CA! Don’t miss out on these awesome hiking trails in Lake Arrowhead. Easy hikes near Lake Arrowhead, Lake Arrowhead hikes, hiking in Lake Arrowhead, Lake Arrowhead trails.
12 Of the Very Best Hikes in Lake Arrowhead, CA! Don’t miss out on these awesome hiking trails in Lake Arrowhead. Easy hikes near Lake Arrowhead, Lake Arrowhead hikes, hiking in Lake Arrowhead, Lake Arrowhead trails.
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