Bear Creek Trail
ElevationAscent: 4,501' 1,372 m
Descent: -112' -34 m
High: 8,983' 2,738 m
Low: 4,595' 1,400 m
GradeAvg Grade: 13% (7°)
Max Grade: 48% (26°)
Popular runs nearby
Bear Creek Trail
5.0 mi 8.0 km • Point to Point • 3,642 ft Ascent 1110.11 m Ascent
The Needles Lookout
9.9 mi 16.0 km • Out and Back • 1,659 ft Ascent 505.69 m Ascent
Kern River Upper to Rincon Trail
13.4 mi 21.5 km • Out and Back • 1,831 ft Ascent 558.05 m Ascent
Manter Meadow Loop
9.3 mi 15.0 km • Loop • 1,396 ft Ascent 425.35 m Ascent
Heart of the Domelands
28.3 mi 45.6 km • Point to Point • 3,737 ft Ascent 1139.09 m Ascent
Cottonwood Pass Trail to Whitney Portal
38.7 mi 62.3 km • Point to Point • 7,417 ft Ascent 2260.62 m Ascent
Navigate on-trail with our free app
“A steep and rewarding trail that passes through groves of sequoias to climb to the top of Slate Mountain.”— Mario Zamora
Right from the start, the climb is steep (15+ degrees). The trail is well kept, but there are branches and obstacles along the way including fallen trees that you'll navigate over or around. You may lose sight of a clear trail along the way, but a clear path is never more than 20 feet away or out of view. As you reach mile two, you'll begin to see the Giant Sequoias scattered, and become more frequent after you see the Forest Service signs indicating that a Giant Sequoia grove is ahead.
There is a viewpoint and a place to rest at about 3.5 miles. Looking north, you can see across the canyon, Cedar Slope and in the distance, Jordan Lookout. Continuing on, the trail climbs another 3.5 miles to end at an intersection with the Summit Trail. The section just past the viewpoint is one of the steepest, but once that's done, the grade mellows out over the last few miles.
The Summit Trail can be accessed via the town of Ponderosa by continuing on Highway 190 past Camp Nelson another 30 minutes. Because of the continuous grade, taking the Summit Trail from Ponderosa, and then continuing down the Bear Creek Trail is a popular route for mountain biking.
Run this trail?
We need help with the following missing trail information:
Need to Know, Dogs Allowed, Flora & Fauna, Runner Notes
Land Manager: USFS - Sequoia National Forest Office