3N16 - Holcomb Valley

4.8/5 (70 reviews)
Big Bear Lake, California (San Bernardino County)
Last Updated: 12/20/2022
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Trail Information

Highlights

3N16 provides a scenic, enjoyable drive for all off-road enthusiasts. At roughly 26 miles, this overland trail will take you through the backwoods of the San Bernardino National Forest. Along with some great views, 3N16 also has a historic route for which more information can be found at Big Bear Discovery Center or Gold Fever Trail's trail review. 3N16 is the main connector between most of the trails in Big Bear, including Holcomb Creek, Dishpan Springs, John Bull, White Mountain, Gold Mountain, and many more. Just be warned that there are several water crossings along this trail that can swell up in flash flood conditions. While snow on this trail can get over 5 feet deep in the winter. Please plan accordingly and travel in pairs.

Trail Difficulty and Assessment

Trail Navigation

3N16, aka Holcomb Valley Road, is the perfect trail for all off-road enthusiasts that love some overland trail rides. At about 26 miles long, the trail starts in Running Springs and goes all the way to Big Bear, ending near Baldwin Lake. 3N16 passes several hard trails such as Dishpan Springs (3N34), Holcomb Creek (3N93), 2N06X, John Bull (3N10), Gold Mountain (3N69), and many other great and exciting trails. 3N16 Holcomb Valley Road is a great trail for first-time off-roaders and also provides plenty of entertainment for the more experienced. For the history of Holcomb Valley, please visit Gold Fever Trail here. Important Note: While the road is 26 miles long, only the 11 miles from the Crab Flats Campground junction with 3N34 to Forest OHV Road 3N56 are open to non-street legal vehicles. Reminders: 1. Non-street legal vehicles cannot use the portion of 3N16 to Green Valley Lake Road. 2. Non-street legal vehicles cannot use the portion of 3N16 from 3N56 to the Dump Access Road. 3. Street-legal vehicles only on roads or trails into the communities of Big Bear, Fawnskin, and Green Valley Lake. You can find more information on the historical background of the area at the Big Bear Discovery Center: Hours of Operation: 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. 5 days/week Closed Tuesdays & Wednesdays Located at: 40971 North Shore Drive/ Hwy 38, Fawnskin, CA 92333 Phone: (909) 382-2790

Trail Reviews

4.8/5 (70 reviews)
Status: Open
Rated 5/5
Visited: 12/18/2022
Difficulty Accuracy: Harder

Drove this in our Jeep JKU on 35" MT's, with 4" lift and 5.13 gears. Suffice to say we did not encounter anything our rig was not capable of doing, we started on the west end and it was definitely slow going as the snow and water runoff have created some pretty sizeable ruts that you could end up getting stuck in if you are not careful. Also there was a lot of ice while we were there so several spots were a bit sketchy and we did a decent amount of sliding, so choose your lines wisely and just take it slow and you will be just fine. Saw lots of side by sides as well. I rated this trail as harder than normal just because of the weather and elements. Overall had a fun time with the wife and baby with us.
Rob
700
Status: Open
Rated 5/5
Visited: 12/12/2022
Difficulty Accuracy: Spot On

Drove this in the snow. ~4" of snow on the East end and about 10" on the Western part. A few really deep ruts in the snow drifts on the Western part of the trail took a bit of planning to get around.
Josh Noesser
Official Crew
99850
Status: Open
Rated 5/5
Visited: 09/06/2022
Difficulty Accuracy: Spot On

Drove the whole trail out at the end of the weekend adventures. The east side is rough while the west side is easier but still rough. Overall still easy.
Status: Open
Rated 4/5
Visited: 07/30/2022
Difficulty Accuracy: Spot On

Far as I can tell this road is used by campers and off roaders to get to other more interesting places. It served us well.
Status: Open
Rated 5/5
Visited: 07/03/2022
Difficulty Accuracy: Harder

We used this trail over the weekend to access other trails such as Holcomb Creek and John Bull. The beginning few miles on the west side were was pretty chewed up; still easily doable by any 4wd or awd vehicle with some clearance but you might have to take it slow in a few places.

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