Boating on Big Bear Lake is one of the most popular activities during the summer
season. On sunny summer days you will find all kinds of boats on the lake, from
tiny aluminum fishing boats, sail boats and hobie-cats to luxury performance boats.
Having a boat on the lake gives you an entirely different view of Big Bear. Boaters
can cruise the shore and see the lakefront homes from the water, they can cruise
into the many coves and inlets and around China Island aka Garstin Island providing
the water is deep enough. China Island is a curious, beautiful, privately owned
island and the tall rock formation behind is a favorite spot for locals and tourists
to climb and jump into the water below. Boating families love the area around the
island for beaching their boats and picnicking. Adjacent to China Island closer
to the dam, there are several public buoys to tie your boat to; you can then relax
and enjoy the views – this is on a first-come, first-served basis.
If you don’t own a boat you can rent one from one of the many marinas in Big
Bear Lake. For boat owners Big Bear Lake has two excellent, well maintained public
launch ramps operated by the Municipal Water District or MWD. The launch ramps are
on the north side of the lake and the launch ramp on the east side near the Stanfield
Cut-off is the Carol Morrison Public Launch Ramp and the launch ramp to the west
is the Duane Boyer Public Launch Ramp. Remember that the maximum boat length is
26 ft and the MWD requires that all boats be inspected and have a boat permit for
Big Bear Lake before they are launched. Happy Boating!