Fourteen days. That’s how long the Big Bear winter holiday period lasted if you count from Dec. 23 to Jan. 5. With Christmas Day and New Year’s Day falling in the middle of the week, the extended period was not a deterrent to visitors choosing Big Bear for their holiday vacation.

Justin Kanton, advertising and public relations director at Big Bear Mountain Resort, said Snow Summit and Bear Mountain saw similar numbers compared to last year. Exact numbers are not available to the public per Alterra Mountain Resort policy. Big Bear Mountain Resort is part of the Alterra family.

“It was pretty close to what we experienced last year, I think due in large part to the early snow and the snow during the week,” Kanton said. “That certainly did us a favor. We were obviously very busy.”

Kanton said the resort does its part to inform visitors about travel and parking through email blasts and social media. “We have started to send out messages with tips to plan ahead and be prepared. We have to treat parking like we are a theme park or Disneyland. It takes that level of preparation.”

Darien Schaeffer, CEO of Visit Big Bear, said the new location for the Visitors Center saw a dramatic increase in visitors. “I think visitors to Big Bear this year was similar to last year, but not greater than last year,” Schaeffer said. “We saw less of visitors being in the wrong place. That’s something we encourage. We try to reinforce to our visitors to be in the right place.”

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