RUNNING SPRINGS ( — Drivers heading to or from Big Bear on Sunday had to pack their patience — as well as chains — if they wanted to experience Sunday’s snow at the region’s resorts.

By nightfall, chains were still needed on Highway 18 east of Big Bear Dam to the junction with Highway 38, as well as Highway 38 east of Angelus Oak.

Up at Snow Valley Mountain Resort, Ziyad Mahmud of Corona had a wreck because of snowy conditions, but it was just a small upset on his sled.

“Well, I’ve been to Big Bear before,” Ziyad said confidently.

Snow Valley was packed with kids, adults and newly fallen snow on Sunday. There was sledding, skiing and snowboarding. A worker at the resort said they received 5 to 6 inches of snow on Sunday.

The weather forecast calling for as much as a foot of snow is what drew the crowd.

“Absolutely, it’s beautiful,” sauid Yolanda Golithan.

“It actually just started snowing again, but it’s been going pretty much all day,” said Jeremiah Frias, who headed up from San Diego with his two children, Jeremiah Jr. and Amaya, so they could snowboard.

Getting down the slopes was easier than getting up to the resort for some, with chains required on Highway 18 much of the day.

“This is my first time, so it was kind of scary,” said Gigi Garcia of Riverside, who did not bring chains when she and friend Stephanie Castro headed up the mountain.

They joined others in line to buy chains, and learned they are more expensive in the mountains.

“We didn’t think we would need them,” said Garcia, who added the chains cost them $75.

Normally the charge to install the chains is $40, but an installer named Scott put them on Garcia’s tires for free.

Lynda Bowie, who used to brave the drive but is now a part-time resident of Running Springs, said she and her friend Robin headed for the mountains when they heard this weekend’s forecast.

“It’s so serene and peaceful. I feel like it’s a different world when I’m out here,” said Bowie. “I love the snow. It’s been years since I witnessed this. I love it.”


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