Once you pass Highland and start up the mountain, there are no gas stations until you reach Running Springs. While it's only about 20 miles... if the traffic is bad it can sometimes take more than 2 or even 3 hours to get to Running Springs. Don't take chances. Fill up your gas tank before you get started. Cell phone reception is patchy on the mountain and there's not often a shoulder where you can pull over.
In the winter, the roads can get very icy in Big Bear and all over the mountain. If you're driving up the mountain, you need to bring along snow chains. Don't put them on until you reach the upper portion of the mountain. There will be areas that you can pull over and put on the chains. Usually, there are men who will help you do it for a small fee. If the ice is dangerous, cars without chains will not be allowed to proceed up the mountain, so it's better to be safe than sorry. There is an Auto Zone in Highland, right at the base of the mountain that sells chains. Exit at Base Line Drive.
In wintertime it is advisable to travel with chains in
this area. Elevation can be anywhere between 6,000 to
8,000 ft. and proper clothing for the season should be
anticipated and allowed for.