Stanfield Marsh Wildlife and Waterfowl Preserve

Written by K. Hart at


When you're looking for a day trip in Big Bear that offers serenity, wildlife, and no commercialism, head to Stanfield Marsh Wildlife and Waterfowl Preserve.

Perfect for families, nature lovers, and bird enthusiasts, Stanfield Marsh Wildlife and Waterfowl Preserve is a haven of biodiversity. 

The habitat serves as a sanctuary for numerous species of migratory birds and a refuge for native plants and marshland habitats.

In 1982, the Big Bear Municipal Water District (MWD) apportioned the 145-acre Marsh as a wildlife preserve to protect the delicate wetlands ecosystem. 

Today, Stanfield Marsh offers a serene retreat amidst the hustle and bustle of Big Bear. It boasts picturesque trails with mesmerizing views. 

Visitors can park in the southwest corner of the facility and stop at the wooden gazebo serving as an information kiosk. Make sure to peruse the information on the boards. You'll learn about the creatures you may encounter and how the wetlands work to maintain a healthy and growing habitat for the diverse wildlife and flora.

Once acclimated with knowledge of the Marsh, stroll along the water on the wooden walkway. 

With its unmatched natural beauty, diverse wildlife, and serene atmosphere, the Stanfield Marsh Wildlife and Waterfowl Preserve is a must-visit attraction in Big Bear.  

So, pack a picnic, put on your hiking boots, and discover the wonders of this extraordinary marshland on your Big Bear vacation.

Fun Facts & Cool Features 

The Stanfield Marsh Wildlife and Waterfowl Preserve's main highlight is its incredible diversity of bird species. 

With more than 250 birds flocking to this nature haven, including American avocets, egrets, and herons, it's a paradise for ornithologists and casual birdwatchers. 

But don't think that the Preserve is just for the birds! The marshland habitat is also home to various other wildlife residents, like squirrels, raccoons, and the occasional sighting of deer and bears.

While exploring Stanfield Marsh Wildlife and Waterfowl Preserve, don't forget to stop at the beautiful wooden observation deck. The well-positioned deck offers unobstructed and elevated views of the marshland and the striking panoramas of Big Bear Lake and surrounding mountains.

Getting There 

Here are directions from Big Bear, California:

  • Get to Big Bear Blvd (CA-18.).
  • Turn North onto Fox Farm Road.
  • Take a right on Swan Drive.
  • Look for the Preserve entrance sign on your right-hand side.
  • Address: 42300 Big Bear Blvd, Big Bear, CA 92314


Good news! There is no fee to visit Stanfield Marsh Wildlife and Waterfowl Preserve.

Local Tips

  • Visit during the early morning or late afternoon when fish and birds are more active.
  • Birdwatchers, don't forget your binoculars and a field guide of local birds for identification.
  • It gets muddy during rainy seasons; bring appropriate boots or shoes.
  • Parking is limited; plan accordingly.
  • Pack some insect repellent to ward off pesky mosquitoes.
  • Remember — leave no trace! Help preserve the Preserve!


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