Bear Valley Springs, CA

Population:

Bear Valley Springs is a charming gated community nestled in the Tehachapi mountains. There are 25,000 acres of land and 3,500 home sites.  BVS is estimated to have a population of around 7,500 residents.  While the greater Tehachapi area has an estimated population of 35,000.

Area:

Bear Valley Springs is a 15-minute drive from the town of Tehachapi at an elevation between 4,121 and 6,934 feet. Resting in between the San Joaquin Valley and Mojave Desert in Kern County. It is an hour and fifteen minutes East of Bakersfield and two hours and fifteen minutes North of Los Angeles.

History:

While the nation had pushed to the western coast, the land the Fickert family settled in in 1869 was still isolated and remote. For centuries, it had been the realm of Native Americans. Over the years, after purchasing squatter’s rights to 160 acres, the Fickerts expanded their holdings, by the 1900s, their ranch encompassed a vast region of 25,000 acres.

By 1959, the last of the immediate Fickert family were gone, joining their kin who had passed before in the tiny family cemetery just up the hill from the main house.

Dart Resorts purchased the ranch from the Fickert heirs. Resource Ecology Associates were employed by Dart to plan and maintain the original natural value of the property, including wildlife. From there, Bear Valley Springs was born.

The first sales of property were in late 1970 with a full sales team starting January 1971. The project was sold out in November 1977. The Bear Valley Springs Community Services District was formed to act as a nonprofit organization for management and maintenance of the water, roads, and police protection.  The Bear Valley Springs Property Owners Association was formed to administer the amenity package. Together they insure the upkeep of the facilities of Bear Valley Springs.

The original concept was a second home destination resort where families could come to spend a weekend or longer and have a complete amenities package. The concept changed from second homes to full-time residents, approximately 3,700 homes.  Former President Ronald Reagan bought a ranch in BVS. A number of athletes and TV/movie stars have made BVS their home.

Amenities:

BVS is a full amenity small mountain community full of enchanting wildlife and gorgeous four-season weather.  It is not uncommon to see herds of deer crossing roads, packs of Elk grazing in fields, hawks flying above or residents riding their horses down road-side trails.  Bear Valley is an equestrian’s dream, with most homes having barns and acreage for horses and hundreds of miles of trails throughout.  There is an immaculate equestrian Center that residents can board their horses at that caters to all disciplines. The Center has horse trainers, riding instructors and several arenas including a lighted indoor arena. One of the most special attributes of Bear Valley is the Sycamore Canyon waterfall which is flowing during Winter and springs months, home owners and their guests can hike to this wonderful spot and take in the rich landscape. Residents have access to sports leagues, campgrounds, tennis, a 25- yard pool and a shooting/archery range.  Also included is a gym, radio model air field, Cub lake dog park, Beaubien Athletic field, Bear Valley nature path and The Oak Tree Country Club Golf Course, which provides a full service golf shop and includes a 9-hole, par-36 course designed by Ted Robinson, Sr. BVS has a community center and the BVS police force. There is a thriving cycling and mountain bike community as well.

Bear Valley also has two lakes, one of which is 4-Island Lake, a 37.5-acre lake located along the BVS Golf Course.  The lake is stocked for fishing enthusiasts and allows swimming, fishing, boating (sail, canoes, catamarans, kayaks, row boats and electric boats not in excess of three horsepower).  Also available are launch ramps, 3 fishing docks, a picnic area, sand volleyball court, two areas for parties, bathrooms and playground. The second is Cub Lake, a 9.75-acre lake that also offers a beautiful picnic area around the lake with lots of large shade trees.  Fishing is allowed (no swimming or boating). There is a walking path, outdoor basketball court, playground area, a dock for fishing and model boats, restrooms and five areas for parties.  Adjacent to the park is a leash free dog park.  During the summer months Cub Lake also offers “Moonlight Theater” after dark.

Rounding out the long list of home owner amenities is The Oaks restaurant and Bar which has live music and free dinner on your birthday!

Real Estate:

Bear Valley Real Estate is relatively inexpensive compared to the rest of the State and housing remains affordable to the majority of the population.

As of January 25, 2017, there were 120 lots listed for sale.  Lots range from .32 of an acre to 33.05 acres and all have paved roads, water-lines and power lines to each lot.  Some have natural gas and public sewer, while others may use septic and propane.  Prices for raw land range between $3,000 to $219,000.

 

Homes listed for sale as of January 2017, were 59 total. Square footage of these homes range from 858 square feet to a 4,676 square foot home.  Prices ranging from $91,000 to $925,000. The average price for a four-bedroom home is $410,000 and $369,000 for a three bedroom.

Industry & Economy:

Historically, the primary employers in the region are the Tehachapi State Prison, the Cement Factory and the School district, but the aviation industry has returned to the region with Scaled Composites, The Spaceship Company and of course NASA. Many Bear Valley Springs residents also work at nearby Edwards Air Force Base, just 55 minutes east.

Tehachapi Agriculture supports some of the worlds most innovative and advanced greenhouses, each 20 acres a piece, filling up the Cummings Valley.

Bear Valley is a popular home site for many involved with the world of aviation because of its proximity to the Air Force Base. The town boasts many celebrity aviator residents, including astronauts and test pilots, racing world champions and innovators.

Many BVS residents work in Tehachapi, Bakersfield, Los Angeles or else ware and commute home to Bear Valley to live in the gorgeous seasonal weather and quiet life.

Climate:

Bear Valley Springs is known for its four-season climate.  The wet season is generally November through May, although thunderstorms are likely during the summer.  Average temperatures range from 88 °F in July to 52 °F in January.  The area typically collects 15-20 inches of snow each winter.  BVS is a nice option for those who work in Bakersfield or Mojave that like cooler temperatures as it is consistently 20 degrees’ cooler in summer.

Schools:

BVS is a part of the Tehachapi Unified School district with around 4,900 students.  Within that district, there is one public High School, one Middle School and three Elementary Schools.  Tehachapi has 10 primary secondary schools, three of which are private and several private pre-schools.

Tehachapi schools pride themselves on traditional programs such as 4-H and innovative programs such as robotics which is backed by leading aero-space companies.

Shopping:

Bear Valley itself has an adorable country store to fill basic needs of food & drinks.  For all other shopping needs a quick 15 minute drive into Tehachapi are grocery stores, Kmart, Home Depot and other necessities.  Old Town also has quaint shops, boutiques and antique stores.  For any larger shopping needs, just over an hour away in Bakersfield, is one of California’s largest 1 story inside malls (Valley Plaza) and several other outside malls such as the Marketplace featuring boutique and national chain brand retailers with many to choose from. The Outlets at Tejon is Central California’s newest retail destination with upscale designer fashion and home good brands, just an hour and 15 away from BVS.

Entertainment:

While most of the entertainment in Bear Valley Springs are outside activities, BVS has two restaurants and a bar/ saloon for residents.  The Oaks Restaurant specializes in contemporary American cuisine with an upscale casual setting.  They offer Sunday brunch as well as take out.  At the end of the 9th hole of the Bear Valley Golf course, you will find The Mulligan Room, serving comfort food in a casual setting with a beautiful view of Bear Valley. Oak Branch Saloon is Bear Valley Springs’ favorite place to enjoy food, fun, friends and your favorite beverage.  The Saloon is a full service bar that has live entertainment every Friday & Saturday night, line dancing with professional instructors Wednesday & Sunday nights, social hours and seasonal sporting events on high-definition flat screens.

Transportation:

Within Bear Valley, the only public transportation is the school bus system.  Outside of that all transportation is by car.  Within the 15 minute drive to Tehachapi however, there is highway, bus, railway and air transportation.  There are convenient train pickups in Lancaster and Bakersfield that travel all throughout Southern California. Centrally located by the 58 freeway, which is a major thoroughfare for East/ West California traffic. The rapid transit bus system picks up in Tehachapi and transports to all of surrounding bus and train depots.  Ride sharing programs to Edwards air force base and Mojave are also popular with residents.  Tehachapi Municipal Airport is a public airport known as the corridor to Northern and Southern California.