Butler Peak Lookout
US 292, CA 25

1981 - courtesy of Bruce D. Risher

Lookout Details

Registry Numbers US 292, CA 25 (view other lookouts in United States, California)
Date Registered January 6, 1999
Nominated by George & Pam Morey
Location San Bernardino National Forest
San Bernardino County, California
Coordinates N 34° 15.393' W 117° 00.459' (view using Google Maps)
N 34° 15' 24" W 117° 00' 28"
N 34.256545° W 117.007658°
Elevation 8,419 ft (2,566 m)
Built 1935
Administered by U.S. Forest Service
Cooperators Mountain Top Ranger District


One of the crown jewels of the Southern California lookouts, Butler Peak Lookout overlooks Big Bear Lake and the scenic Angeles-San Bernardino Crest high country just north of the Los Angeles basin. Built by the CCC in 1933, the the cab is a Region 5 Plan BC-301 14’ x 14’ wooden ground house with catwalk is perched on a rock outcrop.

A very popular tourist destination, the tower is staffed by volunteers, and is normally open from Memorial Day weekend to Labor Day weekend, sometimes past Labor Day weather permitting. The normal "open" tower hours are every day from 9:00 am to 5:00 pm. Most likely there will be volunteers there to welcome you and share the "tower" experience, but if the tower is closed due to no volunteers to fill the schedule, you can still go up to the tower. Just make the short trek to the tower, climb the stairs, and enjoy the spectacular view from the tower catwalk!

Bruce D. Risher served as the last paid lookout operator in 1981. The tower was taken out of service then reopened with volunteer staffing in 1986.

Butler Peak is again being staffed by Southern California Mountain Foundation volunteers as of August 2022 after a 3 year closure due to storm damage to the access road.


Change Basemap



2009 - courtesy of Brad Eells

Photo courtesy of Brad Eells

Osborne Fire-Finder

Osborne Fire-Finder - courtesy of Brad Eells

Photo courtesy of Brad Eells

October 31, 1935

October 31, 1935 - courtesy of the San Bernardino Sun