Silver Peak can also be climbed utilizing Forest Road 3N36. This road starts near the entrance to the Mitsubishi Cement Plant on Hwy 18 between Big Bear and Lucerne Valley. Climbing Silver Peak this way is about 5 miles and 2,300' gain, all of the gain nice and steady, so this is a great workout. This route also affords tremendous views of the desert to the north. En route you pass through some beautiful Pinyon pine/juniper/and Joshua tree woodland, with some possible areas to camp, if you bring your own water.
Forest Road 3N36 starts near the entrance to the Mitsubishi Cement Plant on Hwy 18 north of Big Bear and south of Lucerne Valley. It's a well-marked dirt road, the sign is a vertical brown carsonite post used often by the Forest Service.
This road is clearly signed and appears on the USGS topo "Big Bear City"
However, there are some side roads, so bring a map and follow these directions:
There is a dirt turnout for parking at the beginning of 3N36. Walk up this gravel/rock road about 1/8 mile then hang a right (signed junction). At the next junction make a right. At the next make a left. Soon you'll be in a bowl area "Monarch Flat" that would make for a nice place to camp. Stay straight through the bowl and after you start climbing a little you'll come to another junction - make a right and continue climbing. Soon you'll pass over a saddle and the road levels off for a little bit. Enjoy it, for soon you'll climb up a steep loose rocky section through a gully. At the top of the gully, make a left. Follow the road as it makes one long switchback. At the end of the switchback is another flat area where you can also camp. Stay left through the bowl and over the next rise you'll see Silver Peak in front of you.
Water, sun hat, sunglasses, sun screen, boots, and trekking poles (will steady you on the descent as a lot of the road is made of loose rock)