Desperately Seeing Cucamonga Peak

Peak Summited2020 Cucamonga Peak
Type of HikeDay hike
TrailheadIce House Canyon
EncounteredWildflowers blooming
Road ConditionsRoad suitable for all vehicles
Bug StatusNo bugs
Snow ConditionsSnow free
Trail ConditionsTrail in good condition

Having not hit a peak since El Cajon May 13th I needed a no surprise, beautiful and inspiring hike to shake the pandemic doldrums. For me that is Cucamonga Peak. I did it last year and I love this hike! First you approach through wonderful Ice House Canyon, a destination in and of itself – creek pumping its just gorgeous. And then I like the physical aspect of the climb as you go up and switch back to switch back to the Saddle junction with Big Horn and Ontario Peak. A bit after the saddle there is a 1/2 mile or more decent before its ever upwards to Cucamonga Peak. Going back this section sucks – but this hike mostly up up and down down. For me the views from here are a great treat, real fun, interesting making the 6 mile grind up worth the this prize at the end. I can make out Big Bear Valley where I grew up to the east with Sugarloaf Mountain capping the valley's southern limit, keep scanning to the right and it gives way quick to San Bernardino Peak, with San Gorgonio behind it, the Lake Fire in evidence, the pass then San Jacinto, then keep working your West to Saddleback that highlights my hometown in South Orange County.

By the numbers:

  • Parked at 0615 a Friday lot only a 1/4 taken, so not crowded and as a solo hiker not totally alone – that is ideal. The weather was great with the early start and was getting warm on the way back but its all down hill so wasn't an issue at all.
  • Started the trail at 0625, peaked at 0938, stayed 30 mins on top for a sandwich, views, pictures and some chill time, left at 1008 and finished at 1236. The Friday hike was ideal almost no down traffic while heading up – like 3 or 4 campers and on the way down there were plenty of folks coming up, couple groups in front of me  but everyone made it work free and easy.
  • My GPS put the hike in at 12(.03) miles exactly – I paused it while I was on top so

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