Happy Tuesday everyone! This most recent Sunday I summited Cucamonga Peak which is #2 of the Six-Pack of Peaks (This was my 4th out of the 6!). I did not even know this Peak existed until a couple months ago, which is surprising since it is right next to Mount Baldy which is probably one of most visited hiking trails. This hike was definitely a butt kicker but the views at the top made all the pain worth it.
My dad and I started our adventure very early (3:45am to be exact) and we finally arrived to the trail at 6:30am. The sun did not rise till 7am but there was just enough light to get us through 15 minutes of pre-sunrise hiking. There were many people already on the trail by the time we started hiking which is always nice when hiking a new trail. Along with plenty of people to ask for directions there were tons of helpful signs that directed us to the peak.
As seen in the picture above, the trail we initially took was to the Ice House Saddle (3.6 miles). This trail was very easy to follow and started off relatively easy with minimal elevation gain. There are two options hikers can take after the 1st mile of the hike, either 2.6 miles or 4.7 miles to Ice House Saddle. The 2.6 miles option is much steeper so we chose that route.
After the first 2 miles the elevation started to increase and the booty work began. The incline was not too steep but definitely much more significant than the beginning of the trail.
After a long 3.6 miles we finally reached Ice House Canyon, also called Ice House Saddle. This little summit was really cool because there were so many different options to continue the hike. There were several trails that could lead to Mt. Baldy summit and other beautiful places close by.
As we reached Ice House Canyon it started to get even colder than it already was and since I was not prepared for cold weather after a week of high temps, I had to pull out one of my emergency blankets and try to make my own additional jacket, of course with the help of my dad. It had drizzled off and on throughout the hike but not enough where our clothing or hair got wet. We continued on towards Cucamonga Peak for a daunting 2.4 miles.
At this point we still had a significant amount of elevation gain and less than 3 miles left, which meant time for real booty work and big incline gains. The second portion of trail started off steady and then a sad decrease in elevation, which meant we had to regain that elevation by walking uphill…again.
After what felt like forever we finally reached the top. I almost thought I was never going to make it but I pushed through and enjoyed the chilly weather and amazing views. Cucamonga Peak definitely has different views than Baldy even though they are so close to each other. Cucamonga’s views showcase the beauty of San Bernardino which includes some views of the city that Baldy’s views do not have.
Overall this hike was definitely a challenge but was very rewarding. I will definitely be back here again and it is especially good for training for other hikes like Mt. Whitney. We spent a total of 6 hours on the mountain, hiked a little over 12 miles and gained over 4,000 ft in elevation. Prepare for a long day and bring lots of snacks!
written by @danny3402