Ice House Canyon Peaks--Ontario, Cucamonga, Bighorn & Telegraph

Ice House Canyon Peaks--Ontario, Cucamonga, Bighorn & Telegraph

Page Type: Trip Report
Date Climbed/Hiked: May 11, 2012
Activities: Hiking
Season: Spring

Ontario, Cucamonga, Bighorn & Telegraph Peaks

The trip began at Ice House Canyon and proceeded up to Ontario Peak after reaching Ice House Saddle. After proceeding above Kelly's Camp, and upon hitting a ridge, there was a split over to Bighorn Peak. I continued up to Ontario Peak then returned to the split and proceeded to Bighorn Peak. From Bighorn Peak I meant to take the ridge down to the saddle between Bighorn Peak and Cucamonga Peak, for which there is no trail, but I ended up glissading down scree a little short of the ridge. Upon obtaining the trail, I then proceeded to Cucamonga Peak. From Cucamonga Peak I returned to Ice House Saddle and then began up the 3Ts trail, culminating in a last .25 mile offshoot (it seemed more) to Telegraph Peak. It was then back down to Ice House Canyon. The total mileage appears to be about 22+ miles with a fair amount of gain, probably 5,000+, given the up and downs. I had thought about doing Thunder Mountain, but passed when I saw how boring it looked from Telegraph Peak. I skipped summiting Timber Mountain, having done it before, and having found it underwhelming, especially compared to Telegraph.

An interesting thing about this hike is that you proceed up the canyon, then go along a ridge that follows one leg of the canyon, and then eventually end up on the opposite ridge on the opposite side of the canyon. Also, if one wants to bail short of all 4 peaks, it is quite easy to do, as the trails from the peaks all converge at Ice House Saddle. Bighorn is the least impressive of the four peaks, but it is definitely worth summiting so you can cut over to Cucamonga, which means you can hit the 3 big peaks readily accessible from Ice House Canyon.

It was very nice doing this hike on a Friday, instead of a Saturday. It probably kept it possible since there were hardly any people around, as compared to a Saturday, so I was able to keep to my own pacing instead of being influenced by others.

I took 5 liters of liquid and used it all, wishing I had another liter at least. I began rationing after 3 liters were gone on top of Cucamonga Peak.

I started at 4:34 a.m., but should have started later. I got off the trail early on going up the stream bed, even though I thought I knew the trail. As it turns out the trip took 13 hours, so I would much rather have started at 5:30 a.m. and avoided such misdirection, which also would have allowed me to miss some of the Friday night traffic after the trip was done.

It is a very satisfying hike and a good training hike for other things, especially since it can easily be cut short if need be or it is taking more time than one planned for before beginning.


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JacobWong - May 16, 2012 4:14 pm - Hasn't voted

Ice House Canyon Trip

Hi Roy:
Nice for you to share your experience with us. Also nice to find out that you are still in one piece. Be real careful next time on your adventure. You are somewhat limb-prone to unexpectedness.


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