The journey to the summit of Cucamonga Peak began at 5:30 AM. The group, Black Girls Trekkin’ met up in another parking lot before sunrise so that we could carpool to the trailhead. We knew that there wouldn’t be a lot of parking, but we did end up finding a place on the side of the road a little further away from the parking lot at the trailhead. It was dark, I was cold, and I was sort of hesitant even to hike that day, but I also didn’t want to miss any more chances to summit another peak in the Six-Pack of Peaks Challenge. Although I was tired and wasn’t feeling all that great, I laced up my hiking boots, grabbed my gear, and decided to climb a mountain.
We ended up taking the Ice House trail to the 8,859-foot summit and hiked nearly 12 miles there and back. It was a heavily trafficked trail that actually connected a few other trails to the surrounding peaks. I kept my light jacket on the majority of the day since the temperatures only climbed to a high of 70 degrees Fahrenheit and enjoyed the fact that I wasn’t completely drenched in sweat by the time I left the base of the mountain.
The trail’s scenery eluded to the approaching new season that was, at the time, only days away. Brilliant reds, oranges, and yellows were mixed in with the fading green leaves in the tall trees. A crunchy blanket of colorful autumn leave covered the forest floor, and the cool rushing stream alongside the trail drowned out the majority of the forest’s surrounding sounds. Everything except for the flying insects that kept buzzing past my eyes and ears the last two or three miles of the hike was absolutely beautiful. There were gorgeous views of the desert, the adjacent city, and the surrounding wilderness, and I enjoyed watching the world from above the tall buildings below.
I wouldn’t mind hiking that trail again to Cucamonga Peak when I’m feeling a little closer to 100 percent. There is so much more to see and explore, and I wouldn’t mind witnessing, even more, fall color as the season progresses. I suppose I will see part of this trail again soon when I revisit the area to summit Ontario Peak.