Road Conditions: Having knowledge of the area or the Cucamonga Wilderness map put out by the forest service helps on this trip. From the I15 north, exit Sierra and drive north. Look for the Forest Entrance sign after a mile or two, San Sevaine dirt road (1N34) will be on the left, just past the sign. There is a seasonal gate here. Call the Lytle Creek Ranger Station to be sure it is open. The road starts out graded dirt, but it gets rocky, and is a long 13 miles. It usually takes a hour to drive it, one-way. Passenger cars, or cars with low-clearance will not make it. The road requires high-clearance and occasionally 4wd, depending on recent conditions. At 0.0 miles, you will find a seasonal gate. At 0.5 miles, you will see a fork, continue straight. At 1 mile, road 2N57 crosses our road. At 7.8 miles, a side road heads to the microwave tower. At 8.6 miles there is a rough section of road. At 11.2 miles, you will come to the other seasonal gate. If the first gate was open, this one will be too. At 11.8 miles, you be at Big Tree camp, turn right here, and drive to the end of the camp. The trailhead is here. Be careful not to drive past the camp sites at Big Tree, it is easy to do. There are no signs letting you know you are there. The road past the campsites (still 1N34) is very rough, long, and 4wd only. A section of 1N34 around mile 8 was destroyed by landslide a few years back. The Forest Service has only bulldozed and re-opened the road recently. The gate is closed during the summer for wildlife concerns. It usually opens the first of September, it closes and re-opens according to winter snows and road conditions. Call the Lytle Creek Ranger Station to be sure it is open.
Numbers for San Sevaine trailhead (1811 m) to Cucamonga Peak (2700 m):
8.6 km (one-way)
+1053 m gain, -191 m loss, 14% slope
3 hours (one-way)
Trail Notes: The trail starts at the dead end of the road in the camp area. After about 1.3 km (1990 m) you enter the Cucamonga wilderness by passing the entry sign. At 2.7 km (2125 m), look for a small sign on an oak tree marking the western extension of the Blew Jordam mine claim. At 3 km (2150 m), you will reach the Blew Jordam mine and cabin. The mine is just a prospect, seemingly never producing much, except as the owner states: hard work. At 4.8 km (2360 m), you will see a side trail heading up the ridge to the left, stay on the north side of the peak. At 5.6 km (2496 m), you will round a corner on the ridge and be done with the hard climbing; and start traversing the north side of the long ridge line that terminates at Cucamonga Peak. At 6.1 km (2530 m), you will come to a nice campsite in the saddle of the ridge. At 7.2 km (2540 m), you will be at another nice camp site in the saddle of the ridge. At 8.0 km (2630 m), you will be on the shoulder of Cucamonga Peak, look for a sign "Cucamonga Peak". The trail forks off in a few directions in this area, but just head uphill and you will be going straight for the peak.
This is a spectacular trail and road. The views along the way are great, only surpassed by the view from the summit. The biggest problems for the trail, is the fact that there is no water anywhere near it, and the tough road is closed often during the year. There is another section of 1N34 that is even tougher. It starts in Rancho Cucamonga and is 15 miles of high-clearance, 4wd road, and takes much longer to drive.
I will have this trail on my new web page, when it is up.
Copyright © 1999 by Guy Starbuck and Tom Chester.
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Comments and feedback: Guy Starbuck | Tom Chester
Last update: 18 November 1999.