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Ontario Peak Hike Featured
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Los Angeles Hikes

Hike Ontario Peak and Bighorn Peak

  • 14.7 miles - Hard Effort
  • 8 Hours (Total)
  • 4,240 Total Feet of Climbing
  • Max Elevation of 8,696 feet
  • Leashed Dogs Allowed

If you want a great Angeles National Forest mountain hike without the crowds, hike Ontario Peak (8,696 ft) and Bighorn Peak. The hike begins on the popular Icehouse Canyon trail but soon moves off to the much less traveled Ontario Peak Trail, where you might see more bighorn sheep than people. The Ontario Peak Trail roughly follows a ridge line, offering great views culminating in the "rock nest" summit of Ontario Peak. There's also a short spur trip to Bighorn Peak, because, why not? This is a tough hike but worth the effort–one of my favorites.

In this Guide:
  • Turn by Turn Hike Directions & Video
  • Ontario Peak Trail Maps
  • How to Get to the Ontario Peak Hike

How To Get To the Ontario Peak Hike

Use this GPS trailhead address: 20 Ice House Canyon Rd, Mt Baldy, CA, 91759, USA.

There is a big parking lot, but it fills up by 7am, and you need a parking pass. I use the affordable National Parks Pass, which gets me in every park, monument, and national forest. You can also use an (Southern California only) Adventure Pass, or buy a $5 day permit from the ranger’s office.

Hike Ontario Peak and Bighorn Peak parking
There is plenty of parking at the Icehouse Canyon trailhead, but it fills up quickly on weekends. There are also primitive bathrooms here, the only ones on the hike.

You need a permit to hike in the Cucamonga Wilderness, and it's easy and free. A box at the trailhead has permit forms for you to fill out. Bring a pen. If there are no forms, fill out your info on a piece of paper and leave it.

Gear for the Hike

This is a long and challenging hike. Make sure you pack plenty of water, snacks, and layers. In the winter, there can be snow and ice. Check this summit weather and call the ranger office for the latest conditions and don't take any risks. This is not a hike to do when there is snow or ice.

If you want to check if there's snow on your hike, read this guide.

Gear That I Love Right Now

Nothing is sponsored or promoted, just the actual gear that I use.


Gear Inreach Mini 2
Garmin InReach Mini 2If you are out of cellphone range the Mini 2 will reliably allow you to hit SOS via satellite. You can also send non-emergency texts to just say that you're late, let friends and family follow along, and check the weather. You can see my review here.
Gear Topo Pursuit
Topo Pursuit 2The wide toe box means no blisters, an aggressive tread is great on the trail, it dries very quickly, and it has lots of cushion for long days. It combines everything I love about every other shoe into one.
Gear Epix Pro Up Ahead
Garmin Epix ProThese watches are pricey, but I use them 24/7 for sleep tracking, workouts, heart rate, and tracking my hike. It has preloaded hiking maps that help me navigate the trails and is a backup to my smartphone navigation. The Epix Pro has a great battery life, a screen similar to an Apple Watch Ultra, and works in harsh conditions when just using the buttons. See my review here.
Hikelite 26 Gear
Osprey Hikelite 26This updated version of the Hikelite 26 offers incredible value for the money. It's got a wide trampoline back, so your back doesn't get sweaty. It's under 2lbs, has deep side pockets, and is a great balance of what you need without what you don't.

Check out the complete list here. ( Updated June 2024)

Ontario Peak & Bighorn Peak Trail Maps

Click Here To View

Use This Map:
View in CalTopo | PDF Map | GPX File

Hike Ontario Peak and Bighorn Peak 3d map
You hike up to Icehouse Saddle, then up to a higher ridge where you hike Bighorn Peak to the left, then Ontario Peak to the right.
Hike Ontario Peak and Bighorn Peak elevation
The hike is a steady uphill effort, with a small dip in-between Bighorn Peak and Ontario Peak.

Ontario Peak & Bighorn Peak Hike Directions

Hike Ontario Peak and Bighorn Peak trailhead
The trailhead is at the far corner of the lot and has notices and updates for the Cucamonga Wilderness.
permit box
The hiking permit box is to your left by the board.
permit box
Fill out a hiking permit, save the yellow copy, and put the white copy in the slot on the side of the box.
Ontario Peak and Bighorn Peak hike trail
Start hiking on the Icehouse Canyon trail as it gently climbs along Icehouse Creek. You’ll pass some cabins and ruins as you go. The ruin of the big fireplace is the old Icehouse Canyon Resort, a tavern built in 1921 that burned down in 1980. At about 0.5 miles, take the left.
Ontario Peak and Bighorn Peak hike trail junction
After climbing past the cabins, continue straight through the junction. Going left brings you to Icehouse Saddle but adds some miles onto the hike. So yea, just go straight.
Cucamonga Wilderness sign
At about 1.7 miles, you officially enter the Cucamonga Wilderness area.
stream bed
The trail can get tricky as it goes through the stream bed. Look for cairns and footprints if you aren’t sure.
Ontario Peak and Bighorn Peak hike trail climbs
After leaving the creek bed, the trail starts to climb up the slopes.
Ontario Peak and Bighorn Peak hike trail right turn
At about 3.2 miles, continue to the right towards Icehouse Saddle.
view of mt baldy
As you climb, you'll get nice views of Mt Baldy appear.
Icehouse Saddle junction
At around 3.8 miles you should reach Icehouse Saddle junction. The trail to Ontario Peak is to the right as you enter the saddle area.
cris hazzard at Icehouse Saddle
Icehouse Saddle is a great place to take a break and fuel up for the hike to Ontario Peak.
trail to Kelly Camp and Ontario Peak
Head on the trail to Kelly Camp and Ontario Peak from Icehouse Saddle.
bighorn sheep on trail
This part of the trail is incredibly beautiful. You’ll have views of Mt Baldy and down into Icehouse Canyon. It’s also pretty remote. It’s not uncommon to be the only hiker here. On this day, I shared the trail with a few bighorn sheep who were meandering ahead of me (look closely at the picture!).
bighorn sheep on trail
If you want to see bighorn sheep, don’t forget to look up on the slopes above the trail. There’s no guarantee you’ll see any, but who knows? In this picture, a bighorn stares down at me as I struggle up the trail.
Ontario Peak and Bighorn Peak hike trail
It’s a scenic mile or so from Icehouse Saddle to Kelly Camp.
Kelly Camp
After about 4.8 miles, you’ll reach Kelly Camp, which used to be a resort. These days you can camp here among the old stone ruins. Hike to the left at the fork.
Ontario Peak and Bighorn Peak hike trail
The trail heads up through dead trees and manzanita. Keep your eyes peeled, the trail twists and turns here.
log on trail
There are also some logs to hop over in this section of the trail.
Bighorn Peak trail
After you clear the dead forest, you reach the ridge line, the Bighorn Peak trail goes to the left. Head left to hike to Bighorn Peak. Update from Will M: The sign is missing and there's a small cairn now.
view of Saddleback Mountain
From here on out, as the trail winds on the ridge line, the views are spectacular. Here you can see Saddleback Mountain rising above the clouds in Orange County.
Ontario Peak and Bighorn Peak hike trail
The trail to Bighorn Peak winds it’s way around the ridge. The trail is small, so keep your eyes open.
Ontario Peak and Bighorn Peak hike trail
At the small saddle, start climbing up the final stretch to Bighorn Peak, winding up the small switchbacks.
Bighorn Peak
You made it! Welcome to Bighorn Peak.
stones marking peak
This pile of stones marks the official peak.
trail register
There’s a trail register hidden around the summit.
trail register
Add your name and notes to the trail register if it strikes your fancy.
cris hazzard on bighorn peak
Soak in the views of Cucamonga Peak and Mt Baldy, take a picture or two, and head back to the trail intersection on the ridge.
Ontario Peak and Bighorn Peak hike trail
Back at the intersection, head straight towards Ontario Peak.
Ontario Peak and Bighorn Peak hike trail
The trail continues for a while, going through some sections of manzanita. There are a few peaks that look like the summit as you go. Keep on hiking.
backcountry camping area
At about 7.8 miles, make the right in the little backcountry camping area.
Ontario Peak and Bighorn Peak hike views
As the trail goes along the ridge line, the views are jaw-dropping!
Ontario Peak summit
This pile of rocks is the Ontario Peak summit. Almost there.
summit of Ontario Peak
Climb to the middle of the rock pile to reach the summit of Ontario Peak. There’s a bigger pile of rocks you can scramble up for even better views.
Ontario Peak trail register
The Ontario Peak trail register is in a pile of rocks.
Ontario Peak Sign
If you're lucky, you'll have a summit sign at the top too (thanks to LC for the image).
bottle opener on ontario peak
If you brought a bottle of beer, someone has been nice enough to install a bottle opener up here!
cris hazzard at ontario peak
Grab your pictures, have a bite to eat, and head back the way you came. You can skip the side trip to Bighorn Peak on the way back down unless you’re feeling particularly energetic.
Ontario Peak and Bighorn Peak hike trail views
The trip back down along the ridge line offers new views from the other direction. It’s an incredible section of trail. I hope you love the hike as much as I do!

Need More Info?

  • Have a question about the guide or want to see what other people are saying/asking? View the Youtube comments for this video. Leave a comment and I will do my best to respond.
  • When planning, always check the park website and social media to make sure the trails are open. Similarly, check the weather and road conditions.

This Guide Was Written by Cris Hazzard

Cris Hazzard 4 Mile Trail Yosemite
Hi, I'm Cris Hazzard, aka Hiking Guy, a professional outdoors guide, hiking expert, and author based in Southern California. I created this website to share all the great hikes I do with everyone else out there. This site is different because it gives detailed directions that even the beginning hiker can follow. I also share what hiking gear works and doesn't so you don't waste money. I don't do sponsored or promoted content; I share only the gear recommendations, hikes, and tips that I would with my family and friends. If you like the website and YouTube channel, please support these free guides (I couldn't do it without folks like you!). You can stay up to date with my new guides by following me on YouTube, Instagram, or by subscribing to my monthly newsletter.