The name "Cucamonga" was derived from an old Spanish rancheria nearby. The meaning has been variously interpreted as "sandy place" or "place of many springs." That may describe the rancheria, but not the Cucamonga Wilderness, located at the east end of Southern California's San Gabriel range. The steep, rugged terrain rises abruptly from the urban San Bernardino Valley, ranging from approximately 5,000 feet to almost 9,000 feet. Most of the streams are intermittent and water is scarce, but the Wilderness offers a handy retreat to a beautiful sub-alpine setting on 18 miles of trails for the nearby suburban population. Numerous wildlife species do well in the area, including deer, bear, mountain lions, and bighorn sheep. The Cucamonga Wilderness is managed jointly by the Angeles and San Bernardino National Forests.
Leave No Trace
How to follow the seven standard Leave No Trace principles differs in different parts of the country (desert vs. Rocky Mountains). Click on any of the principles listed below to learn more about how they apply in the Cucamonga Wilderness.
Digital and paper maps are critical tools for wilderness visitors. Online maps can help you plan and prepare for your visit ahead of time. You can also carry digital maps with you on your GPS unit or other handheld GPS device. Having a paper map with you in the backcountry, as well as solid orienteering skills, however, ensures that you can still route-find in the event that your electronic device fails.
Motorized equipment and equipment used for mechanical transport is generally prohibited in all wilderness areas.
This includes the use of motor vehicles, motorboats, motorized equipment, bicycles, hang gliders, wagons, carts, portage wheels, and the landing of aircraft including helicopters.