Ruminating at the Ruins

Stone cabin ruins dating to the 19th century: Icehouse Canyon, California

I've tried convincing my wife that we should move our family here, to these very stone cabin ruins in Icehouse Canyon, one of my favorite family-friendly hiking destinations in our local mountains, the San Gabriels.  So far, however, she's steadfastly refused. She doesn't like that the place lacks glass windows — or a ceiling. She's so particular.  I've countered we wouldn't have any outrageous air conditioning bills.  We'd save some hard earned money!  She's then counter-countered we'd have no protection from bears or mountain lions well known to inhabit, if not haunt, the mile-high wilderness area, the very canyon so named "Icehouse" because a hundred years ago, more or less, it was the premier supplier of ice for the burgeoning city of Los Angeles, thirty-five air miles to the southwest.  She's got a point there.  We'd have ice aplenty, and free air conditioning, but mama bears and menacing mountain lions might be too much for even our dependable exterminator to handle.  All right, I guess we won't be moving (**sighs despondently**) into the ruins anytime soon.

Check out Icehouse Canyon in winter!

USGS Topographic Map Quadrant of Icehouse Canyon
& portions of the Cucamonga Wilderness


  1. I surely believed that your wife will not agree. Definitely not even if you're going to save on a lot of

  2. There's just no convincing her, Nana!

  3. I live these kind of maps. Often I prefer staring at them to reading words.

  4. Thanks Murr! (Memo to me to check my comments more frequently!)

    I'm the same way, Peter, there's much topographical drama to be read in these maps, once you learn how. I was lucky my Dad was so into backpacking, that reading these maps was almost as second nature to me as reading words was from early on. What's weird is when you've intensely studied a topo of a particular area you've never visited before, you still oddly recognize the terrain once you visit it, as if in fact you had already visited the area before. That's the visual power of topography.


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