Elevation: 8,921 ft
Climbing and access information for this article is found on page 365. Please note that South Fork Wilson Creek Trail/FST-330, which is a route referred to in the book, no longer exists. The easiest ascent route for Soda Peak is via an old, unmarked ATV trail that climbs the east side of the North Ridge. This unmarked trail is NOT shown on any maps. USGS Soda Peak. Published November 2018
North Ridge, Class 2
Date of Climb: September 8, 2018
From the junction of US-30 and South 3rd Street in Soda Springs (Chevron station on NW side of this intersection; stoplight here), drive S on South 3rd Street, which becomes Eightmile Road. At 6.4 miles, turn R at an unmarked junction (the road going straight is gravel, not paved). At 7.8 miles, the pavement ends. At 9.6 miles, there is an unmarked junction with a private road (on the RHS) just before reaching the RHS turnoff for Camp Ho Nok. The private road is gated but provides access to the Cache National Forest and North Fork Wilson Creek Trail/FST-348 and FST-331. There is ample parking space here. The elevation at this road junction is 6,200 feet.
Hike up the relatively steep North Fork Wilson Creek Trail/FST-348 to its junction with the Highline ATV Trail/FST-316. The North Fork of Wilson Creek is bone dry except for a short section higher up that is wet. Go L/S onto FST-316 and follow it briefly to reach the small, connecting ridgeline saddle between Peak 8666 and Soda Peak. The elevation at this saddle is 8,340 feet. This saddle sits at the base of the North Ridge of Soda Peak.
From the small saddle, bushwhack southward up the ridge crest. You will find an old, weak trail initially. The trail disappears and you must bushwhack your way up the ridge. Higher up, an ATV trail appears on the L/E side of the ridge crest. Follow it to the open summit area. The terrain on this climb is thick veg + forest early on. The ridge, as is often the case, has a split personality after that—with open terrain on the L/E side of the ridge crest and thick forest on the ridge crest itself and on its R/W side.Unfortunately, the open terrain is thick, tall veg with blowdown scattered about near the ridge crest. The summit of Soda Peak has a large cairn with a huge, tall post in it.
Northeast Face, Class 2
Same as for the North Ridge Route. It is possible to follow the Highline ATV Trail/FST-316 southward to the base of the East Face of Soda Peak and to bushwhack through thick forest to the open summit area.
From the summit of Soda Peak, descend NE through open terrain (briefly) then down through thick forest with ample blowdown. You will eventually intersect the Highline ATV Trail/FST-316. Follow the trail northward to its junction with the North Fork Wilson Creek Trail/FST-348 (signed as “Wilson Canyon Trail”). Descend FST-348 to the NF boundary and follow the private access road eastward for 0.4 mile to its junction with Eightmile Canyon Road.