Area Status: Open
The 5,969 acre Trapper Creek Wilderness protects nearly all of the Trapper Creek drainage and provides critical anadromous fish habitat in the Wind River watershed. Streams and waterfalls are plentiful among the steep forested canyons at lower elevations. The old-growth Douglas-fir forests that comprise the heart of this Wilderness provide habitat for a variety of wildlife such as spotted owls, pileated woodpeckers, goshawks, blacktail deer, Roosevelt elk, and black bear. Cougar, bobcat, and pine marten can be observed occasionally.
Soda Peaks Lake, the area's single body of water, is within a valley below Soda Peaks in the southwest corner of the Wilderness. Observation Peak, the site of a former fire lookout, offers sweeping views of Mount St. Helens, Mount Rainier, Mount Adams, and Mount Hood. Access to Observation Peak is via Trail #132, which has historic use prior to 1917.
Trails to Soda Peaks Lake and Observation Peak total 12 miles. Another 12.4 miles of primitive trails, including Trail # 192.2 Trapper Creek, provide loop opportunities through the middle of the Wilderness. These primitive trails (including: #132B Shortcut, #195 Big Slide, #198 Sunshine, #202 Rim, #209: Deer Cutoff) are maintained to a lesser standard and can be challenging to follow.
At a Glance
||Wilderness permits are required for entry into all Gifford Pinchot National Forest Wildernesses. The self-issuing permits are free and are available at all trailheads leading into these Wildernesses, and at Forest Service Ranger Stations.
||Wilderness Regulations Apply
||Some trailheads require a valid recreation pass. Check our Recreation Passes and Permits page for details.
||Mount Adams Ranger District
Other Trails within Trapper Creek Wilderness
Trails #132, #132A, #133, and #192.1 were constructed by the Forest Service and are maintained annually. All other trails in the area were constructed and are maintained by the Mazamas, a mountaineering organization based out of Portland, Oregon. These trails are classified as "primitive: and are steep and sometimes difficult to follow:
Nearby Areas of Interest
Government Mineral Springs Campground and Recreation Area
Mineral water is available at Iron Mike well at Government Mineral Springs. In addition to the mineral springs, several privately owned summer homes are located in the area under a special use permit to the Forest Service. Please be courteous if you hike near the homes.
Sister Rocks Research Natural Area
Sister Rocks Research Natural Area at the northwest corner of the Wilderness boundary was established in the mid-1950's as an example of a Pacific Silver Fir climax forest. Research studies are ongoing in the Natural Area. Huckleberries grow adjacent to the area to the south.
From Carson, WA follow the Wind River Road north for about 13.5 then miles take a left on Mineral Springs Road (Forest Road 3065).
To get to Trapper Creek Trailhead take the first right on Forest Road 5401.
Trailheads/Trails that access Trapper Creek Wilderness
Bare Mountain, Termination Point. Download free U.S. Forest Service Topo maps.
Buy maps online
Go to the National Forest Store.
Go to Wilderness.net for online maps and other important Wilderness information.