Ida, Mount

elevation: 1,567 m.
height gain: 200 m. (from trailhead),  1,170 m. (from Foothill Road)
area: Salmon Arm,BC
map 82 L/11

We accessed Mount Ida from Ida FSR on the north side of the mountain. The start of the service road is along Foothill Rd SW, 369165. As of 2020 access to the service road is gated as it shares an entrance that is on private property; hence, it is no longer possible to drive to the trailhead via that route. However, it's still possible to hike/bike the 7-kilometer approach. If the gate is closed I recommend accessing the service road through the cemetery 100 meters past the gated entrance, 368166.  After finding a place to park, follow the paved road to the bush line and boot up to the service road from there. Several secondary branches exist along the main road; this may help: at 360151 go straight veering left, at 363152 switchback right, at 364150 switchback right, at 366145 go straight, at 377136 veer right, the trailhead is located at 380115.
***It is possible to access the trailhead via Deep Creek Rd.*** Refer to The Shuswap Trail for access description and current conditions.


At the West Peak trailhead.
Scramble: RT 3. Mount Ida is diminutive and overlooked by most scramblers but it grants decent views and a respectable challenge. The outing's duration will vary depending on the approach. A return trip from the trailhead is about 3 hours. From the West Peak trailhead follow the short ATV trail to an open area on the ridge. The trail follows the ridge leading to a buttress; we found a geocache at the foot of a rocky outcrop off to the side in a hollow, climber's right. From that point, the trail is none-existent and cliffs interrupt onward progress. This buttress, along with at least another, require circumventing on the south-west aspect. To continue from the first buttress, we backtracked to a notched narrow section in the ridge (see picture) and descended a talus slope. We sidehilled until we could regain the ridge beyond the buttress. Unfortunately, we had to repeat circumventing bluffs twice before reaching the short cliff on the ridge that presents the final challenge. The class 3+ scramble is brief but exposed. After carefully scrambling up the cliff, a quick hike took us to the highpoint of the treed summit plateau. This trail description is vague but it is sufficient for experienced scramblers with a keen sense of route finding. May I suggest taking good care of recognizing terrain you've travelled to facilitate your return. If you use flagging tape, remember to retrieve them on your way back. Happy trails!
salmon arm below

View towards Salmon Arm from an open area on the ridge.

ridge looks easy

The ridge looks deceivingly easy at the start.

keith and isabelle

Keith and his daughter Isabelle are my hiking partners today.

narrow section

A notched narrow section in the ridge.

first buttress

In little time, we stand upon the first buttress.

drop off

At the first buttress, bluffs interrupt progress on the ridge proper.

dropping off

Descending on the south-west aspect to circumvent the buttress and regain the ridge further.

looking back

Looking back at the ridge.


Circumventing the buttress.
Picture courtesy of Keith Wilkie.

regaining the ridge

Regaining the ridge.

getting closer

After another detour off the ridge, we are getting closer to the scramble that precedes the summit.

ridge section

A tame section on the ridge.

bluff we detoured

Looking back at the other buttress we circumvented.

short scramble

The final challenge ahead is a brief class 3+ scramble.

tackling the scramble

Keith and Isabelle are tackling the scramble.

topping out

Isabelle near the top of the scramble.
Picture courtesy of Keith Wilkie.

taking up the rear

I bring up the rear.
Picture courtesy of Keith Wilkie.

at the top

At the top.

summit plateau

It's possible to extend the outing and hike to the far end of the mountain.

downclimbing the crux

Downclimbing the crux.
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