Follow Wilson Canyon Trail about 0.55 miles.
Named after a trapper that chased a bear into this canyon. The bear turned on Wilson. Without a charge in his muzzle-loading rifle he climbed a juniper. The bear dragged him out and killed him. Lesson learned.
Rumors crested around 1914 as reports surfaced of old man Wilson haunting the canyon. Scribbled legend has it spooked horses pranced in terror as the apparition circled noisily. Locals Tex Ownby and Wright Clark fiddled a tale the noise was the rifle dragging around, slamming against the rocks.
Hang a left
Take a left on Jim Thompson Trail and follow for two tenths of a mile. Jim was just a rancher, this segment is safe!
Steamboat Rock is a half mile off trail up the slickrock. Cairns may help if stumble upon the correct set.
Check out the final route up the rock. Switch the map to satellite for a good overview. For the intrepid researcher that reads descriptions, here is the full route. The out-n-back is a 2.6mi / 810aeg hike.
Too scary for some. Similar to playing around on Papago Buttes in Phoenix, one must be careful and know their limits. It is a class 3 scramble if you find the correct route. Which means you could die from a fall. If it seems to risky don't do it. Remember it's usually more difficult getting down than up.
I haven't done the top. I'd imagine it's class four or above. Nevertheless the views from near the top are well worth the moderate effort for this hike. It's amazing it hasn't become more popular.
Many of the Sedona area hikes are short tourist jaunts. Bruce and I incorporated Steamboat into an 18 mile loop in 2012. Lack of waterfalls and dancing girls will keep this one under the radar.
This hike is listed as One-Way.
When hiking several trails on a single "hike", log it with a generic name that describes the hike. Then link the trails traveled, check out the example.
WARNING! Hiking and outdoor related sports can be dangerous. Be responsible and prepare for the trip. Study the area you are entering and plan accordingly. Dress for the current and unexpected weather changes. Take plenty of water. Never go alone. Make an itinerary with your plan(s), route(s), destination(s) and expected return time. Give your itinerary to trusted family and/or friends.