Steamboat Rock Trail is a 3.8 mile moderately trafficked loop trail located near Electric City, WA that features beautiful wild flowers and is rated as moderate. The trail is primarily used for hiking, walking, nature trips, and birding and is accessible from March until October.
We camped near this park and decided to hike the infamous Steamboat Rock. (If you are looking for a place to camp in this area, I highly recommend camping at Steamboat Rock. Although we didn’t camp here, we spent most of our time taking advantage of the amenities they have to offer.) Our first attempt to hike Steamboat was with a group that had kids aged from 3 years to 13. The first part of the hike from the parking lot to the climb was a simple task for them, however, once we reached the point of incline we decided to turn back. There is a section that requires some maneuvering and scaling of the mountain that we thought was a little too much for the younger crowd. I will note though, not all parents heeded the same caution. I saw kids as young or younger headed up the trail. Another thing that surprised me was the amount of people that hiked this trail without any water. (This trail looks to have its busy days, so if your hiking to get away from the crowds, the first part of this hike will not be pleasant, however once you get to the top, you can venture away from humans as needed.) Our second attempt was the next day. Leaving the younger crowd behind, this time I hiked it with myself and three kiddos aged 11-13. Pay close attention to the surrounding area when you hike from the parking lot to the Mountain, there are plenty of deer that like to hang out under the few trees that offer shade. We saw more that 6 mule deer just in that short hike. Also note that this hike is like walking on the beach. The first section of the trail is mostly sand. Once reaching the "climb" area, also pay close attention, although it looks like only one trail up, there is a trail almost directly next to the "most traveled" that offers a much easier access. We didn’t notice this easier access until our descent. It was more obvious from this point of view. Once you reach the top, you have the option to take the trail to the left or the right. We opted for the right since we could tell that it was give us a great view. It did not disappoint. The pictures just do not give it justice. There are quite a few trails to follow depending on what area you want to see, if you want to do a longer hike, you can make a day of it. We opted for a short hike, vowing to hike it again soon to access areas we didn’t explore yet. Remember you are in rattlesnake country. We did see one pretty good size snake on our hike. We heard a few others that we didn’t wait around to see. Having lived in rattlesnake country for most of my life, they have a distinct sound that can't be mistaken.
Fun and challenging
It was an easy and beautiful hike. There is a lot of fallen shingle on the trail but it's easy to walk over. We saw lots of kids and dogs. Recommend swimming in the lake post hike, so refreshing!
The trail is on top of a butte. The beginning is steep and slippery because of shale rock on the trial. Once on top, it is easy with views of the river and surrounding countryside. Great for early hiking.