In Call of the Canyon ($7 per vehicle), about 7 miles north of downtown Sedona on State 89A, the West Fork Trail offers up completely different scenery in the form of chiseled sandstone cliffs sliced down the center by Oak Creek. The creek itself makes this Sedona's most popular hike in hotter months ― a good reason to take the 6.5-mile round-trip trail now. Wear waterproof hiking boots, as you'll be crossing the creek via steppingstones at several points.
Make your way back into town on the early side so you can beat the crowd at the Cowboy Club Grille & Spirits ($$$; 241 N. State 89A; 928/282-4200), where the pork back ribs draw a loyal following even in the slow season. Finish guiltlessly with a warm individual chocolate cake, knowing that you've earned it.
Maps to go
The Sedona–Oak Creek Canyon Chamber of Commerce Visitor Center (8:30–5 Mon–Sat, 9–3 Sun; 331 Forest Rd.; www.visitsedona.com or 928/282-7722) has trail maps and brochures on area attractions.