Havasupai Falls

Havasupai (Havasu Falls) might just be one the the most beautiful places on Earth. There are five major waterfalls at Havasupai - Upper Navajo Falls, Lower Navajo Falls "Rock Falls", Havasu Falls, Mooney Falls and Beaver Falls. In between is an endless playground of pools, small falls, caves and beautiful nature to explore. If you're interested in making this trip, you've undoubtedly seen the countless amount of gorgeous photographs taken in this area. It really, truly looks like the photos in real life. No more convincing needed? There are definitely better ways to make this trip both more enjoyable and manageable so let's starting planning your trip.

First, thing's first. A permit it required to go down to the falls and sleep down there whether you camp or stay at the lodge in Supai Village. Permits are typically are booked out about three months in advance if not more.

  • Camping: 1-928-448-2121, 1-928-448-2141, 1-928-448-2174, or 1-928-448-2180
  • Camping Office Hours: 7am - 7pm
  • Lodge: 1-928-448-2111 or 1-928-448-2201

When to Go
The bottom of the Canyon can get pretty warm in the summer with reprieve offered only by trees and the cool water. April through through July are months where the water is enjoyable to swim in and the bottom of the Canyon is moderate in temperature. End of July and August is monsoon season in Arizona. This can be a tricky time to come because the river can rise and often times visitors are evacuated due to flash floods. September, October and March are also moderate weather months at the Canyon, which is great for camping, but the water might be a little on the cold side if swimming. November through February are not recommended if you plan on being in the water. Camping will be cold and perhaps staying at the lodge might be a more comfortable choice if you're not used to camping in cooler temperatures.

Getting there
Here are directions to Hualapai Hilltop, which is where your adventure begins:

There are three main ways to get to the falls: hike, horse ride or helicopter ride. The hike down from Hualapai Hilltop is to the Supai Village is about 8 miles, then another 2 miles to the waterfalls and campground. The helicopter leaves from Hualapai Hilltop as well and is about a 5 minute ride to Supai Village. The horse ride from Hualapai Hilltop is about 3 hours to the village, but you must have minimal horse riding experience to reserve a horse.

Tip: If you want to hike down but not carry a pack full of camping gear, food, water, etc., there are pack mules that can bring your gear down for your from the Hilltop to the campground.

How long should you stay?
Most people like to stay 2-3 nights. That will give you enough time to visit all the falls at a leisurely hiking and playing in the water pace. Also this is typically the amount of food and water supplies that most visitors are willing to hike in with. If you're making use of a pack mule, stay as longer. It really does feel like paradise.

Camping Office Hours: 7am - 7pm Lodge: 1-928-448-2111 or 1-928-448-220
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A Day At The Canyon from John Burcham Photography. John Burcham is a commercial, editorial photographer based out of Flagstaff, AZ. You can see more of his work at www.johnburcham.com