Absolutely, the best hiking experience I have ever had! Waterfalls, steep canyons, caves, mules, did I say waterfalls!
The Havasupai Indian Reservation is not part of the Grand Canyon National Park, but you cannot tell that from the scenery. From your very first step at the trailhead parking lot until your return at the end of your trip, you will be swiveling your head side to side to take it all in.
The water is a turquoise blue/green and the perfect way to refresh the tired legs and back after the 12 mile trek down to the campground. If you are as lucky as we were, you'll get a break from the summer heat. The temps were about 20 degrees below normal the weekend we made this trip.
Hitting the trail
The parking lot at the trailhead is stunning to say the least. It is perched more than 1000 feet above the valley floor and provides one of the best vistas of the trip.
The trail starts with a steep descent down the face of the box canyon to the valley floor by way of a series of switchbacks. If you have bum knees like I do from years of basketball, you will feel this descent! Be on the lookout for the approaching mules. They have the right-of-way, and won't stop to wait for you to move to the side.
Once you reach the valley floor, the trail bends to the north and follows the wash for 8 miles into the Indian town of Supai. Along the way, the canyon walls draw closer and the surroundings become more grand. You get a sense for the true size of the canyon walls when then tower hundreds of feet straight up as you make your way down the canyon.
There is more shade in this narrow section of trail. The sun doesn't have the angle to penetrate the canyon and it helps to keep temperatures down. In this slot section ( which starts at about mile 7), you really need to watch for the mule packs. As they approach, move to the canyon wall side and not the cliff side. The wrong move could be disastrous as these animals move through.
At the end of the slot section, it opens and the Havasu Creek comes in from the right side. As you cross the open expanse, following the trail as it curves to the left, you will hear the water for the first time. It comes into view as you enter the heavier vegetation. The town of Supai is close. You will follow the irrigation channel into Supai.
The two miles following the town of Supai are packed with waterfalls, blue-green water, and tons of photo opportunities. It's just 2 miles to Havasu Falls from Supai. The campground and Mooney Falls are just beyond that.
Tips: Stop by the general store to buy a post card to send home. It has to be mailed at the post office which is closed on the weekends. If you plan to leave before Monday, find a trusting local and pay them to mail it for you. That's what we had to do. The Supai Post Office is the only one is the country that still moves the mail by mule. It's the only way to get in or out of Supai with the exception of hiking it or going by helicopter.
All reservations must be made via telephone.
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
Reservations for popular times of year fill up months in advance, make your reservation as soon as possible.
All visitors staying at the campgrounds must stop in at the camping office to pay the required fees. The camping office is next to the grassy landing field, across from the cafe.
If you are with a large group, please designate a leader to take care of the fees and pick up tags. Lodge guests do not need to stop in the office, entry fees will be collected at the lodge.
Lodge Check in 9am - 5pm 7 days a week.
* Fees are subject to change without prior notice. The fees are non-negotiable. All fees are taxable by 10%.
Entrance Fee Permit
.....................$35.00* per person
Paid per person upon entry, no discounts.
This fee is charged one time per visit. All visitors entering the Havasupai Indian Reservation are required to pay this fee and check in upon arrival at the Tourist Office.
Note: Native Americans with a valid Tribal I. D. card or Tribal enrollment card are exempt from this fee.
.....................$17.00* per person / per night
Paid per person upon entry, no discounts.
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