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LuAnn & Craig at Hualapai HilltopThe destination for millions of visitors each year is the awesome grandeur of the Grand Canyon, and many hiking opportunities are found within the boundaries of Grand Canyon National Park. But large crowds are not my idea of a quality hiking experience. Fortunately, one of the top ten treks of the world is located on the southwestern corner of the Canyon, a quieter, less accessible region. Havasu Canyon is often described using references to Utopia, Paradise, Shangri-la and other mythical places, as its natural beauty defies description by words and photographs alone. The scenic splendor of this secluded destination can only truly be experienced by those willing to spend the effort. The easy to moderate hike begins with an eight mile trek to the remote Native American village of Supai, tribal headquarters of the Havasupai people. And that's just the beginning! From Supai, the remainder of the trail passes by four spectacular blue-green waterfalls, dozens of smaller falls, and some of the most awesome scenery in the Grand Canyon, eventually reaching it's terminus at the Colorado River, about ten miles beyond the village. The entire length of the trail is 17 miles, with difficult sections beyond Mooney Falls, but if you turn back at that point it's a relatively easy 22 mile round trip hike.

Sign to SupaiThe Havasupai (pronounced “have a soup pie”) Indian Lands extend over a decent of 3,000 feet to the bottom of Havasu Canyon at the Colorado River. The trailhead - Hualapai (pronounced "wal a pie") Hilltop - is located at the end of Indian Route 18, off Historic Route 66 near Peach Springs, AZ. Havasupai means “people of the blue green water.” The tribe has been in this region for more than 1,000 years. Throughout their history they have farmed within the canyon during summer and hunted on the mesa tops during winter. In June 1880 the Havasupai Indian Land was established with 518 acres in the canyon, later enlarged to 188,077 acres in 1975 in a bill signed by President Gerald Ford. Most all of the tribal members live in Supai Village. Tourism is helping the tribe’s living standards, although it is difficult because there are only three ways in and out of the community... by foot, horse or helicopter. Still, each year more than 12,000 visitors come to see this Land of towering cliffs, breathtaking waterfalls and calming pools of turquoise water. It is indeed, a paradise for the senses!

The Havasupai believe that the Grand Canyon is the origin of the human race so it is a sacred area. It's okay to take pictures of the environment but not of people or homes. You are expected to stay on the trails, respect whatever you find, and clean up after yourself. Havasupai Lodge and Havasu Campground are the only places to stay once you have hiked down from the Hilltop. The guest capacity for both is limited and accommodations MUST be reserved in advance. A permit is also required before making the trip, and none will be issued without first obtaining reservations at either the Lodge or Campground. This was a BIG issue for us, because LuAnn had already made our flight reservations and it turned out there were no accommodations available at either the Lodge or Campground. A master at resourcefulness, LuAnn managed to get in contact with a family who lived in the village and arranged for us to camp in their backyard! The trek was on!

Thursday, April 8th, 2004
Peach Springs, Arizona

The view along historic Route 66 near Seligman, AZThe nearest commercial airport to Havasu Canyon is in Flagstaff, Arizona. From Flagstaff you would travel down I-40 to Seligman, AZ (pronounced "sa lig men"), making sure you gas up there because it's the last chance you'll have before arriving at the trailhead, about an hour and a half away. From Seligman, you continue west on famous US Route 66, past the Grand Canyon Caverns (the last civilization you’ll see) where many people stay for their last night before making the final leg of the journey. Beyond, further west on Route 66, you will turn right on Indian Route 18, heading north about 62 miles to the end of the road. This is Hualapai Hilltop and the last pavement you’ll see until you return.

Hoover DamLuAnn and I were not traveling to the trailhead via Flagstaff. We began our trip on Tuesday with a three hour drive to Charlotte, North Carolina. Wednesday morning we made our way to the airport for our flight to Las Vegas, stopping briefly in Chicago to change aircraft. We did a bit of sightseeing in Vegas, enjoyed a buffet dinner, and lost a few dollars in the slots. Today we set out in our rented Chevy Trailblazer for the Hualapai Lodge in Peach Springs, Arizona, about four and a half hours away, taking time enroute on US93 to visit the awesome Hoover Dam for a photo op (even saw a cool Roadrunner quickly cross the road!). Then lunch in Kingman, AZ and finally to the Lodge for our last evening of comfort before heading off for the trail tomorrow morning. We arrived fairly early in the afternoon and found that there's really not much to do in Peach Springs. The Lodge has a restaurant and there's a small grocery store across the street but that's pretty much it. We were ready for a beer, and since alcoholic beverages are not available within the Hualapai Indian Reservation, we decided to drive another 30 miles east on Route 66 to Seligman.

Westside Lilo's Cafe in Seligman, AZMuch better! We gassed up the Trailblazer and asked the attendant where we could find a decent place for a beer. Westside Lilo's Cafe was the answer, just a few hundred feet down the road. The cafe was, well, a cafe, and we drank our brews at the lunch counter. The folks there were very friendly and told us of a few places nearby to shop for LuAnn's interest: Native American handicrafts. After that we headed back to the Lodge in Peach Springs. As it turned out, the Lodge was pretty nice though unfortunately close to some very active railroad tracks. More on that in a moment. We spent some time looking around their gift shop, then went across the street to the store for a few last-minute supplies. It was now close to dinnertime and we considered giving their restaurant a try, but we were intrigued with the Cafe in Seligman and decided to go back for dinner. It was a good decision. The food was excellent!

We returned to the Lodge and crashed. Tomorrow was the big day, with at least an eight mile hike ahead of us. It was lucky we were so tired, no doubt because our bodies were still on Eastern time and all the running around we'd done, because the trains were relentless. About every 15 minutes a train would roar by the Lodge, it's horn blaring at every crossing. And there seemed to be a lot of crossings too. No wonder the room had TWO complete window frames sandwiched together!

Friday, April 9th, 2004
Hualapai Hilltop to Supai

Junction of Indian Route 18 and US Route 66We were up at 6:00 AM. In-room coffee is always a plus! We showered, checked out the local weather forecast on television, packed up our stuff and loaded the truck. This time there was no deliberation... breakfast in Seligman! We knew going to Lilo's was going to delay us a bit but it was well worth it. I had an omelet and LuAnn, steak and eggs. Yummy! After breakfast we filled up the Trailblazer, then went to the local hardware store to pick up a tarp for the tent, something we'd forgotten before leaving for the trip. It was now about 8:45 and we turned the vehicle back west on Route 66 towards Indian Route 18 and Hualapai Hilltop, from here about an hour and a half away. Another nice day, 55 degrees and mostly sunny, just a few clouds here and there. Indian Route 18, the only road leading to the Hilltop, is a good road, paved yet pretty curvy and LuAnn is WILD as she speeds along the winding road. I hesitate to call it a scenic highway - mostly desert scrub - but there are some beautiful sections, including stands of pine trees reminiscent of the northern woods. Open range cattle and antelope are often seen as well. The road ends at the edge of a shear 1000 foot cliff, complete with a 200 car parking lot, an extensive horse pack station, and even a small heliport!

The view from Hualapai HilltopWe arrived at a little after 10:00 AM. To say it was spectacular doesn't do justice... The views of Hualapai Canyon are phenomenal, breathtaking... better than we imagined! The white sandstone cliffs of the canyon just fall away revealing the sage covered canyon floor below. The lower layers are an intense red rock that contrasts sharply with the layers above. We parked the truck along the road, just outside of the parking lot, which was full. Surprisingly there were a ton of vehicles here! And a lot of activity. Several groups were preparing to start their hikes, horse pack trains coming and going, and about every 20 minutes a red helicopter buzzing to and from Supai and the Hilltop. We put on our gear, locked up the Trailblazer, leaving it and our luggage behind at 10:45.

Heading down the mountain from the HilltopFrom the end of the parking area (5200 feet elevation) the trail drops dramatically down into the canyon via a series of switchbacks cut into the cliff, a descent of more than a thousand feet in the first mile and a half to the dry wash in the bottom of Hualapai Canyon. The path is quite rough with a lot of rocks on it, worthy of a moderate rating going down and certainly difficult for the return trip, but the views are incredible! Once at the bottom, the trail flattens out and is easy to walk. Hualapai (as opposed to Havasu, which joins it later) is a dry canyon that has certainly seen a great deal of water in the past. The evidence is everywhere: In the hollows carved into the canyon walls, in the rounded stones lying about, in the gravel floor.

Inside the canyonFor the next 5.5 miles the trail descends gently along the Hualapai Canyon wash, providing the feeling that we just jumped into a Western! There are few signs but the path is fairly obvious, as most of the time you're just following the dried up creek bed. Clues that you're going the right way are frequent. Fellow hikers, like us, heading to Supai, and once in awhile an encounter with those on their way out of the canyon. There are also the pack horse teams traveling to and from the village. Hearing the approach of hoof beats signals that it's time to stand to the side and let them pass.

As the red walls of the canyon grow on either side of us the available shade increases, offering some nice rest stops under the overhangs. Since it was April, starting the hike as late as we did was not a big deal but if you made the trip during the summer months we would definitely recommend you start out around daybreak. By 11:00 AM it will get very hot in the canyon.

Havasu Creek just outside of SupaiAfter walking for about 3 hours we began to hear the sound of running water and noticed an increase in vegetation. We knew it was the point where Havasu Canyon joins Hualapai Canyon, at roughly 3200 feet elevation and 6.5 miles from the Hilltop. Here the character of the canyon bottom changes as a gushing creek emerges from the ground at Havasu Springs, just beyond the junction of the two canyons. The creek has created a relatively lush landscape in sharp contrast to earlier sections of the trail, irrigating the land and allowing a profusion of desert plants and trees to grow. From this point on, Havasu Canyon is beautiful, its weathered red sandstone walls contrasting with the blue-green waters of Havasu Creek and the welcome shade of willow, tamarisk and cottonwood trees along its banks. Turning downstream beside the river, it is just 1.5 miles to the village of Supai. By "following the creek downstream, crossing the bridge, and staying to your right," we easily found our way into town. It was 3:15 PM, our journey taking four and a half hours.

The "King & Queen" towering above SupaiThe village of Supai is located where Havasu Canyon broadens briefly, allowing for adequate farming. Yet the red sandstone walls of the canyon still tower over the village offering both shelter and security to the residents. It is not easy to miss the two columns protruding above the western wall of the canyon either. These are called the "King and Queen" and legend considers them protectors of the Havasupai people.

Supai village itself is a small community of about 600 people, inhabited since A.D. 1300 and relatively isolated from the rest of the world. Life here is rural and of a gentle pace. Horses and dogs are everywhere. The wooden homes are spread out over the available land, individual plots being defined by trees and fences. The village has its own school, church, clinic, police station, post office, general store, lodge, and café, as well as their own water and sewer system, but there are none of the amenities that we take for granted, like movie theaters and shopping malls. Many homes have satellite television and the town has telephone service and access to the Internet, but people can't just drive somewhere else for the afternoon.

The Wescogame HomeWe headed first to the Café to get something to drink. It was an unimposing building that nevertheless boasted air conditioning and somewhat distressed, fast-food restaurant-style booths. Next, on to the tourist office to register. There we were delighted to learn that our our hosts for the next two days, Leandra & Billy Wescogame and their two boys, Miles and Jose (pronounced "joe say"), lived in the village, actually right around the corner from the tourist office! This meant that we didn't have to go all the way to the campground, two miles distant, as we originally had thought. Time now to meet our host family. The Wescogames were very nice and wanted to make sure we had everything we needed. They had cleared an area in their yard for our tent and told us where to get running water. A privy nearby rounded out the accommodations.

Havasu Creek below SupaiWe knew that just a few miles beyond the village were some of the most beautiful waterfalls to be found anywhere in the world, and we were anxious to continue on the trail toward the campground to get our first glimpse. After dropping most of our equipment at the Wescogames, we hiked past the school, a little church, and several homes. One had a travel trailer in the yard, perhaps serving as extra rooms and we wondered how it had gotten down there, since there are no roads. Continuing on the trail, the canyon narrows again and begins to drop. Never far from Havasu Creek, the sound of its rapids fills the air. After about a mile we realized that the falls were farther away than we thought, so we decided to turn back, set up camp and have dinner. Tomorrow we would be back here hiking anyway.

Jose beside our tentAfter putting up the tent and stowing our gear inside, we went back to the Café to eat dinner, stopping first at the Nation's only mule-serviced post office to drop off some postcards to family and friends. Jose followed along and we sat outside on the patio eating, taking in all of the village activity. Sitting at the table next to us were two women and their daughters, one pair from North Carolina and the other from Virginia. Small world!

Tribal Program HostWe had noticed that people were gathering around a large bonfire at a cleared area across from the Café, so after dinner we went over to find out what was happening. It was a program for the visitors to Supai - the first in a long while - relating the history and cultural heritage of the Havasupai people. Darkness began to fall as the Leader spoke. Native dances were performed by different age groups of children, first the girls and then the boys, and in the end everyone was invited to participate in one final dance.

Then time to crash for the night. LuAnn's "two man" tent was cramped at best, especially with all of our equipment stuffed between and around us. Turns out that was the good part... After managing to finally fall asleep we were awakened by one of the Wescogame dogs jumping on the tent and causing the front support to come loose. That was followed by the intermittent night sounds of Supai, the whinnying, braying and barking of the village horses, mules, and dogs. And the Wescogame dog continued to jump on the tent. At about midnight, LuAnn and I had enough. This would be our first AND last night in Supai! Tomorrow we would go to the tourist office and put our name on the list to helicopter out late in the afternoon. Then we'd hike to the three most spectacular falls, Navajo, Havasu, and Mooney.

Saturday, April 10th, 2004
Supai to Mooney Falls - Supai to Hualapai Hilltop

The Supai Post OfficeOur pathetic night of "sleep" had ended and we walked through the village to the Café for coffee and breakfast - scrambled eggs, sausage and hash browns! The folks running the place seemed a bit grumpy for some reason today. And we were trying not to be, given the events of last night. If I ever come back here again, staying at the Lodge will be a requirement! It's another beautiful day, with relatively cloudless skies and temps due to warm into the 70s. After breakfast, we made our way to the tourist office to reserve our helicopter ride. Unfortunately it was Saturday and we quickly learned that the helicopter doesn't operate today. Damn! But wait! One of the Supai men chatting outside the office could take us out of the canyon on horseback. This would give us the time we needed to visit the Falls and still be able to get back to the Hilltop and to dinner and a decent night of sleep. We had already decided... Seligman would be our destination. The plan was for us to meet up with our horses and guide at 2:00 PM this afternoon. Yay!

Navajo FallsWe returned to our campsite, grabbed our day packs, and headed out for the falls. It was now 7:50 AM and lots of people are traveling to and from the village and campground this morning. It looked like the majority of them, donning backpacks, were leaving today. Following the main trail to the right of the river (there are many parallel trails), at around 8:30 and 1.5 miles into our hike we arrived at a place where there is a steep unstable bank with many warning signs. Here, off on the left side of the trail we could see the first major waterfall, Navajo Falls, through the trees. Beautiful. Spectacular! Named for a former Havasupai Chief (and not the tribe), this is not one waterfall but many, interspersed across a wide area along the trail, at its highest dropping 75 feet into the canyon.

Havasu FallsShortly thereafter there is a sign to the Havasu Campground and the trail descends gradually into a grove of cottonwood trees, then crosses the river over two wooden bridges. Just beyond the bridges the trail climbs a small rise and continues to parallel the creek. At 9:00 AM and another half mile down the trail we arrived at the top of Havasu Falls (3010 feet elevation). Just before the top of the falls the trail jogs to the left near the canyon wall. All along this section were views of Havasu Falls. This magnificent waterfall, split into two long streams, plunges 100 feet into a beautiful blue-green pool. It is a wonderful place that alone is worth the hike down from the Hilltop. The secondary stream was not flowing as forcefully as in the pictures we'd seen, but the totality of it was marvelous! The trail down to the base of the Falls was moderately steep, but quite wide. The water was crystal clear, with many mini-waterfalls in and around the base of the main one.

Havasu Falls from its base, through a cottonwood "snow"Looking up at the Falls from their base, the classic words one would use to describe them are only part of the story. It is the setting that makes them truly special. Havasu Creek has carved out a natural amphitheater over millions of years, perhaps 100 feet high and over 500 feet wide. The two cascades are perfectly centered within this arena, and of course one's attention is drawn to them naturally. Their waters, brilliant in sunlight, drop into a shadowed pool past ribbons of aged travertine on the rock walls. Catching the sun's rays, the mist billowed from the center of the pool, forced out by the power generated from the drop, resulting in the creation of an amazing rainbow. Beyond the main pool, the waters pour from small pool to smaller pool, a mini-Niagara Falls at one point, eventually continuing downstream. We took a short break and set out for the last waterfall we would visit, Mooney Falls.

The CampgroundHavasu Falls and Mooney Falls are located at opposite ends of the campground (2840 feet elevation), in a narrow part of the canyon with the now familiar towering red sandstone walls. The trail is beautiful here, following the course of Havasu Creek as it descends gradually along the canyon. Lined by large centuries-old cottonwood trees, the waters of the creek reflect the colorful canyon walls. The campground is actually spread out along the course of the creek for nearly a mile and a half, with many well-shaded campsites stretched out along both sides. There is one main collection of privies at the southern end of the campground, one small privy located at the center and one at the northern end. They are primitive, one-time porta-johns turned into pit toilets. Ugh... the Inca Trail facilities come to mind! We made our way through the campground to Mooney Falls, a mile downstream from Havasu Falls.

Mooney FallsAs the trail approaches the top of Mooney Falls a sign warns of the dangers of following the trail to the base of the falls. Heed the warning! A fall anywhere along this section would almost certainly result in death or severe injury. We chose not to go beyond the top of the Falls but have read that it requires the use of a series of chains that are anchored into the unstable limestone of the canyon walls. Be careful if you try it!

The view of Mooney Falls from the top is absolutely breathtaking! Tallest of the four major waterfalls, Mooney is a single waterfall dropping 200 feet to the bottom of the canyon and named for a man who fell to his death here (nice, eh?). Mooney Falls was perhaps not as spectacular as Havasu in terms of the total scene but awesome none the less. This would be the farthest we would travel along the Havasu Canyon trail and it was with some regret that we turned back towards Havasu and Navajo Falls, the village of Supai, and ultimately Hualapai Hilltop. Beyond us, in the opposite direction, was Beaver Falls and others, eventually reaching the Colorado river, some six miles distant.

The Daredevil at Havasu FallsWe stopped again at Havasu Falls, this time breaking for about 45 minutes. LuAnn, ever the adventurer, went for a swim in one of the pools. I enjoyed just sitting on a boulder and taking in the scene. Reflecting on the trail, both today and yesterday, overall I would rate it as easy. There were certainly steep sections, at the beginning and along our path today, but for the most part the trail slopes gently down to Mooney Falls. From there though, travel becomes more difficult as the trail meanders to its terminus at the Colorado. Given the beautiful scenery and the relative ease required to hike all the way to Mooney Falls, I would recommend this world top ten trek to anyone in decent shape. The trail is easy to follow and generally in good shape. And with the option of arriving at Supai via horseback or helicopter, the short three mile hike to Mooney from the village would be a piece of cake.

Awaiting our horses at the churchWe arrived back at Supai around noon. As we came into town we met the wife of the man who owned the horses taking us out of the canyon later this afternoon. She said if we wanted we could leave earlier. Would be better for them too, as they wanted to make sure they could complete the roundtrip before sunset. Since we had gotten back earlier than originally planned we agreed to be ready in an hour, 1:00 PM instead of 2:00. We stopped for a moment at the Café to get a soda (LuAnn also got some Indian Fry Bread), then back to the Wescogames to break camp. Up until now we had not told them of our change in plans, so we stopped by their house and gave them the news. We assured them that we were not expecting any money back and thanked them for their hospitality. Our packs filled, we set off for our rendezvous with the horses, with a quick stop back at the tourist office for a visit to the tribal museum.

LuAnn mounting her horseIt was now 1:00 PM and we were at the rendezvous point in front of the village church. Considering that our packs were pretty heavy, the horseman decided to put them on a separate horse. After saddling the horses and securing our packs to one of them, each of us was requested to climb up on a wall next to the church to get on our horse. Next the horseman led us through town, with me holding the reins of the horse carrying our packs. Finally, at the village border, our guide and the two of us left for the Hilltop. The horse carrying our packs was released and led the way, with me, our guide, and LuAnn following. Now I don't know about LuAnn, but this was my first experience at riding a horse for any length of time. And the few times that I did ride was on flat Midwest ground. Now I was looking at a three hour ride on a horse, in the Grand Canyon of Arizona, on an ever ascending canyon trail. Turned out it was a blast, though a certain part of me got pretty sore!

Our guideOur guide was fantastic! I'm sorry I don't remember his name but we talked throughout our journey to the Hilltop. He told us the legend of the "King and Queen," of a former frontier casino along the trail built into the side of the canyon wall and destroyed during an earthquake, of Native Americans in years past that used to push boulders off the cliffs so they wouldn't fall unexpectedly. It was fascinating stuff...

The pack horse was being difficult and wouldn't keep up a decent pace. The guide said the reason was that he didn't want to leave so late in the day and that's why he was dawdling. LuAnn's horse was not very cooperative either, and kept trying to stray along the edge of the trail. She pulled on the reins to return him to the trail, but he never seemed to tire of this little game. I'm sure it made for an interesting sight to those we passed.

Craig on the trailIn reverse of our hike yesterday, at first we followed the cottonwood-lined creek upstream through a relatively wide part of the canyon. Gradually the canyon narrowed, enveloping us within its dark red walls. The trail started to climb gradually. The vegetation became sparse. We traveled, alternately, through shadow and sunlight. Suddenly the scene changed, opening up as the narrow lower Havasu canyon transitioned into the wider upper canyon. Our ride now took us along the wide, dry stream bed of Hualapai Canyon under the bright Arizona sun, passing hikers on their way to Supai and those straining to return to the Hilltop.

Getting close to the HilltopThe trail climbs steeply for the last mile and a half to Hualapai Hilltop. Most of this last section of trail switchbacks up a narrow path to the rim of the canyon, rising like a steep staircase above us. Our guide cautions us to be careful of the pack trains coming down along this section of trail, being sure to stay towards the canyon wall.

As we encounter the first pack train, we hug the wall of the canyon, allowing the train to pass. This occurred several times until we reached the rim of the canyon and the top of the Hill. We finally arrived at 4:00 PM, and our guide was the first to dismount and tie his horse to the rail. I was next, and after he secured my horse I dismounted and went to get the truck.

Looking back at Hualapai Canyon for the last time...The Trailblazer was still intact and everything was as we left it. I fired up the vehicle and drove to the end of the parking lot where LuAnn was now off her horse and chatting with our guide. I backed the truck in and we loaded up our gear

Saying goodbye to our guide, we took our last look at Hualapai Canyon as we drove back down Indian Route 18 towards US Route 66. Our destination was Seligman, for a delicious shower, dinner, and sleep. Tomorrow we'd return to Vegas, with the memories of another world-class hike successfully behind us.

Distances From Hualapai Hilltop:

Supai Village 8.13 miles
Navajo Falls 9.5 miles
Havasu Falls 10 miles
Havasu Campground 11 miles
Mooney Falls 11.3 miles
Beaver Falls 13.1 miles
Colorado River 17 miles

Havasu Canyon Trail Elevation Profile


Some additional musings...

How do I contact the Tribe for trip information, prices, and reservations?

Check our their web site: http://www.havasupaitribe.com/

How much does the trip cost?

The prices change each season, but expect to pay about $20 up front to enter the Tribe's trails. In general the prices are higher than camping and backpacking on Federal and National parklands, but there are no rangers, etc., and the Tribe maintains the trails themselves. The scenery is incredible, and you can't put a price on that, so consider that when you are wondering if a trip will be too expensive. Staying at the Lodge will be more expensive than camping, and if you decide to horseback in or take the helicopter it will be expensive. It's a great trail with wonderful views and a relative easy hike in, so get a hold of a good backpack and at least take the trip down on your own.

How hard is the hike down to the campgrounds?

A typical Grand Canyon hiking trail has an elevation loss/gain of over 5000', while the trail down to Supai is only about a 2000' drop. The first mile is reasonably steep, while the rest of the trail follows a very slight down grade. The hike is not overly difficult, and is a good one for first-time backpackers, but depending on the time of year you will have to deal with the sun and heat. It will take about 4-6 hours to hike the ten miles each way, but don't try to go down and back in one day, it will NOT be fun.

There are things that can make this hike demanding, but with proper preparation, it shouldn't be a problem; bring plenty of water and sunscreen. The eight miles to Supai are mostly in the sun, without any water sources, and there is limited shade for relief. Carry plenty of water, 2 liters minimum. Use waterproof sunscreen to keep sweat from washing it off, and wear a large full-brimmed hat. These things should be in everyone's backpack.

I have children, how old should they be before I take them on a trip like this?

Well I don't have young children myself, but after talking with some friends who are backpacking parents, they agreed that a child should be 5-7 years old before you go out on a overnight trip with them. Younger children can be taken on day hikes starting at about 3.

When is the best time to travel the Havasu Canyon Trail?

Generally the best time to go is between April-May or Sept-Oct. It gets really hot there, so June-August can be a bear. May is their busiest month, and all times require reservations.

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