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Photo Gallery Number Eleven

Havasu Falls

Havasu Falls.

Ten miles into the first of 5 days of hiking brings this amazing image to your eyes. Havasu Falls is one of several magnificent waterfalls found in Havasu Canyon, located in the western portion of the Grand Canyon. Havasu is part of the Havasupai Indian Reservation, and therefore special permission is required to hike here. In September of 2002, my friend Lou and I got that permission, as part of a group led by the Grand Canyon Field Institute.

Along the Trail

Of course, before we reached Havasu Falls, we had to hike those ten miles. The first mile took us down a precipitous decline deep into the side canyon. The next 9 miles were of a slower descent, and were punctuated at frequent intervals by people from Supai Village riding horseback to and from their homes. There are no roads into the village, so the only means of transportation back and forth is either by foot, horseback or helicopter. In fact, Supai Village is the only remaining place in the United States that is still served by the Pony Express.

Wigleeva watching over Supai  

As you approach Supai Village, 8 miles into the hike, you see these rock formations overlooking the houses and fields. These are known as "Wigleeva" to the people there, and are considered sacred.

Mooney Falls

About a mile downstream from Havasu Falls is where you will find Mooney Falls. This waterfall, almost 200 feet in height, is actually taller than Niagra Falls. It got its name from an early explorer who died trying to reach its bottom.

And speaking of trying to reach its bottom, that's exactly what we did! Of course, Mooney didn't have this elaborate rock-wall ladder system. Even with this amenity, however, the climb down was certainly a bit frightful.

Climbing down Mooney Falls.

Muddy Waters

After our second day in, heavy rains many miles upstream from us resulted in the waters of Havasu Creek swelling and turning a very chocolate, muddy brown color. But by the end of our week, they had already cleared up, leaving us with this final image (below) to remember as we began hour hike out....

Farewell Havasu

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(Grand Canyon Rim to Rim)

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