As winter is ending here in Southern California, I find myself missing all my desert camping adventures. So I thought I’d blog about my adventure hiking and camping at the bottom of the Grand Canyon in Havasu Falls. It was a truly majestic 3 days exploring the emerald waterfalls and hiking along the roaring spring that lead into the Colorado River.
So back in my University days, a friend of mine told me about hiking the Grand Canyon in Havasu Falls. I’m from Arizona and have been to the Grand Canyon many times, however I had never hiked it or camped at the bottom. One day she called me up and said that her family trip this summer now had 2 opening (due to people dropping out from their previous made reservations). Camping is limited at the bottom of Havasu Falls since it’s a part of the Havasupai Native American Reservation. Reservations open up February 1st 2017 and fill up immediately. If you want to camp overnight I highly recommend setting an alarm to call first thing in the morning (928.448.2180).
You can take a helicopter in and out of the canyon, ride horses down instead of hiking, or hike the 10 miles. They also provide the option of having mules carry your equipment down to the campground if you so desire. You are required to check in with the Havasupai Tourist Office and pay the $35 entrance fee + tax and the $17/person/night fee for camping overnight. The hike is 10 miles to the campground and Havasu Falls. It is not a day hike unless you are able to hike 20 miles in a day. There is also a Lodge available for $145/ night for up to 4 people + tax, but you have to make reservations.
For my first overnight backpacking trip, I didn’t bring a tent which worked just fine. My friend and I slept in our sleeping bags under the stars! It was one of those bucket list things…sleeping beneath the stars in the Grand Canyon! Wow! Our only minor disruption were the frogs leaping around since we set up our sleeping bags near the stream. So I’d recommend setting up not so close, unless you want to sleep with the frogs!
As for the hiking…Havasu Falls to Moony Falls is a reasonable day hike from the camp ground (about a mile). From Moony Falls it’s a 3 mile hike to Beaver Falls and from there another 3 miles to the Colorado River. Some of the people we traveled with hiked down to the Colorado River, even tubed from Beaver Falls to the Colorado River. We were tired so didn’t make it to the Colorado River, but I heard it was incredible and beautiful! So if you are up for it and have the endurance, I’d recommend it. Overall the 3 days exploring the beautiful waterfalls was well worth the long hike and heat. We went in May where temperatures were 95-105 degrees down in the canyon. I’m from Arizona and use to desert hiking, so that wasn’t too bad. Here are some pictures from the trip! Enjoy and I hope you get a chance to visit the beautiful Havasupai Reservation!