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Hike to Colorado river, past Beaver falls

North Brunswick...
Level Contributor
103 posts
93 reviews
Hike to Colorado river, past Beaver falls


I have searched so many places and read so many trip-reports of the people who visited Havasupai. But, i'm interested in hiking all the way to the colorado river, past the Beaver falls; and I haven't got much info about it.

If anyone have done this, or know anything about it - please advice me. What is a better month to do this hike? What special things to be keep in mind? etc..

p.s. - I know most of all details about permits, hike distance, preparation etc. TILL beaver falls only.

37 replies to this topic
Santa Fe, New Mexico
Level Contributor
8,601 posts
86 reviews
1. Re: Hike to Colorado river, past Beaver falls

I have not done this hike since the floods several years ago...The trail previous, was primitive with numerous unbridged crossings and few, if any, places to camp...The route is exposed to periods of high water...Without many places to safely pause without climbing skills...I would suppose your camping permit and fees paid to the Havasupi Tribe would cover hiking time om their lands...As reservation information seems hard enough to get from The tribal office... I sorta doubt you will have much luck on specific Issues... Spring & summer would be most exposed times on the trail down to the Colorado River...carracar

Tucson, Arizona
Destination Expert
for Tucson, Arizona, Northern Mexico
Level Contributor
17,831 posts
90 reviews
2. Re: Hike to Colorado river, past Beaver falls

Reports in trip reports have been that hiking to Beaver Falls and beyond is very difficult and requires walking in the creek at times. Advice in trip reports has been don't do it.

Level Contributor
1,998 posts
189 reviews
3. Re: Hike to Colorado river, past Beaver falls

Quite a few years ago, on a river trip, I walked from the river to Beaver Falls. There was some rock scrambling and some wading in the river. This was before the flood, so the flood may have affected the lower areas of the Havasu Canyon; but before the flood, this stretch of Havasu Canyon wasn't extremely difficult. (Some members of our group hiked all the way from the river to Mooney Falls--we had nearly an entire day in the area.)

Salt Lake City, Utah
Destination Expert
for Utah
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16,547 posts
170 reviews
4. Re: Hike to Colorado river, past Beaver falls

From what I could tell the river below Mooney was unaffected by the floods and is still pretty pristine. I was hoping we could make it to Beaver but after the hike down from the village where we stayed and some time playing at Havasu and then the climb down to Mooney and again some time there playing by the time we really got headed down the river to Beaver we were getting tired. Plus the trail was not clear and if you got off what trail there was it was bush whacking through the willows. I would love to know how close we came but it was just too hard to know how far we hiked.

So if you plan to do it my advice is to give yourself all day just for that.

Phoenix, Arizona...
Level Contributor
86 posts
9 reviews
5. Re: Hike to Colorado river, past Beaver falls

I would plan it as an all day excursion. We made it to Beaver and the tribe park ranger advised against going to the river at 2pm when we arrived at Beaver.

San Diego...
1 post
6. Re: Hike to Colorado river, past Beaver falls

I just did the hike with a group of experienced hikers who have done it in the past. 12 miles each way (according to the GPS). Very strenuous hike. 14 hour day with a one hour break a the Colorado river. Some in the group (myself included) needed assistance scrambling up and down the cliffs, especially at Beaver Falls. Ranger told us later there is an alternate trail past Beaver Falls that does not include climbing the canyon. Frequent river crossings marked (usually) by rock cairns. Trail is not easy to follow and is best done as a group with somone who has done it before. Bring headlamps as you may be climbing Mooney Falls in the dark on the way back (as we did.) Like many places in this area, posted distances seem to be "as the crow flies" as my GPS always seemed to record a longer trek than expected.

Aberdeen, New Jersey
Level Contributor
1 post
7 reviews
7. Re: Hike to Colorado river, past Beaver falls

My friends and I hiked to the Colorado River from our camp ground in one day Sept 2013. Budget 4 to 4.5 hrs each way. We were told that if you did not reach the Colorado River by 1PM (1300), turn around at point. Once you leave Havasupai and enter the Grand Canyon National Park, you are basically on your own. We saw only 3/three people on the trek. Bring some type of water treatment, food/water and whatever else Macguyver would carry. This is back country trekking so be prepared. Leave trekking poles behind as rock scrambling and walking in the Havasu River is a good part of the hike. The trails are not marked, so be watchful for the cairns left by previous hikers. I am thankful that one of my friends is an experienced hiker who is a former Eagle Scout. The hike was awesome and I am glad that have done it. Hope this helps...Keith B. (New Jersey)

Union City...
1 post
8. Re: Hike to Colorado river, past Beaver falls

We were there in early June on a river trip. I was one of the organizers and asked the guides if we could spend some time in Havasu Canyon. They said yes and so we hiked up to Beaver Falls. (4 miles) I took some magic before the hike & was flyin'. We got to the falls and the guides had a very cool surprise for me. We swam up to the falls in the middle, they said to swim down 10 feet and then back behind the fall 10 feet and look for an opening. I am an advanced swimmer with my goggles on so it was easy. I came up into a cave called the Green Room. The sun reflecting off the bottom of the river creates a green color that I will never forget. The cave only fits 4-5 people. I felt so privledged to be in this cave where the Havasupi used to do manhood rituals with peyote. If you ever get a chance, get to the Green Room, but be very careful and only do it if you are a confident swimmer.

Edited: 19 June 2014, 17:11
Window Rock, AZ
Level Contributor
5 posts
28 reviews
9. Re: Hike to Colorado river, past Beaver falls

We did this hike on July 22, 2014 with a group of six with the youngest being 14 and the oldest 52. Left at 5:15 a.m. from the campgrounds and the trek to Beaver Falls was actually pretty quick. There were four creek crossings between Mooney and Beaver. At Beaver Falls, there is a ladder to go up the 8 foot wall and at the very top and after a small bit of walking past the Beaver Falls access, there is a sign stating the end of tribal lands and the beginning of Grand Canyon National Park. Beyond this point, you climb down the trail back to the creek - don't cross the creek yet but continue downstream to pick up the trail. It is very important to remember where you climbed down from because you'll need to know where to climb up on your return!! From this point, there are four more creek crossings - there are one or two instances where you do walk in the water but you don't actually cross the creek. All the creek crossings are doable, the highest it got on me was just above my knees and I'm 5'8". It was very hot on the return especially from Beaver Falls and we took time to cool off in the creek. Do take a water filter system as I easily drank 4 liters of water, and remember to take snacks! We came back to the campground by 3:30 p.m. but my children returned earlier at 1 p.m.!

North Brunswick...
Level Contributor
103 posts
93 reviews
10. Re: Hike to Colorado river, past Beaver falls

Wow...I am amazed to get response on my almost 1.5yrs old msg!!! I am really thankful to all members who have shared their experience.

@Chizzi – It is encouraging to read your experience. We really appreciate your response. This makes me to think about coming back to canyons (but for Havasupai only) for the fifth time ;-)

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