Waterfalls of Havasupai
Havasu Canyon's allure is the blue-green waterfalls that captivate and enchant many people around the world. These waterfalls are located beyond the village and can be seen and heard as you hike down to the Campgrounds.
The water temperature of about 70 degrees remains relatively constant throughout the year. It's high mineral content and carbonate precipitate account for the pools and natural dams. The in-frequent floods repeatedly destroy many of these natural dams, but day by day and year by year they are constantly being reformed.
When water percolates through the limestone layer it picks up high concentrations of carbon dioxide. This, in turn, can dissolve carbonate rocks in the groundwater. Once out of the ground and the water is no longer pressurized, the carbon dioxide is released into the atmosphere, allowing the dissolved calcium carbonate to precipitate to form striking travertine benches.
Major Changes have occurred since August 2008 when a significant flash food swept through the canyon bypassing the old Navajo Falls, while creating two new falls. It is natural for the falls to change over time, as evidenced by the ancient crests lining Havasu and Mooney falls. The pools will regain their previous shapes as the process repeats itself as it has been doing for millennia; and sometimes with man's help to speed up the process.
Five Fantastic Waterfalls
Few other places in the world offer the unique opportunity to visit 5 major waterfalls so close together. The beautiful blue-green water of Havasu Creek tumbles over these five major waterfalls:
Upper Navajo Falls ("New Navajo")
Lower Navajo Falls ("Rock Falls")
The most photographed waterfall in the Grand Canyon is the world renowned Havasu Falls. Half mile from Navajo Falls, you hear Havasu Falls long before you see it. It thunderous roar echos off the sheer walls surrounding this idealic place.
Havasu Falls has also been changed by the recent floods. The crest is now flowing out of the right side of a previous higher crest, thus no longer sporting 2 flows. But time will gradually allow build up of new travertine deposits as nature continues to reshape the flow.
Havasu Falls provides an excellent swimming hole and offers relaxation in the sun or shaded by one of the many cottonwood trees. Photo opportunities abound. You can sometimes find yourself alone here around dinner time, for some one-on-one with nature's power and beauty.
Mooney Falls is at the far end of the campground (about 1 mile from Havasu Falls) and drops 190' into a turquoise pool. Surrounded by a travertine veil where the creek has flowed many years gone by.
There is a trail leading to the base of Mooney Falls that winds down the shoulder of the cliff, then darts into a tunnel, out again for a nice view of the falls, then back into the rocks through the second tunnel which erupts through the face of the cliff about 70' above the floor of the canyon. From there, steps chiseled into the rocks and heavy chains securely fastened to spikes in the walls ease your descent until you reach a wooden ladder or two that allow you to cross the final 10-12' drop. Mist from the falls constantly blows on the ladders and steps making it a bit tricky to maintain your footing. Taking it slow is good advice here.
Once you've reached the bottom of Mooney Falls you will be enticed to take a dip in the wide pool where swimming is a no-brainer. Mooney typically gets more shade than Havasu Falls, and can feel a bit chillier.
Head up before dusk so your ascent will be as safe as possible.