Friday, August 30, 2013

Grand Canyon Adventure Part 3: Supai's Amazing Waterfalls

In case you missed it: Part 1 ~ Part 2


Today would be our one full day in Supai and we would visit as many of their waterfalls as we could.  We could tell that our bodies were shifting to west coast time because we actually slept until 6:30 am!  Since I'd gone to sleep around 8 and Mr. Helen and Little Helen said they'd put the lights out around 9, and none of us usually sleep that much, we figured that 8 mile hike the previous day had finally adjusted us.

We got dressed and went over to the restaurant to get coffee.  The coffee was hot and delicious and I ended up getting 2 large cups before I even ordered anything for breakfast.  The breakfast selections were slightly better than the lunch and dinner items:  there were things like cold cereal, hot oatmeal, breakfast sandwiches made on English muffins as well as standard eggs, bacon, sausage, etc.  We actually spent about an hour and a half there just enjoying watching the village wake up.  It was a Monday so we got to hear the school bell ring and see the kids walking to school.

After, we went to the post office to mail our post cards and Little Helen wanted to try to find fruit in the grocery store as she was having withdrawals.  While we did all this, Mr. Helen stood outside chatting with one of the reservation's Rangers who gave him some tips and hints for our upcoming hike to the falls.

Supai is known for it's unique waterfalls, five in all.  The waterfalls are actually one of the reasons so many people brave the hike into the canyon. They all have gorgeous clear blue water that is caused by travertine deposits.  The water has the same clear blue color as the water you see in the Caribbean, but with the background of the red canyon walls.  It's breathtakingly beautiful.

The first set of falls, Upper and Lower Navajo falls are about a mile hike from the village center.  We grabbed cameras and backpacks and wore swimsuits under our hiking clothes and took off.  We were again, hiking in that red sand which is so much harder than you'd think. But we didn't have a time agenda and again, it was a beautiful hike.  It wasn't long before we could hear the falls and then, we could see them.  I don't think the photos do them justice, but here you go!

Little Navajo Falls

There were several places where you could walk down to the bottom of the falls and even some natural swimming holes but we chose to just walk around and take pictures.  Around a mile beyond Little Navajo, is Havasu Falls, which are the most photographed falls in the Grand Canyon.  There is one big huge waterfall with a bunch of swimming pools beyond it.  The water stays at about 70 degrees year round so you can imagine how nice it would be to cool off there on a super hot canyon day.  Well, the day we were hiking it was unusually cool and overcast.  But when we got to these falls I knew I would regret it if I didn't get in that water - this was my trip of a lifetime after all!

That's me on the left.  Please excuse the whiteness and humongousness of me, but I wanted to give you an idea of how big and powerful the falls were and to show that I did indeed take my swim!

Also me in one of the smaller pools.  As you can see there were professional photographers there too, as evidenced by the tripod on the left.

The tribe has done a great job of placing picnic tables around the area so it's a lovely spot to stop and have lunch or just rest and swim for a while.  We loved these falls so much we stopped again on our way back to the village and relaxed a while longer.  Very hard to put into words just how wonderful and peaceful it was.

Next up was Mooney Falls, about another mile walk.  Funny story about Mooney Falls... which is a blog all in itself so stay tuned!


  1. Talk about an oasis - the waterfalls and pools look so beautiful! Good on ya for swimming in them...I think you'd regret it if you hadn't.

    1. You are so right my friend - I know I would have always looked back with regret had I not just put my chubby behind in the water :D

  2. The colors are beautiful! I'm sitting here thinking about who I could talk into going there with me.

  3. Was the water warm? There is just something about a good cup of coffee that makes a breakfast.

    Hope you have a great weekend!

    1. Biz, that water stays around 70 degrees year round and I don't call that warm. For example, the water in the Caribbean, which is generally the only place I'll swim is around 80. I'm sure when it's 100 degrees down in that canyon, people love being in that water! I did decide that maybe it's a clearness issue for me more than temperature. If the water is clear and beautifully blue, maybe I don't care what the temperature is!

  4. Beautiful! Great that you took a swim, you couldn't let that opportunity pass.

  5. Am loving the travelog and photos! I love water like that too and would have been right there with you in it!