Havasu Springs

Nearly all Havasupai hikers go only downstream from the village. However, another short day hike is available by going upstream to Havasu Springs. These springs, the source of water for Havasu Creek, come from underground flows that reach the surface in Havasu Canyon shortly upstream of its juncture with Hualapai Canyon. To get there, retreat on the same trail you used coming into the village. Shortly after crossing the bridge the wanted trail forks off to the left, folllowing Havasu Creek. After a half mile or so the creek becomes noticibly smaller, and eventurally becomes very shallow and boggy. There is no gushing or bubbling or anything like that, at least as far as we could see. Rather, the creek just gradually appears and gets bigger as it proceeds.

Before you reach the beginnings of the creek you will encounter a red "Wrong Way" sign, although the trail continues and it does not say "Keep Out". At some point this trail becomes Topocoba Trail which is an alternative route down from the rim. Permits from both the Huvasupai Tribe and the National Parks Service are required to use this trail, however.

When we did this hike we were unsure of which side of the Havasu Creek to hike up. At Ed's suggestion, based on our topo map, we left the main trail immediately before the bridge. As shown in the photos, there was no proper trail so we were fighting our way through brush most of the time. Eventually, we got to where the flow was shallow enough to cross, and as soon as we did we were on the proper trail as described above. Always the gentleman, JR rerfained from saying "I told you so!"
SAM 0829  Headed for Havasu Springs. On our chosen route, on the right side of the creek, threre was some evidence of a trail and occasional footprints. SAM 0828  We stumbled across this while working our way upstream.  Since it's doubtful any hiker would risk building a fire here, perhaps young people from the village come out here to party. SAM 0830  The creek is flowing fast here but not as wide. By this point we had come to realize the real trail was on the other side, but the water was too deep and fast to cross safely. SAM 0831  A bit further upstream Havasu Creek is but a shadow of its downstream self.
SAM 0832  After wading across, we're on the real trail! SAM 0833  We were supposed to meet up with Jon & Kathy for a swim at Navaho so we headed back downstream. SAM 0834  Gear adjustment break SAM 0835  Since we got to this point by hiking  upstream on the other side of the creek, we didn't see this sign until we had already violated it's message!  Actually, this would be the right way if you were intending to hike up the Topocopa Trail to the rim.