The Navajo Falls is the first waterfall along the Havasu Creek, below the Supai Village in the Havasu Canyon in Arizona. It’s one of a number of waterfalls along the spectacular Havasu Falls Trail.
Although it’s one of the smaller waterfalls, it is stunning: the water is a distinctive turquoise colour due to leaching of minerals (calcium carbonate), and the backdrop is the towering cliffs of the canyon.
The waterfall is named after an old Supai chief, and is a relatively “new” waterfall. The original Navajo Falls was obliterated by a massive flash flood that swept through Havasu Canyon in 2008, altering the watercourse of Havasu Creek. In its place are smaller cascades – you can see below the two separate waterfalls. (The lower cascades are sometimes called the Little Navajo Falls or Lower Navajo).
The rocks around the waterfall are also interesting, having been (in only a relatively short space of time) weathered and sculpted by the water into unusual shapes.
Getting to Navajo Falls
The waterfall is the first one you reach on the trail from Supai Village as you descend Havasu Creek towards the Colorado River. It’s about a 12.3km hike from Hualapai Hilltop to Supai, and then about 1.5km further to reach Navajo Falls, which is just off the main track. Hualapai Hilltop is a 4.5 hour drive (420km / 260 miles) from Phoenix in Arizona or 4 hours (365km / 225 miles) from Las Vegas in Nevada, which are the closest major airports.
The official “hiking season” is February to November, and during summer (June to August) the trail is subject to close due to flooding and extreme heat. A pre-purchased permit is essential.