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  1. #1
    Member blackmagic's Avatar
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    Question Looking for advice on hanging, etc. in Havasupai (very end of July)

    I got extraordinarily lucky and got one of the coveted reservations.

    I live in the northeast, and haven't been to the Grand Canyon since I was a pre-teen, and I don't remember us camping out there, so I have no experience to draw from. I'm bringing three non-backpacker friends with me, and I'm hammocking myself in unfamiliar conditions, and I want to make sure we are all prepared. So I was hoping someone here has been there, roughly around the same time, and that I could draw from your experience!

    * The average highs in July/August are in the mid-90s, and average lows in the low-60s, with records of 107/48. Based on that, I think that a pair of 50-degree quilts would suffice, but I wanted to check if anyone had gotten by with less -- maybe just a fleece blanket and no underquilt at all?

    * From what I've read, flying insects in the canyon are not really an issue, and the primary concern for hanging is caterpillars falling on me from the cottonwood trees. Based on that, I was thinking that I could go netless, and bring a tarp to protect me from the falling crawlies.

    * July is also monsoon season, which the guides I've found just interpret as "unpredictable rainstorms." How long to those storms usually last? Coming from the northeast, I'm more familiar with rain that lasts for days, and not with the rainstorms that last for half an hour. Considering the heat, how much rain protection do I really need, other than a tarp?

    * How abundant are the hanging options within the campsite? What time did you get into camp, and how difficult was it to find a good hanging spot? If you can find trees somewhat outside of a designated campsite, could you hang there?

    * Finally, and this isn't really hammock-related: Since it is going to be so hot, I was thinking of bringing only dry, non-cook food, since hot food is not terribly appealing when it's 90 degrees outside. Is that feasible? Assuming cost is not an issue, how reasonable is it to rely on going into town for ALL of my food, either to the general store or the restaurant?

  2. #2
    Senior Member Tyroler Holzhacker's Avatar
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    Congrats on getting the Wonka Golden Ticket to Havasupai Falls. I envy you. AZ Steelman has been there twice. I am also an East Coaster, so have never been to Havasupai. It's on my bucket list for sure, although I won't be doing any cliff diving now at my age. From what I have read, you can hike in, helicopter in ($$$), or pack mule in (also $$). AZ Steelman could better tell you about provisions available at the the reservation. I'd bring your own food as you will be a day's hike away from your car, so going to a local restaurant or store isn't going to be an option.

  3. #3
    NOBOZax's Avatar
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    Awesome! Congrats for getting a permit. It is such a beautiful place. We backpacked in about 20 yrs ago and at the time it was very uncrowded, maybe saw 15 or 20 other people. We went in May and got a camp site next to stream that would definitely have some hang spots. From my memory I would say yes there are definitely hang spots but I would also say not every site is hang Worthy but I'm sure things are most assuredly much different now. I would bring all your own food otherwise I'm sure if they have much food to purchase on their reservation, that is towards the end of the hike a couple miles from the falls and camp, it's gonna cost a fortune. I hope someone who has been recently can give you some good info. Havasu is like my all time favorite backpacking trip. Enjoy!

    Pics are my wife and brother at top of trail then near the end and my wife at the second falls.

    Happy trails

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  4. #4
    Senior Member jeff-oh's Avatar
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    I was just at the NP. 4-27-19 to 5-4-19. Hammocks were not allowed where we were. Also there were no real opportunities to hang even if you could (in the NP). I took a tarp and a ground cloth and used my light weight sleeping bag. I am not sure what the regs are on the reservation. I do know that you should be prepared for a hard days hot hike. It is 7.5 miles and 2000 feet of elevation change to get from the car park to the village and roughly another 1000 feet of elevation to the falls. I trained for my trip for 3 months prior to going and minimized weight everywhere.

    I hope you have fun.

  5. #5
    New Member Element58's Avatar
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    Was there a little over a year and a half ago. My son and I both hung our hammocks, although when we went it not very busy (after Thanksgiving) and we had the pick of the sites. It will just depend on whats available,you may need to get creative.The reservation had no issues and we even talked to some of the rangers as the came through our campsite. Flying bugs were not an issues, dust and leaver were. We had tarps and only used them 1 night when a bit of rain came through. I think we did 40 or 30 degree underquilts, but our high never hit 60 once in the canyon.

    We left the trailhead just before daybreak to beat the mid-day sun.Took about 4 hours for us to get down to the sites (11:30 am when we stopped) this included stopping to register, and taking lots of pictures on the way etc. The hike in is relatively easy. As far as the monsoons they can be intense and just tend to pop up. However they are not usually all day rains (at least from my experience). I think they had a flood last July due to this.

    I would not rely on their store or restaurant for food. It's over a mile from the sites, all uphill. Again we were in 'off season', but when we visited on our way out, they were low stock and the cafe had several items on the menu no longer available. Everything comes in via horse or helicopter. We grabbed a soda and that was it. Interestingly on the way out we passed the mail 'train' USPS horse caravan with all kind's of Amazon boxes strapped to them. There is also a frybread hut in the camp but it was only open 1 day when we were there. We were disappointed because what we did get was good, and every time we walked by it was never opened again.

    Bring extra empty water containers the only source of water in camp is a small spring (no filter needed) it can be a walk, and this way you can fill up for a day.

    For the hike out I would also leave early, it gets hotter as you get out and the last 2 miles are hard.

    Have fun!

    The pictures from our trip

    http://jalbum.net/en/browse/user/album/1912607

  6. #6
    NOBOZax's Avatar
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    Wow... excellent pictures Element58! Lots of info in those for the OP. I'm surprised to see it hasn't really changed much in 20 yrs considering the couple major floods I've heard have happened in that time. Again, amazing photography

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  7. #7
    Member blackmagic's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Element58 View Post
    Was there a little over a year and a half ago. My son and I both hung our hammocks, although when we went it not very busy (after Thanksgiving) and we had the pick of the sites. It will just depend on whats available,you may need to get creative.The reservation had no issues and we even talked to some of the rangers as the came through our campsite. Flying bugs were not an issues, dust and leaver were. We had tarps and only used them 1 night when a bit of rain came through. I think we did 40 or 30 degree underquilts, but our high never hit 60 once in the canyon.

    We left the trailhead just before daybreak to beat the mid-day sun.Took about 4 hours for us to get down to the sites (11:30 am when we stopped) this included stopping to register, and taking lots of pictures on the way etc. The hike in is relatively easy. As far as the monsoons they can be intense and just tend to pop up. However they are not usually all day rains (at least from my experience). I think they had a flood last July due to this.

    I would not rely on their store or restaurant for food. It's over a mile from the sites, all uphill. Again we were in 'off season', but when we visited on our way out, they were low stock and the cafe had several items on the menu no longer available. Everything comes in via horse or helicopter. We grabbed a soda and that was it. Interestingly on the way out we passed the mail 'train' USPS horse caravan with all kind's of Amazon boxes strapped to them. There is also a frybread hut in the camp but it was only open 1 day when we were there. We were disappointed because what we did get was good, and every time we walked by it was never opened again.

    Bring extra empty water containers the only source of water in camp is a small spring (no filter needed) it can be a walk, and this way you can fill up for a day.

    For the hike out I would also leave early, it gets hotter as you get out and the last 2 miles are hard.

    Have fun!

    The pictures from our trip

    http://jalbum.net/en/browse/user/album/1912607
    Thanks so much -- you covered pretty much everything!

  8. #8
    New Member Element58's Avatar
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    Glad you liked them, thanks for the kind words.

  9. #9
    Senior Member michigandave's Avatar
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    I'm in Michigan and I've got 8 months to familiarize myself with Grand Canyon hiking. Reservations for Havasupai went on sale this past weekend and my daughter scored 2 of the coveted spots, so we'll be down there Sept 21-24! It's going to be a whole new experience for us.

    Even though I've been around the forums for a while, I'll ask this newb question, so forgive me: Am I ok with 40 degree quilts (and maybe UQP)? For tarps, I'm torn between my HG standard w/doors. Or just my regular 11 foot sil hex tarp. CF doesn't give much if any sun protection and I've baked under it before.

    Should be an awesome trip!
    Last edited by michigandave; 02-03-2020 at 09:54.

  10. #10
    NOBOZax's Avatar
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    A quick search of average temps there in sept shows lows in the 50's. So those quilts might be a little warm but you can vent the under quilt and throw back the top quilt so they would work. I would say doors would not be necessary but it looks like it could be crowded there so you might want the privacy of doors. Definitely try to be light as possible so you can pack plenty of water.

    My wife and I went 20 years ago in May of 2000 and it is still one of my favorite places I've ever been. At that time there were no crowds and we were like 2 of 30 people or so. We went down to Mooney Falls (scary but so much fun) and for about an hour we were the only ones down there.

    Drink plenty of water and enjoy the stunning beauty

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