Monday, July 29, 2013

On Earth as it is in Heaven

Last week, 9 friends and I went backpacking to Havasu Falls, which I'm convinced is one of the most beautiful places on earth. 

About 3 hours from Grand Canyon, the Falls are located on the Havasupai Reservation, a few miles from one of the most remote cities in the United States. Only accessible by an 8-mile hike or mule ride from the top of a canyon, this wilderness maintains its pristine beauty despite the tourists who do flock to the bottom.
 We camped beneath cliff walls that rose over a thousand feet above us. The walls were riddled with caves, remnants of failed mining expeditions.
 Havasu Falls is known for its blue-green water. It doesn't show up clearly in these pictures, but even after the rains of the last few months, we still swam in turquoise pools
 The river at the bottom of the canyon flows over rocks and terraces, creating miles of little waterfalls and rapids.
After camping overnight by Havasu Falls, we hiked farther along the trail. The path took us through carved rock, and down cliff faces aided by posts and chains.
Mooney Falls was spectacular, and swimming in the pool at the bottom felt like being in the middle of a hurricane.
 The path to Beaver Falls, 4 miles from our campsite, was bizarrely tropical. It felt like we were wandering through rainforest rather than the desert that Arizona is known for.
 Beaver Falls was worth the hike. We scrambled over waterfalls and swam in the blue-green pools. We climbed up rock faces and sat in caves behind sheets of water. The experience was surreal and incredible-- a tiny taste of Paradise on Earth.

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