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Navajo Falls (Lower Navajo Falls)

Lower Navajo Falls
Lower Navajo Falls in 2010. / Trail Sherpa, Flickr / CC BY-ND 2.0

WorldBlue  In short

After the flooding in 2008 on the site of a former waterfall formed two smaller waterfalls, including the beautiful Lower Navajo Falls (Rock Falls): a 9 m tall waterfall with a single plunge.

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GPS coordinates
36.2495 N 112.6969 W
Location, address
North America, United States, Arizona, Coconino County, Havasu Canyon, before Havasu Falls
Navajo Falls, Rock Falls, Emerald Falls
9 m
Less then 2 m3/s
Havasu Creek

Map of the site

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WorldYellow In detail

Lower Navajo Falls in 2011. Upper Navajo Falls are in the background.
Lower Navajo Falls in 2011. Upper Navajo Falls are in the background./ Alan English CPA, Flickr / CC BY-NC 2.0

More detailed description of the geological history of waterfalls in Havasu Canyon is provided in the article about Havasu Falls.

Between Supai village and the Colorado River in Havasu Canyon are five-six larger waterfalls and countless smaller travertine terraces. The main waterfalls (starting from Supai) are:

The historical, old Navajo Falls in 1938
The historical, old Navajo Falls in 1938./ Grand Canyon National Park, Wikimedia Commons / CC BY 2.0

Lower Navajo Falls (as well as Upper Navajo Falls) formed after the massive floods on August 16-17, 2008. For several hours the amount of water in Havasu Creek increased almost 100 times (1) and the extreme power of the water washed out the earlier travertine formations of the previous Navajo Fall.

The earlier Navajo Falls was some 18 m high. The previous waterfall was not a permanent feature either: before the floods in August 1955, this waterfall was 23 m high.

As the water level fell, the stream formed new waterfalls in new locations.

Surprisingly fast the stream formed new travertine terraces above and below the falls and, even if the landscape has changed, the waterfalls of emerald-colored Havasu Creek are as beautiful as ever.

Behind the curtain of falling water is a small cave.

People may like to jump in the deep pool below the falls but this is a disrespectful action to the local people and, also quite dangerous due to the constantly changing locations of sharp stones.

References

  1. 2008 flood alters landscape of famed Grand Canyon site, ABC News, August 17, 2009. Accessed on January 4, 2023.
  2. Theodore S. Melis, William M. Phillips, Robert H. Webb, and Donald J. Bills. When the Blue-Green Waters Turn Red. Historical Flooding in Havasu Creek, Arizona, U.S. GEOLOGICAL SURVEY Water-Resources Investigations Report 96—4059. 1996. Accessed on January 4, 2023.

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WorldYellow Recommended books

Arizona State Parks: A Guide to Amazing Places in the Grand Canyon State


Home to one of the Seven Natural Wonders of the World, Arizona is a beacon for outdoor enthusiasts–the desert landscape is brimming with opportunities for exploration and adventure. In this guide we join travel writer Roger Naylor as he takes us through the state parks of this amazing region. The parks featured throughout this book offer some of the best hiking, camping, fishing, boating, stargazing, and wildlife watching in the state.

Exploring Havasupai: A Guide to the Heart of the Grand Canyon


Deep in the Grand Canyon lies a place of unmatched beauty―a place where blue-green water cascades over fern-clad cliffs into travertine pools, where great blue heron skim canyon streams, and where giant cottonwoods and graceful willows thrive in the shade of majestic sandstone cliffs. Havasupai is a paradise enveloped in one of the earth’s most rugged and parched landscapes.


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