Beaver Falls for the normal person is a full round trip day hike from the Camping Area.
Please note any reference to river left or river right is when you are facing downstream.
Take a day pack, swim suit, towel, lunch and water (Plenty of Drinking water). I carry a gallon of drinking water on this trip.
Wear boots and bring water shoes. Much of your trip will be walking in knee deep water. Either walking the stream, or crossing it many times. Parts of the trail are less traveled, but fairly easy to follow…though some say they lose the trail and give up. Worse case….float in the water…..it will get you there.
Enjoy Beaver, have lunch. Make sure you leave on this trip early in the morning, and start back giving yourself ample time. You don’t want to get back and attempt scaling Mooney Falls, chains, ladders, and that cliff trail after dark.
The first section below Mooney is mostly on river left.
The path (river left) will eventually wander through a wider area of the canyon full of vines growing a chest level. I had visions of being in the jungles of Thailand, not on a path in otherwise desert terrain. Keep an eye out for Big Horn Sheep in this area. If you are alone or just a couple of quiet people, you will often see the Big Horns on the trail, just keeping ahead of you. Other times they can be off at the edge of the vines, where the tree line is.
This vine area will give way to the trail ascending a rocky area. It will wind around the face of the rocks and you will glimpse the stream below through the trees.
The trail will eventually drop back to the water at a large rock jutting out to the stream edge. The path can’t proceed here on river left.
The trail drops into the water. From here you walk across and pick up the trail on the other side. You pretty much have to find your way here. But you will soon be at the Palm Tree landmark on river right.
Palm Tree landmark
Regardless of how you travel from Mooney to Beaver you will eventually encounter a large Pineapple looking Palm Tree. This tree will be on river right, growing at stream level, and up against a vertical wall of the canyon.
You have a choice of two different routes from here. The water route, or the upper ridge trail.
Left at the Palm Tree for water route. Wade across the stream to the river left side of the canyon. You can be in chest deep water at times on this route. It depends on water levels and of course how tall you are. Many like this route.
You will soon come to the top of the first terraced pool, and have to descend them on a ledge trail, ladders (still river left facing downstream) eventually ending at a place you have to assist yourself using a short rope, and back into the water. If you take this route be sure to have electronics and camera’s in waterproof bags. Small children not recommended.
Some with fear of heights might not like the rope part. But this is nothing compared to your descent of Mooney. Piece of cake!
Right at Palm Tree for ladder and upper ridge trail.
This is the route I prefer since I am normally carrying camera’s and multiple lens.
Just beyond the Palm tree in the rock wall you will have to use a short nearly vertical ladder. This is river right. Once up this ladder you have some rock scrambling and rock steps to get up on the ridge maybe 50 ft above the stream.
You will then use a well defined path that follows above the stream on river right facing downstream. There are places to view the stream below. As you head down stream and the water is dropping over terrace after terrace, the drop between the trail and the water increases. Some of the views are spectacular. I would take this route at least coming or going and get some photos.
You eventually get to a place in the trail that requires some rock scrambling to descend. There is normally a ranger in this area. You come out on a rock face to a wood ladder. The wood ladder is about a 16 footer. Not bad unless you have a fear of heights. It doesn’t extend up above the rock edge to give you anything to hang on to. You have to butt slide and hold on to what rocks you can grip. If you have an issue with this, get someone to go in front of you to guide your feet and slide down feet first on your belly if need be. It is intimidating to some. When leaving and going up, most people will not even notice.
Once you make it down this ladder you are back at stream level. If you took the water route have have gotten to this same general area.
You are below numerous terraced pools. It is just beautiful. I think it is one of the best spots of the whole trip.
There is plenty of wading and swimming for all skill levels. Hope you brought your lunch, a towel, and drinking water!
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