Snow Photos from February 2019 are drifting in

Those hardy souls that made the trek around February 19 through 22, 2019 braved some serious weather. Two lane roads, as well as Interstate highways, shut down due to record breaking snow fall. Not one person recommended taking skis…..LOL!

If you have your own photo(s) to share, please follow over to the article for more info. We would love to add them to those we are receiving. Some will make it on the website!

Click this link to see the article on Winter Conditions

Hilltop Parking Trail Head – February 2019 Image Courtesy of: WISPP

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ZION NATIONAL PARK closes the NARROWS access 9/25/2018 Re Opened 9/28/2018

[9/28/2018] The below info has a status change.  As of Friday September 28, 2018 the Narrows, Top Down permits are again being issued.  An agreement was reached with a landowner, to resolve the conflict.

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[9/25/2018]  Reports started flowing in 9/25/2018 that Zion National Park has suspended issuing permits to the “Narrows” area, including the popular “Top-Down” trips.

Zion Narrows

This is due to a dispute over Private Property rights.

Day hiking from the Temple of Sinawava to Big Spring is open.  Upstream travel beyond Big Spring is prohibited.

We haven’t heard what has triggered this.  It is a reminder to respect the land, and the locals at all times, no matter where you travel.  You never know what might make someone decide to no longer share.

Here is a Link to the official Zion NP website.
https://www.nps.gov/zion/planyourvisit/thenarrows.htm

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HIDDEN FALLS

One of our contributors has provided a great write-up on Hidden Falls.   Again we wish to thank Jessica Rose for her time.  But alas we have been informed this area is Off Limits to visitors/tourists.

Those recommending a visit to this area are misinformed.  We where given  information that this particular Falls, and general side trail area is not marked on purpose .   Visitors and tourists are not suppose to be in this area.

Brain Volk writes:

There is a reason that there aren’t signs marking this falls, and above it, on the trail, there are signs saying not to go there. The cliff and ground around it is unstable.

The Ramada (wooden structure) is rebuilt and used for ceremonies. Its not an area where tourists are supposed to go. We are not welcome to go off the main trail here.

Follow Link to Hidden Falls for Details and Photo!

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First Trip Report after devastating July 2018 Flash Flood

Note From Editor/Admin.  The following trip report is a contribution from one of our readers and associated Facebook group membership.

As you may, or may not be aware of, the Havasu Falls/Supai, Arizona area was devastated by a Flash Flood on July 13, 2018.  In some estimates there was in excess of $250,000.00 worth of damage to the village, the campgrounds and the trail.

The area was closed off to tourists, campers, and visitors while safety concerns were eliminated, and repairs were made.

Click this Link to follow over to the Full Trip Report with photos

The long anticipated reopening of the area was on September 1, 2018.   We expected physical alterations to the natural beauty of the area.  It has occurred in the past.  This is an ever changing environment.  We have been hoping someone would let us know what to expect.

Lower Navajo Falls – September 2018

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Supai – Havasu Falls area reopens 9/1 /2018

We just received wonderful news.  An Official Havasupai PR Media release.  It reads as follows:

The Havasupai Tribal Council confirms that the trail and campgrounds will re-open as planned on September 1, 2018. The necessary repairs to the trail and campgrounds have been completed and the areas are safe for visitors.

Visitors are advised to be prepared for the monsoon season, which typically runs through September 30, 2018.

All visitors need to be alert at all times throughout their visit and to carry plenty of water as temperatures in the summer soar to well over 100 degrees Fahrenheit (38 degrees Celsius).  All visitors must comply with posted signs and instructions from Tribal officials.

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Touring Grand Canyon Caverns

Wow touring the Cavern [Near Peach Springs, Arizona on Old RT 66] was a great side trip.  I am sorry we never did it sooner!

If you are intending to camp, or even considering camping, at the Grand Canyon Caverns Campgrounds, or simply passing by on old RT 66.  Be sure to allow time for the Cavern Tour!

Did you know you can have your meal down in the Cavern?  The combo meal & tour is very reasonably priced.  When we looked at the menu and the tour, as individual prices.  Having the experience in the cave, was a no brain’er!

Follow the link over to the full article.  In the article there are links to other points of interest.  Also our experience camping in the campground.  Grand Canyon Caverns Article.

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HACKBERRY GENERAL STORE ON OLD ROUTE 66 – Willem Bor

Today I stumbled into information related to the Hackberry General Store along Old Route 66, and an artist named Willem Bor. The route is often referred to as the “Mother Road”.   The artist, fascinated by the route and old structures, set off to recreate them in model form.

If you are making a road trip from the west to Backpack Havasu Falls you will mostly likely pass right by the Hackberry General Store.   Be sure to factor in some time to make a stop.

The artist info linked further in this article becomes so much more if you stop, get out, and explore the Hackberry General Store area.


Have you ever gotten to a page on the internet you have no idea how it happened? Suddenly into some obscure website that piques your interest? Subject related to something you would have never thought to go searching for it? Ah, the pleasures of modern technology. It allows you to travel the world in micro-seconds.

I have driven old sections of Route 66 over the years. I know I have been on numerous parts of it across the U.S.  Chopped up pieces.  Parts now off the beaten path of the much faster Interstate Highways.  Though at this stage most of my recollection is isolated to some Arizona sections.  Many small towns are locked in time.  Seeming to stand unchanged since the time the Interstates bypassed once vibrant travel stops.

On the the subject I really wish to share. I stumbled into a blog of an artist (Willem Bor).  His blog was created to show his craft of model making. Oddly he did not live in USA. But fell in love with the buildings along Old Route 66 during a visit. Many which are disappearing with time and decay.  Willem Bor set off to recreate them in miniature form.  In detail you may find hard to believe.

One building in particular is currently still standing and called “Hackberry’s General Store”. I have actually been there on numerous occasions, and have done my own photography.

Check out his blog link below. You can find the Hackberry General Store built in model size.  Compare it to our photos on this page.  Visit it in person should you have the opportunity.  Then you judge how cool these model buildings are. I also love the history that is provided with each piece.

Sadly, in researching and going to his Facebook page I believe he is no longer with us since January 2017? His work and website lives on, at least for now. We can only hope he is traveling along Route 66 and comparing his work.

Link to:  Route 66 Model Art – by Willem Bor

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GRAND CANYON CAVERN CAMPGROUNDS

For those of you venturing to Havasu Falls.  Grand Canyon Cavern Campgrounds offers an excellent alternative to sleeping in your car at the Hilltop Trail Head parking lot.

Late night Milky Way Photo Op at Grand Canyon Cavern Campground

I have done the Havasu Falls trip on numerous occasions. More than once some years.  Once I trail camped up off the trail below the switchbacks (I don’t believe it is allowed any longer?)

On another occasion I attempted sleeping in my vehicle.  That was a negative experience and I vowed not again.

Since then, until a 2017 trip, I have always left Las Vegas and made the drive timed to arrive at the Trail Head right when I want to start hiking.  At times that meant leaving Vegas at 2am.

Traveling in the dark means missing much of the scenery along the way, or fun stops such as Hackberry, Arizona.  Perhaps missing Seligman, Arizona if you are coming in from the east.  Both are interesting and great photo op stops.

The last 60 miles off old route 66, once you start heading north on Indian Rd 18, is a desolate and hazardous stretch of highway at night.  It is not the road to be driving in the dark due to wildlife and open range cattle crossing or standing in the road.

Our Havasu trip planned for mid May 2017 found us debating the early morning departure from Las Vegas.  After recommending the Grand Canyon Cavern Campgrounds on the website so many years we decided to give it a try.

The entrance is a few miles east of the RT 66 & IR 18 intersection.  The view from the road side appears as an old run down gas station, and a small cafe.  Some old vehicles staged around the parking lot up by the buildings.  We stopped in the cafe and the friendly staff pointed us to the road/drive, that snaked around the back of the cafe, and up over a small hill.  We almost got nailed by the cops tucked in behind a tree (Vintage black & white cop car staged along the road) LOL!

The campground is about a mile on this paved road that winds through low growing evergreen trees.  You eventually come to the restaurant first.  This is some distance off the main road RT 66 and not visible from the main road.

Don’t expect RV resort accommodations.  Though they do have power pedestals on many sites.  The campground is typical high desert and appears not well kept.  Sites are dirt.  Some have picnic tables, some do not.  No sites have any type of shade structure.

The Evergreen tree’s peppered about average about 15ft tall.  This is high desert.  So I suspect these are Cedars or Pinon Pine.  They offer relatively little shade except in the late afternoon.  They do provide a little privacy from some neighboring sites.

There are rough graded roads and ample sites tucked into out of the way places if you want to enjoy some privacy.   We saw no site numbers.  Once you pay you simply have squatters rights to any open place you want to make your camp.  Bathrooms/Showers…..not the best.  But they are centrally located at the front of the camping area, and not too far from the restaurant building.

We made reservations at the last minute, the night before.  Mid May there were plenty of sites.  The grounds are large enough I would think you would not have trouble at any time?  You might not get a level site, or one with power, but I think they would be able to accommodate you?

The prices of $32 a night for 2 with a tent.  I don’t remember if that included power or not.  We did find a picnic table that had a power pedestal next to it.  In hindsight a small electric heater and an extension cord would have been nice.  It got real cold that night.

We had a picnic table and lots of 15ft Pinyon Pine or Ceders that offered wind breaks and some privacy.  The campground location makes it near ideal for starting the trip the next day.

We didn’t have time to check out the Cavern tours.  The Caverns are the actual reason this place exists!  That might be another story for another day.

We arrived around 6pm and took advantage of the restaurant that looks like it is open until 8pm.  We can both recommend the Pulled Pork/BBQ sandwich.   We washed those down with several ice cold brews and had a very relaxing visit.  It sure beat driving over in the middle of the night tempting fate driving in the dark.  It certainly beats sleeping in the vehicle at the trail head.   It beats waking up after attempting to sleep at the trail head, being tired and cranky, at the start of the hike down.

We tried to set up minimal gear to head out right at first light.  It was a very cold night for sure.  I believe more so because of the higher altitude.  We survived the cold, and packed gear about 4am to take off.  Several others must have had the same idea because two other groups took off right before us.

The drive up IR 18, the last 60 miles to the trail head, was a pleasant one.  The sun just below the horizon.  Enough light to avoid slamming into black cattle standing on the road,  or wandering Elk.  Both of which could quickly turn a fun trip into a disaster.

At the trail head, in the morning light, we made a breakfast.  A batch of bacon, eggs, and coffee on the camp stove stove out the back of our vehicle.  With some hearty protein in our systems we started hiking near sunrise.

So our recommendation is to allot the time to make this your stop.  Enjoy the restaurant the night before.  Even come early enough to check out the Caverns.  Then give yourself 1 hour of driving time, plus packing up your camp, to be at the trail head right at sunrise.   You will easily be down the switchbacks all in the shade.  All at a much more relaxed frame of mind.

Those leaving after a trip, and after hiking back out, this is also an excellent place to camp over.  Avoid a long drive after hiking out.  If this is your first trip you will not believe how cramped up your legs will get if you hike out, and make a long drive.  Been there, done that too!  Getting smarter and enjoying the whole experience way more.

Summer time may be different, due to heat.  Camping could become unpleasant?  Be sure to check this all out in advance.

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SELIGMAN ARIZONA on Old RT 66

Seligman Arizona was once the part of the homeland of the Native American Havasupai people.  The Havasupai at one time had a settlement in this very area.

In more current times Seligman is on the original Route 66.  In recent years Interstate 40 bypassed the town a few miles away.  Traffic for the most part no longer passes through town.

The town still vies for tourist dollars to exist.  Now a small town of about 500 people.  If you stop and take some time, photo ops abound in every direction.  Old vehicles, Elvis, Burger joints, Frozen Custard, Road Kill Cafe, Gas stations, and a KOA Campground on the east end of town.

If you are traveling via old route 66 from the east, on your way to Havasu Falls or Peach Springs, you will pass through Seligman.   You can also continue traveling west through Peach Springs and eventually hit  Kingman Arizona.  All on a section of old RT 66.

West of Peach Springs you will pass by the Hackberry General Store.  Talk about another photo op.  Be sure to stop!

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HACKBERRY’S GENERAL STORE – Old RT 66 – Road Trip stop

Hackberry’s General Store is a “must do” road trip stop. If you are traveling on Old Route 66 between Kingman, Arizona, and Peach Springs, Arizona.  This is a great spot to stop.  No gas available that I know of, but a fun place. Photo ops in every direction.

Hackberry’s General Store is a trip destination in itself. If you have the time, travel old Route 66 heading northeast out of Kingman, Arizona driving toward Peach Springs. Time it so you are in the area during the day. Hackberry is roughly midpoint between Kingman and Peach Springs.

This building has featured photos appearing in numerous advertisements. It’s iconic image is known worldwide. It is a favorite stop for many enjoying a trip on old Route 66.

Also a popular stop on any trip people are making to Havasu Falls for backpacking trips.  Especially if traveling in from the west.  Just allow yourself some extra time for this stop. You might think a few minutes is all that is necessary.  No so.

If you enjoying shooting photos your better factor in at least an hour. Tons of old cars and car parts are scattered across the property. Old gas pumps, old metal signs, and broken down machinery.

Stop in and browse the interior too. The place has an old time staged soda fountain. The bathroom decor is a hoot. There are dollar bills plastered on the ceiling and walls by travelers from all over the world.

Bring your camera because the building and all of the “old iron” scattered around is a photographers dream.
Address:
11255 E Hwy 66
Hackberry, AZ 86401

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