Vegas to Havasu Falls/Grand Canyon Questions?

I'll be in Vegas mid-November and plan on driving out to the Grand Canyon. I want to make a few quick stops along the way (Hoover Dam, Route 66, Grand Canyon Caverns, etc)

If I leave Vegas before dawn, would I be able to do all of this in one day?

Would I be able to get some quick hiking in? I'm dying to check out Havasu Falls or even one of the South Rim trails but I heard those are an all-day adventure.

Going back to Havasu Falls...after the terrible flooding last year, what is the condition of the falls now? I heard one of the falls disappeared but newer ones formed. Is the water back to its beautiful blue-green color?

What's the weather like around these parts in mid-November?

Thanks..and please feel free to recommend anything interesting I should check out along the way.

7 Answers

  • 1 decade ago
    Favorite Answer

    Hiking to Havasu Falls and back in one day is not really feasible even aside from the drive times. It is an 8 mile hike just from the trailhead to Supai Village and another couple of miles from there to the falls. So you would be looking at a 20 mile round trip canyon hike on top of a 5 hour drive from Vegas to the trailhead (5 hours each way).

    The canyon was badly damaged by flooding over a year ago. I have not been there since then, but I understand that the trails are open. The falls should still be there and the water should have returned to normal, but I am not sure on the condition of the little travertine pools at the bottom. Regardless, Havasu Falls is best done as an overnight trip (preferably two nights to have a day to explore the area).

    Going to the South Rim of the canyon and back, and even getting in a short day hike, is feasible, but it would be a very long day. It is about a 5 hour drive from Vegas to the South Rim of the canyon. The quickest (and most instantly rewarding) of the South Rim trails is probably going 1.4 miles down the South Kaibab trail (near Yaki Point) to Cedar Ridge. This will give you sweeping views of the canyon. The first 1.5 miles to the first rest spot on the Bright Angel trail (near the lodges) is nice too, although the views from the upper trail are not as magestic. It is definitely worth trying to go at least a little ways into the canyon as the experience of being below the rim - even a little - is much different than just standing on the rim.

    When you are at the canyon, be sure to check out some of the famous historic buildings and lodges including the grand 1905 El Tovar (considered one of the classic National Park lodges), the nearby 1905 Hopi House curio shop (built to look like an indian pueblo) and the historic Kolb Photo Studio (which often has free art exhibits). The free shuttle bus from the lodges out to Hermit Rest and back (with stops along the way) is well worth doing, but takes a couple hours minimum to go the whole way.

    You are really not going to have much time for extra sightseeing along the way from Vegas to the canyon, but if you did, here are some recommendations:

    Rather than I-40, take the old Route 66 detour from Kingman to Seligman. This is the longest continous suviving stretch of old Route 66 and a pretty drive. In Seligman, check out the famous Snow Cap soda show - a Route 66 landmark. Grand Canyon Caverns is along the way - not the world's most interesting cavern, but sort of fun if you have the time.

    South of Hoover Dam, you could detour off to the east to visit the old mining town of Chloride, Arizona which has some cool old buildings and a number of artists and other quirkly citizens.

    Flagstaff (south of the canyon) is an interesting town with a historic downtown area filled with nice shops and galleries and several great museums (Lowell Observatory, Museum of Northern Arizona) as well as several smaller National Monuments nearby (Walnut Canyon, Sunset Crater, Wupatki Ruins). Williams (to the west) is a smaller vesion of Flagstaff and the starting point for the Grand Canyon railway.

    Don't be lured off to 'Grand Canyon West' which is the home of the much-hyped glass 'Skywalk' - this is a money-making tourist attraction (not associated with the National Park) that is very expensive and located in a less deep and less interesting stretch of the canyon just above Lake Mead.

    As far as weather goes... people often assume that all of Arizona is hot desert, but the Grand Canyon is up on the Colorado Plateau at an elevation of around 7,000 feet (half a mile higher than Denver). Temps will depend on the weather at the time, but it will likely be cool during the day and dropping to around freezing at night on the South Rim with some chance even of snow storms.

    I would strongly recommend trying to spend at least one night at the canyon (or in Flagstaff or Williams). Trying to go there and back in one day will leave you no time for stops along the way or enjoying the places you do go.

    Source(s): Arizona resident and frequent Grand Canyon visitor. Grew up in Flagstaff (near the canyon) and have been to all the places you mentioned and travelled all the roads you would travel many times. Grand Canyon National Park website: Havasupai Tribe (Havasu Falls) Website:
  • Anonymous
    4 years ago

    Havasu Falls Directions

  • ?
    Lv 7
    1 decade ago

    You would be so exhausted by the end of the day that it would be no fun. Take a week to do all of this, not a day. For a day trip, see Hoover Dam, have lunch, see Lake Mead, and go back to Vegas. Try Grand Canyon another time, but remember, this is October, think cold. Next month the North Rim will probably be closed for the winter.

  • TopGun
    Lv 6
    1 decade ago

    You can make a quick one day trip to grand canyon( 8 hour driving,only 1 hour in canyon), but not hiking even a little bit

    mid nov is not acessible to tribe

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  • Anonymous
    5 years ago

    Grand Canyon has two rims, one in UT and one in AZ. The UT one is not open in winter. The AZ one is a day drive. I would recommend you look at a tour bus instead of renting a car, with arrangements to see the Canyon and The Skywalk.

  • hope
    Lv 4
    4 years ago

    Additional details required

  • 5 years ago

    Never thought too much about that

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