Reaching Reavis Falls, once you find the canyon mouth, is three-fourths of a mile of boulder hopping and bushwacking over and around landslides, deep pools and fallen trees. Odds are you will be the only person in the canyon for weeks, if not months. Expect to be surprised. In this chapter you will (finally) visit the falls themselves.
A Camp in the Canyon
Click me for the chapter about the environment around the mouth of Reavis Canyon below the falls.
The Last Mile
Here is an overview of the last third mile of Reavis Canyon. You can see the wall of the falls nestled in the folds of ridges towards the top, just off center.
On the lower right is a large landslide and, below there, it is complete chaos.
The vegetation grows shoulder to shoulder with interleaved branches. You will not get through there. The solution is to find a way around, usually over and around house-sized boulders.
After almost two hours of picking my way, there was a flicker of light. The fall waters were sparkling in the sunlight high above the cottonwood trees, in full Mach bloom, and the still leafless Arizona Sycamores.
This was my view of Reavis Falls from the canyon on a March day before the Arizona Sycamores have leaved. The falls are the tiny patch of white to the left of midline where the earth meets the sky. Jumbles of infallen boulders and thick growth of sycamores, oaks and fully leaved cottonwoods cloak the falls.
Another 30 minutes of canyoneering brought me to the foot of the falls.
At the Foot of Reavis Falls
Looking up at Reavis Falls from a 20 foot tall mound of talus.
These are boulders washed down at flood time.
The rock wall is thick with microorganisms, fungi and mosses.
After clambering around the talus pile I found this angle….
An Arizona Sycamore, before the spring leafing, at the Foot of Reavis Falls
Talus at the Foot of Reavis Falls
The Reavis Falls talus is large boulders carried down Reavis Creek and washed over the falls at flood time as well as blocks fractured from the cliff face. You can see the base of the Sycamore from the previous photograph.
The falls are formed where Reavis Creek flows over a solid mass of rock. The talus is composed mostly of this red rock. From the edge of this cliff to the base, where the falls hit the canyon floor, is all of 140 feet. This is a far as you can proceed into the canyon without some serious climbing skills.
It is possible to climb around the canyon by climbing up the ridge from which I captured the Cedar Basin Hoodoos. See my posts below for this location (you need to work it our for yourself).
This is NOT the last post of the series. From here I will focus on the beauty of Reavis Falls and the canyon that holds them.
It was a four-day expedition so there are a few chapters covering the approach to the Falls:
Hoodoos on the Descent to Reavis Falls
Reavis Canyon Rivulets and Rocks
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