The story of the recent flooding in Havasu Canyon continues to unfold.

Over 8 inches of rain fell in the area since Friday, turning the usually calm and turquoise Havasu Creek into a raging, muddy torrent. For a visual, here is video of Havasu Falls under normal conditions:


… and here it is with the water levels raised 2 feet — 6 feet lower than what’s flowing in the canyon right now:


Two things make this an especially nasty area for flash floods — one, the walls of this canyon are very steep, which means limited opportunities to get to higher ground; and two, the primary campground for the canyon is on fairly low land just a few hundred yards downstream from this waterfall.

The news from the area hasn’t been nearly as bad as it could have been, thanks to the efforts of the numerous groups helping with rescue operations. 400 people were successfully evacuated, and crews have started a search-and-rescue mission for the 11 hikers and campers still missing.

Arizona Central has more information on the events surrounding the flooding, as well as some harrowing first-person accounts of campers forced to climb trees and hope for the best.

I was in this canyon earlier this year, and it is impossible not to be awestruck by its natural beauty. I hope for the best for everyone still stuck in the canyon, as well as the Havasupai Tribe who live there.

Via Hiker Hell.

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