Superstition Reavis Falls Hike Map

By Thomas Gail Haws


Reavis Falls, a 140 foot cascading waterfall located 4 miles downstream of Reavis Ranch on Reavis Creek in the northeastportion of Arizona's Superstition mountains, has been the subject of a few published articles over the years, but has never had an official trail blazed. After visiting Reavis Falls a few times at various times of year and day (and night), and having occasional difficulty finding "the" trail, I took a trip to the falls around 1997 with the express purpose of mapping the route accurately. The purpose of this page is to get you to the falls with minimal trouble. Enjoy.

Reavis Falls Hike Map

The drive to the trailhead is usually mild enough for just about any vehicle, though an occasional washout will discourage low-clearance vehicles. This hike is generally rated as moderate. The round trip is equivalent to climbing up and down a 2945' mountain walking 13+ miles in the process. As a day hike it is strenuous. It is most enjoyable as an overnight hike, with an early afternoon start and camping at Reavis creek.

Route Description

From Tortilla Flat (east of Canyon Lake on AZ State Route 88), travel east about 11 miles to Reavis Trailhead turnoff (1 mile past highway maintenance yard and 2 miles before Apache Lake Marina turnoff). Turn right and follow Reavis Trailhead road to trailhead. Park vehicle here.

From the trailhead, hike following Reavis Ranch trail/road about 2.25 miles then up a particularly steep and gravelly hill headed south.

At the top of the steep hill, follow the trail/road 1.25 mile east along the north side of Lewis and Pranty Creek canyon to its easternmost point, doubling back southwesterly briefly at about 3/4 mile.

Once you are at the easternmost point of Lewis and Pranty Creek canyon,and the trail turns south (S-SW) for at least 1000 feet ahead up a steady incline, keep a sharp lookout for a faint trail headed up the hillside to the left. The coordinates of the Falls Trail start are:N33° 32'45.9" W111° 11'27.1". (One way to pinpoint the beginning of the Falls' Trail on the map is to locate a map point one mile due north of Castle Dome. The Falls' Trail begins east and slightly north of this point.)

Take the trail, or if necessary go cross country to a gate in a fence near the top of the saddle east of the basin. The coordinates of the trail at the top of the saddle are:N33° 32'40.5" W111° 11'15.5"

The trail from the saddle to the falls is much clearer now than in years past. The trail turns south for about 1500 ft. and then doubles back. Beware of prickly pear cactus starting in this area. The trail passes near a spreading juniper as it heads south again. Stone ruins of old walls are located east of the tree. Coordinates of the ruins are: N33° 32'29.3" W111° 11'03.9". The trail itself turns south just 50 feet short of the ruins to continue descent.

Follow the trail down the gully and through a small pass between the hill on your left and Lime Mountain on your right. Continue on the north side of Lime Mountain and then down into Cedar Basin where you will see a poured patch of concrete. Coordinates:N33° 32'16.7'" W111° 10'21.6"

At Cedar Basin, cross the creek and gradually ascend the east side of the canyon heading north until you can cross over the ridge into Reavis Creek. There are good camping sites on the east side of Reavis Creek just about where the trail reaches it. Hike up stream about 1/2 mile to the bottom of the Reavis Falls.Coordinates of falls: N33° 31'58.5" W111° 10'00.3"

Reviewed by Kato D. Haws, Jr. Thanks, Dad.

Trail Updates

Mar 9, 2001 from Jay Elston:

Thomas,

I just wanted to thank you for posting the information about Reavis Falls.

My son and I backpacked in and visited the falls last Friday(Mar 9, 2001). We managed to squeeze the trip in between rainstorms. We hiked in Thursday and camped near the "ruins".

Friday, we hiked to the falls, back to the ruins, and back to the trailhead. Whew! (I'm pushing 50, and so is my beer belly,and I was lucky to keep up a pace of ~1 mph over the last mile or two...)

The stream (Reavis Creek) was flowing pretty well. There was enough water that we got our feet wet at a couple of the crossings. The stream seemed to be about 15 to 20 feet wide at the top of the falls. There was a strong wind coming from the falls when you stood on the banks of the pool at the base of the falls. From the stains on the canyon walls, it looks like at maximum flow, the falls can be 100' wide or wider. Now that would be a sight to rival any other falls in the world! (On the other hand, how could you get there to see it?)

The wildflowers aloing the were fantastic. There were many very large stands of Mexican poppies. Lots of small purple flowers, bright yellow brittlebush. Wow!

We managed to lose the trail at Cedar basin, so we just followed the creek (Lime creek, I guess) until it met Reavis creek, then followed Reavis creek up to the falls.

On the way back, we found the right trail out of the canyon the falls are in. (Once we learned to trust the trail markers,the trail got a whole lot easier :-) My son and I couldn't figure out how we missed that trail on our way to the falls. It is well marked, and once we knew where it was, it stood out pretty well.

The trail to the falls from the main wagon road is pretty well marked and defined right now.

Again, thanks for posting this information.


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