Regarding COVID-19: Please recreate responsibly and practice social distancing. Closures and travel restrictions are changing rapidly, always check and respect local regulations.

Havasupai must haves: Backpacking Havasupai and staying light

Hiking to this desert Oasis is not easy task! You want to be prepared, but really think about what you NEED. Hopefully this will help!

If you’re hiking in, you definitely want to go as light as possible. The 10 miles down isn’t the part that will get to you, it’s the 10 miles out where you really start to question everything you brought on the trip. I was able to get a permit over Spring Break in Mid-march, so the weather was in a constant fluctuation of warm, cold and raining.

The mornings were proving to be chilly, but the days looked warm if the weather lined up right. Luckily, the night we slept at the trailhead would be the coldest and once we were at the campgrounds it didn't dip below 40 degrees. The morning hike into the campground at 4:00 AM was in the 30’s, but it quickly warmed up to a cool 65 and on our hike out the next day hit 75 with direct sunlight sunny, so making sure you were prepared for all sorts of weather was key.

Here is what I recommend bringing: (side note: I'm a big believer in shopping local, so Fayettechill and Bearded Goat will show up frequently on my gear list because they are local to Fayetteville, AR!)

Apparel: LAYER UP



  • Mountian House Pro Packs (Chili Mac with Beef and Biscuits & Gravy are my favs!)
  • There is also local food available at the campground, so bring some cash!

This seems like a lot, which is probably was and I most likely didn't NEED all this stuff. However, I was super comfortable and prepared for all the parts of this trip, like cold weather, water crossings, and warms temps during the day. I could’ve dropped a few things, but if you can fit it and you’re not uncomfortable, why not?

I hope this helps! 

We want to acknowledge and thank the past, present, and future generations of all Native Nations and Indigenous Peoples whose ancestral lands we travel, explore, and play on. Always practice Leave No Trace ethics on your adventures and follow local regulations. Please explore responsibly!

Tyler McKay

Living for adventure. Full time Law Student, part-time explorer. Always planning the next adventure. Currently in Fayetteville, AR.