The Havasupai Reservation is below the Colorado River and just south of Grand Canyon National Park. It is northeast of Peach Springs, Arizona. With the creation of the National Park, the Tribe was confined to an area of only 518 acres. It has since been returned lands and the reservation now totals 188,077 acres.[i]
The Tribe’s on-reservation population is around 500 people.[ii]
Although the Tribe has not yet settled its water rights claims, it has been assigned a federal negotiating team.
Current Water Sources
The Tribe relies on well water to meet its domestic needs.
Tribally run enterprises account for the majority of reservation businesses, and much of the Tribe’s revenue is derived from various tourist attractions on the reservation. One of the largest draws is the gorgeous Havasu and Mooney waterfalls north of the main village. If visitors obtain a permit, they may hike from the Supai village to the falls and camp there. In addition to collecting revenue from these permits, the Tribe runs helicopter and horseback trips into the Grand Canyon,[iii] and operates a travel center in the town of Supai that boasts a café, post office, store, tribal craft shop, and museum.[iv]
Water Resources Issues
The Tribe seems to regularly protest development and mining operations that threaten its water supply and water quality.[v]
Desired Water Uses
Of crucial importance to the Tribe is protecting the natural features of Havasu Canyon. The canyon is famous for its blue water and spectacular waterfalls.
P.O. Box 10 Supai AZ, 86435
Phone: (928) 448-2731
If you would like to learn more about the this tribe, click here to go to their website.
[i] Inter-Tribal Council of Arizona, Inc., Havasupai Tribe, http://itcaonline.com/?page_id=1160 (last visited April 23, 2013).
[ii] 465 people live on the reservation (U.S. Dept. of Commerce, U.S. Census Bureau, American Factfinder, http://factfinder2.census.gov/faces/tableservices/jsf/pages/productview.xhtml? (last visited April 23, 2013).); the population of the Havasupai Tribe is 639 (Inter-Tribal Council of Arizona, Inc. supra.).
[iii] Havasupai Tribe, http://www.havasupaitribe.com/index.html (last visited April 23, 2013).
[iv] Inter-Tribal Council of Arizona, Inc. supra.
[v] See Earthjustice, Grand Canyon Uranium Mining Ban Defended by Havasupai Tribe, Conservation Coalition, March 13, 2012, http://earthjustice.org/news/press/2012/grand-canyon-uranium-mining-ban-defended-by-havasupai-tribe-conservation-coalition; Cindy Cole, Tusayan water at issue, AZ Daily Sun, March 6, 2012, http://azdailysun.com/news/local/tusayan-water-at-issue/article_d7ae21e3-c1ba-5936-98d5-f373cee94445.html.