Photo: Arlene Waller/Shutterstock

Arizona's Seasonal 'Chocolate Falls' Are Taller Than Niagara Falls

Arizona Outdoor
by Olivia Harden Aug 6, 2022

If you’ve ever wanted to see something like the chocolate falls from Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory, you might want to take an impromptu trip to Arizona. A natural phenomenon only happens a few times a year has made its way to the Navajo Nation.

@djandthelou 6 years in AZ & there is still so much beauty to be seen!!!😁 #grandfalls #az #desert #flagstaff #waterfall #navajonation #chocolatefalls #arizona #monsoon ♬ Electric Pow Wow Drum – The Halluci Nation

The Grand Falls, nicknamed the “chocolate falls,” is located 30 miles East of Flagstaff in the Painted Desert. At its peak, the falls reach over 181 feet tall, which is taller than Niagara Falls. According to the Navajo Tourism Board, the water comes from the Little Colorado River, which is made up of water from Mount Baldy 140 miles southeast and other smaller creeks from the Colorado Plateau. When the water is not gushing, only a trickle makes its way through. To get the full effect, you can check the water gauge — if the reading is in the thousands, the tourism board says to make your way there within the next 24-48 hours. Because the wonder is seasonal, travelers flock to the area to take it in.

Grand Falls is very accessible. If you want to hike to the gully, the trek is less than a half-mile long, but be careful since the ground can be pretty muddy. But there’s no need to hike to take in the view. There are also gazebos, picnic tables, benches, and bathrooms. Although it’s recommended to have a car with four-wheel drive, it’s not necessary. Just be sure to drive slow and carefully. And remember that this is sacred land, so be sure to leave no trace.

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