SEVEN CASCADES:  “Can I wear Flip Flops?”

The Tamarin River approaches the town of Tamarin from the east. On its way down from the central plateau to the coast, the river has to lose quite some altitude. It loses most of this altitude in a valley that is only a couple of kilomters long. We set out to explore this valley and its gorgeous SEVEN CASCADES! It proved to be a very beautiful but challenging hike.

The hike starts in a small town called Henrietta south-west of Phoenix. Our taxi driver first drove us to a viewing point from which we got a first impression of what to expect.

After another 5 minutes of driving, we were brought to the trail were our hike would begin. To the right we had a sugar cane field and on the left we assumed there was the Tamarin River. We could not see or hear it because of a thick forest stretched along the left side of the trail. We agreed with the taxi driver on a pickup time and went our way.

A couple hundred meters later we found a little trail leading right into the forest. We didn’t really know where to go so we headed right in, only to find ourselves on top of the first of the seven Waterfalls a couple of meters later.

From there was no way further, so we headed around and up to the trail next to the sugar cane. Another couple of hundred meters further we found another trail heading right into the bush.

Again we stumbled in, not knowing what to expect. And here it got challenging! The trail led us right down into the valley. And that was a decent alright. Slopes, so steep that you had to hang onto trees to be sure you won’t fall. Boulders, which reached up to my knee and block the way. The sun burning from above. But it was worth it! Ones the trail leveled out and the trees opened up we found ourselves deep in the valley faced with the most spectacular view.

After resting for a couple of minutes and taking some pictures we continued our way. The next waterfall was the most exiting one in my view. We followed a path left of the river and descended another steep slope. The trail did a sharp right-hand turn to lead us underneath a massive ledge. We could already hear the sound of water crashing down and a couple of meters further we were standing right behind the waterfall. It was a beautiful place. I immediately felt the urge to bury a treasure chest.

 

The next couple of waterfalls were smaller and not as spectacular, but then we reached waterfall number 6 and the trail basically ended. We saw people sitting and swimming down the valley, so it had to be possible to get down there. We discovered two different ways to reach the last waterfall: Jumping or climbing.

Both were very difficult and admittedly quite dangerous, but we didn’t give up! I decided that climbing was the safer option for me. So I went to the right of waterfall number 6 and started climbing. I had to climb rock with good grip about 1.5 - 2 meter. Then I had to reach over to a tree and climb it down. All in all a descent of maybe 3.5 - 4 meter. Some people decided that jumping into the water was the safer option. We had seen other people jump, so we knew the water was deep enough. We all made it down safely and found a landscape with a big pool and a lot of rocks which were perfect to lay down the towels.

The view was simply stunning and the pool was swarming with fish you would usually find in the aquarium at home. This also had the interesting side effect that you could basically get a free fish peeling!

 

The way up was similar to the way down. Steep, with big boulders and really hot. But it was longer because we had gone down all the waterfalls. We made it up and found ourselves next the same sugarcane field from before.

 

Seven cascades is not a long hike. With a couple of pauses it took us about four hours to do it. It gives you stunning views on the valley and Tamarin River. Nevertheless, it is a rather dangerous one. You need proper closed shoes, NO FLIP FLOPS! And you should know your own limits. If you are an experienced hiker you are going to find it doable without a guide. If you are inexperienced you better book a guide who knows the terrain well and can help you at the more difficult spots. Then it is going to be fun for everyone! For us it definitely was!

@Michael S.