Hwal'bay means People of the Tall Pines. These members

of the Hualapai Tribe live on a reservation encompassing a

million acres along 108 miles of the Colorado River and the

Grand Canyon. The reservation is mostly rolling hills, rugged

mesas, forests, breathtaking cliffs and deep gorges. An

Executive Order created the reservation in 1883. Peach Springs,

the Tribal Capital, 50 miles east of Kingman on Historic

Highway 66, owes its name to peach trees growing at springs

nearby. The railroad established a water station in the early

1880s and called it Peach Springs. Valentine, another community

on the reservation named after the Commissioner of

Indian Affairs in 1910, is nearby.

Rapid economic, social and governmental progress characterizes

the reservation's recent history. More than 200 new

homes have been built recently. About 14 miles of town streets

have been paved and curbed. An improved community water

and sewer system provides infrastructure for future growth.

The Hualapai Tribe has community-wide anti-drug and

anti-alcohol efforts and a yearly Sobriety Festival in June.

 

The tribal economy is based on tourism, river rafting, cattle

ranching, hunting expeditions, and timber cutting, as well as

crafting of traditional and modern folk arts.

The progressive tribal government is showing off the treasures

of the Hualapai half of Grand Canyon to admirers worldwide.

Grand Canyon West attracts more than 3,000 guests

each month. Business matters are guided by the Hualapai

Enterprise Board, a committee of independent, business-mind-ed

tribal members and non-members. Tribal, public school,

state and federal governmental services provide the bulk of

full-time employment. Hualapai River Running is the only

Indian-owned and operated river rafting company on the

Colorado River. It offers one- and two-day Indian-guided trips

for tourists of all ages. Hualapai Wildlife Conservation sells big game

hunting permits for Rocky Mountain bighorn sheep, trophy

elk, antelope and mountain lion.

 

Hualapai Folk Arts offers a variety of other traditional and

modern arts for sale. A store, gas station and deli, along Historic

Route 66, serve tribal and travelers' needs. Peach Springs Canyon

offers the only road into the Grand Canyon: Diamond Creek Road.

The tribe maintains the road allowing conditional access by car or truck and issues sightseeing permits. Historic Route 66, America's “Mother Road,” goes through

the center of Peach Springs. Grand Canyon Caverns, just east of

Peach Springs, offers guided tours through chambers 21 stories

underground. Food and lodging are available.