All travel off the main road into the Hualapai Reservation requires a permit; the cost is currently (2014) around $30 per person. They may be purchased from the Hualapai Lodge, in the center of Peach Springs on US 66.
The track down to the Colorado starts from the end of a residential street at the northeast edge of town; for the first few miles, the road passes along a dry, dusty stream bed in a small canyon, past clumps of trees and bushes, and then crosses more open land with scattered cacti - close to the springs after which canyon and town are named. The canyon proper starts 6 miles from town - the road through it is quite straight and the surface is fine for normal cars although a bit uneven in places. As the canyon deepens, the types of cacti and other plants change noticeably, especially in early summer when they are in flower. There are distinct bands of large white lilies, clusters of purple echinocacti, various colors of opuntia, and finally ocotillo and large ferocacti at the lowest elevations near the river.
The surrounding cliffs become steadily higher and more impressive, and several side canyons join from both sides, including the ominous-sounding Hells Canyon. The last branch is Diamond Creek Canyon
, which has water flowing through all year round. The road then crosses the creek about 6 times, and for a short distance runs along the streambed. The water was at most 4 inches deep in late June, but may of course be much deeper at other times. There is a car park and camping area just before the first stream crossing. 1.5 miles after the creek is first encountered, the road emerges onto a wide, sandy beach beside the Colorado river, a total journey time of almost 2 hours.
Each morning, the Hualapai Indians drive down from Peach Springs with rafts and passengers, for accompanied trips down river - the boats emerge at Pearce Ferry
in late afternoon (places are not cheap though, costing around $200 per person). A few other people make the journey for day trips, but this remote corner of the Grand Canyon is generally peaceful and little-visited. The temperature is always at least 20° hotter at the river compared with the land around the main road (US 66) due to the 3,400 foot elevation difference; it often exceeds 100° for 4 months of the year. There is also a big contrast in water temperatures - the fast-moving Colorado is always cold - 60° in June whereas the much gentler flow of Diamond Creek is a pleasant 80°.