I was there last weekend and there was as much water there as there ever is. The pipe that was mentioned comes out of a pool wich collects from the same source. Hackberry is one of the only springs that reliably has water all year long in the northern supes. As such it is the primary watering hole for a lot of wildlife; tread lightly! The water from the pipe is drinkable without filtering or treating (although I still filter or treat it) and the water from the pool should be treated no matter what. The "stagnant" smell comes from the fact that there is water there all year long, the only water that is lost from the spring is lost through evaporation, there is virtually no runnoff. In any event, the water conditions there are as good as can be expected.
When I was there last someone had put up a bunch of reflectors on the canyon walls (like the ones you might have on your bike). They were glued to the rock with what looked like liquid nails. There were about five of them. I can't imagine why someone would put them up...
Cogito ergo ambulo cum sacculo