Arches National Park is home to over 2,000 natural sandstone arches. Isn’t that unbelievable??
My mind is blown by the fact that this place was once just a huge slab of rock layer, and over the years these arches were formed through erosion. To this day, the place continues to erode, and the arches continue to fall apart. So if I were you, I would visit this place sooner than later.
Here are some of the arches and other rock formations you’ll get to see while you’re out there:
1. Double Arch
Just a short hike from the parking lot, and you’ll get to see this amazing arch formation, times two! Be sure to explore the area while you’re out here. It was fun to scramble over rocks to get to the second arch at the back, and it also gave wonderful views of the park.
2. Windows Arch
Yet another easy hike from the same parking lot as the Double Arch, you’ll find the short trail to the see the Windows Arches (aka The Spectacles). From afar, this looks like a face, complete with two eyes and a nose. Right?
3. Turret Arch
Directly south of the Windows Arches, you’ll find Turret Arch. I simply love how we got to park in one spot and actually saw so many amazing sandstone formations!
4. Parade of Elephants
Before you head back to the car from Turret Arch, check out the view of where the Double Arch is located. You’ll notice some rock formations which look like elephants! Do you see it?
5. Balanced Rock
The Balanced Rock is another popular feature in this national park. The height of this rock formation is about 128 feet, and it is said to be as large as three school buses! (source)
6. Delicate Arch
And of course, the ever so popular Delicate Arch! Now this is a must-do. Only a moderate 3.2 mile round-trip hike, very easy to get to, but beware of hot temps! The trail is completely exposed to the sun, and we encountered two people who got a heat stroke while we were out there. I advise going late in the afternoon, when temps are lower, plus it is much more gorgeous to view the arch during sunset.
During our visit, it reached 110 degrees. It was definitely impossible for us to go on mid-day hikes. It was quite a bummer, since I really wanted to explore more of this park. There are definitely so much more arches to see here, but I’d have to make a return trip for that. Next on my list is hiking the Devil’s Garden trail. If you’ve done this before, I’d love to hear about it!
NEED TO KNOW
Location: Arches National Park is located in eastern Utah, close to Moab.
Highlights: Home of over 2000 natural sandstone arches. One of Utah’s Mighty 5 National Parks.
Campsites: Devils Garden ($25/night) – available for reservation March 1 to October 31.
(*there are more campsite & lodging availabilities out in Moab)
Fees: $25 to enter the park per vehicle. You can also purchase the America the Beautiful Pass for $80, which gives you, and everyone inside your vehicle, access to all National Parks, and other federal recreation sites, for a whole year.
Other Notes: During the summer, temperatures can get really, really hot out here. Be sure to hydrate all the time and be aware of any signs of heat exhaustion or heat stroke. For any health concerns, inform park rangers immediately (they respond fast, from what i saw!)
Do you have a favorite arch or trail in this national park? Let me know what I should check out next time!
If you enjoyed this post, you will also enjoy reading my Canyonlands National Park posts! This place is right next to Arches National Park, so it’s something you shouldn’t miss while you’re out there.