When you visit Arches National Park you will find yourself surrounded by majestic red rock formations. Named after its over 2,000 natural sandstone arches, Arches National Park is a bucket-list destination for all hiking and nature enthusiasts.
Where Red Rocks Meet Blue Sky
An abundance of recreational activities, such as hiking, biking, rock climbing, camping and canyoneering, are possible to visitors although permits may be required for some. Arches National Park has several distinctive rock formations and arches that should be on your “places to see” list:
Balanced Rock is an iconic landmark of Arches National Park. The top boulder is sandstone which sits on an eroding pedestal of mudstone leading to a 128 feet (39 meter) tall stone formation. Because of the continuous erosional process it is expected that the balanced rock will eventually collapse. That’s why we love sharing this jaw-dropping scenery with our clients. While the Balanced Rock is visible from the road, there is a parking lot with a trailhead to the base of the rock. The hike is very short (0.3 miles round trip) but allows you to gain a different perspective of this majestic feature.
This free standing arch is a famous geological feature and has become a recognized symbol of the state of Utah. There are a couple options to view Delicate Arch. Either you can visit the lower viewpoint, which is an easy 10 to 30-minute walk or you can climb a moderately strenuous trail to the upper viewpoint. Alternatively, you can hike to the delicate arch which is a 2-3 hour round trip. However, the trail has no shade and climbs 480 feet (146 meters) up a fairly steep slope. Please don’t underestimate the trail and consider weather conditions before you embark on the hike.
Close to the delicate arch is the Wolfe Ranch, built in the early 1900s. It’s a great detour and approximately 10 to 15 minutes from the parking lot. The Wolfe Ranch will give you an idea of how people lived centuries ago.
Devil’s garden is a paradise for hikers of all skill levels. Furthermore, this area of the park offers camping opportunities, backpacking, and stargazing with a backdrop like no other. Devil’s Garden is famous for its Landscape Arch, the longest arch in North America with a width of 6 feet (1.8 meters) at its narrowest.
Landscape Arch is accessible by means of an easy 1.9-mile (3.1 kilometers) round trip hike. There is no significant gain in elevation. On the way to Landscape Arch you will find two more easy trails to Pine Tree Arch and Tunnel Arch. If you’re looking for a more difficult trail, head to Double O Arch. It’s a 4.2-mile (6.8 kilometer) round trip and offers stunning views of Arches National Park. The hike does include a steep climb on sandstone fins with steep drop-offs. Because the footing is rocky, be sure to wear proper hiking attire and be cautious.
The Windows Section
The windows section is one of the most popular locations in the park due to its high concentration of arches, such as the Double Arch, North Window, and Turret Arch. Further scenic views include Elephant Butte as well as the Parade of Elephants, and Garden of Eden.
There are two easy hiking options. Very popular is the walk to the double arches even though they are visible from the parking lot. The walk takes 15 to 30 minutes (round trip) and guarantee stunning views of the tallest and second-longest arch in Utah’s National Park. Alternative trails lead to explore the North and South window as well as Turret Arch.