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Arches National Park

The world's largest concentration of natural sandstone arches.

  • Hike the 1.5 mile trail leading to the base of Delicate Arch to experience one of the most breathtaking vistas in the world.
  • Your family will love the short trails in the Windows Section that lead right up to several massive arches.
  • Hike through the spectacular red rock canyon of Park Avenue and continue on to massive Courthouse Towers.
  • Drive the 18 mile paved scenic drive to enjoy all of the major viewpoints and trailheads within the park.
  • Experience a wide variety of hikes, from short ten minute walks to five hour hikes into some of the more remote sections of the park.
  • Enjoy the many family friendly hikes in Arches National Park.
  • Winter brings a blanket of pristine snow to Arches, providing dramatic contrast to the surrounding red rocks.
  • Stop by the Arches Visitor Center which features interactive exhibits, educational kiosks, a 150-seat auditorium and a gift shop.
  • The short trail to Sand Dune Arch travels between some narrow sandstone fins before arriving at a natural sandbox beneath the arch.
  • A light dusting of snow adds a surreal quality to the park.
  • Stay in the beautiful Devils Garden Campground, located eighteen miles from the park entrance. The campground is open year-round.
Distance from Moab 5 miles (8 km)
Directions from Moab The entrance to Arches is located 5 miles (8 km) north of Moab, along Highway 191.
Park Hours Open year-round, 24 hours/day
Entrance Fee $10/vehicle - Good for 7 days (Subject to change)
Visitor Center & Hours The visitor center includes interactive exhibits, educational kiosks, a 150-seat auditorium, and a bookstore featuring guide books, maps, DVD's, postcards, and much more.  The park is open 24 hours/day, 365 days/year; however the visitor center hours vary by season.  (435) 719-2299 

Located just 5 miles (8 km) north of Moab is Arches National Park, which contains the world's largest concentration of natural sandstone arches. Although over 2,000 arches are located within the park's 76,518 acres, the park also contains an astounding variety of other geological formations. Colossal sandstone fins, massive balanced rocks, soaring pinnacles and spires dwarf visitors as they explore the park's viewpoints and hiking trails.  A paved scenic drive takes visitors to many of the major viewpoints within the park.  The park’s rock formations delight children as well as adults, with many easy trails providing opportunities for kids to get out of the car and explore the arches up close.  Hikers can choose from a wide variety of trails, from short twenty minute walks leading right up to many of the largest arches in the park, to more adventurous hikes into lesser seen areas.

Suggested Activities

AVAILABLE TIME SUGGESTED ACTIVITIES
2-3 hours Drive the 36 mile (58 km) round trip Scenic Drive.
1/2 day Drive the Scenic Drive and hike some of the easy short trails in the park, such as the Park Avenue Trail and trails in the Windows Section of the park.
Full Day Drive the Scenic Drive and hike some of the longer trails in the park, such as the trails to Double O Arch, Tower Arch, Delicate Arch, and Landscape Arch.
Several Days Hikers can experience a wide variety of hiking trails, including some of the lesser-seen, yet equally spectacular, areas of the park such as the "Primitive Loop" in the Devil's Garden Section of the park.

Getting Around

A paved scenic drive takes visitors to all of the major viewpoints within the park.

Scenic Drive in Arches National Park
An 18 mile paved scenic drive leads to all the
major viewpoints and trailheads within the park.

Location

The entrance to Arches is located only 5 mi (8 km) north of Moab, along Hwy 191.


 

Camping

The Devils Garden Campground is located eighteen miles from the park entrance and is open year-round. Facilities include potable water, picnic tables, grills, as well as both pit-style and flush toilets. There are no showers. Bring your own wood or charcoal for the grills. Some sites will accommodate RVs up to 30 feet in length.Telephone and on-line reservations for both group and individual sites may be made through recreation.gov. Reservations are not accepted by the park, and the park does not maintain information about site availability.

  • Individual Sites

The campground has 50 individual sites which are $20 per night and will accommodate up to ten people.  These sites may be reserved for nights between March 1st and October 31st.  Reservations must be made no less than four days and no more than 180 days in advance. There is an additional $9 booking fee for reservations. To make a reservation, visit recreation.gov, or call (877) 444-6777, (877) 833-6777 (TDD), or (518) 885-3639. During the winter months (November 1st to February 28th) sites 1 - 24 are available on a self-serve basis at the campground.  

  • Group Sites

The campground has two sites for groups of eleven or more people. The Juniper Basin campsite will accommodate up to 55 people; the Canyon Wren campsite up to 35. The group camping fee is $3 per person per night, with a $33 per night minimum. No recreational vehicles or trailers are permitted in the group sites. The Canyon Wren group campsite may be reserved year-round. Juniper Basin is available from March 1st to October 31st. Reservations must be made no less than 4 days and no more than 360 days in advance. There is an additional $9 booking fee for reservations. To make a reservation, visit recreation.gov or call (877) 444-6777, (877) 833-6777 (TDD), or (518) 885-3639. Unreserved group campsites are available on a first-come, first-served basis on the day of arrival.

Lodging

No lodging is available within the park. The closest lodging is located within the town of Moab, just 5 miles south of the entrance to the park.

Moab has hotels & motels, bed & breakfasts, resorts and a large variety of guest houses and condos. Several property management companies can even take the hassle out of finding the right accommodations. Click here for a complete list of all the lodging options available in the Moab area.

Hiking

One of the more rewarding ways to see the park is on foot. Arches features a wide variety of hikes, from short 10 minute walks (suitable for all ages) to 4 hour hikes into some of the remote sections of the park.

Arches Hiker
Hiking in the Windows Section
Fiery Furnace Hikers
Ranger Guided Fiery Furnace Hike
Easy Trails Length Time Required Description
Balanced Rock .3 mi (5. km) round trip 15-30 min A loop trail around the base of a fragile, picturesque rock formation.
Broken Arch 1.2 mi (2 km) round trip or 2 mi (3.2 km) with loop 30-60 min From the Sand Dune Arch parking area, the trail cuts across a large meadow to the arch and continues to the campground. Loop trail leads through fin canyons with sand dunes and slickrock.
Delicate Arch Viewpoint  100 yards (91 meters) round trip 10-15 min In addition to the short accessible trail, another (moderately strenuous) hiking trail climbs one-half mile (0.8 km) toward Delicate Arch and ends at the rim of a steep canyon that separates the viewpoint from the arch. (This is not the popular trail to Delicate Arch, which starts at the Wolfe Ranch parking area.  See below.)
Desert Nature Trail  0.2 mi (0.3 km) round trip 15-30 min Discover the adaptations of plants and animals in the desert on a self-guided nature walk. Trail guide available at the trailhead near the Visitor Center.
Double Arch  0.5 mi (0.8 km) round trip 15-30 min A relatively flat, sandy trail leads to the base of two giant arch spans which are joined at one end.
Landscape Arch  2 mi (3.2 km) round trip 30-60 min A relatively flat, gravel-surfaced trail leads to a spectacular ribbon of rock, whose span is more than a football field in length. Short side trips to Tunnel and Pine Tree Arches. 
Sand Dune Arch  0.4 mi (0.6 km) round trip 15-30 min Trail leads through deep sand to a secluded arch among sandstone fins.  Kids love the sand!
Skyline Arch  0.4 mi (0.6 km) round trip 10-20 min A short hike on a flat, well-defined trail. 
The Windows  1 mi (1.6 km) round trip 30-60 min A gentle climb up a gravel loop trail leads to three massive arches (North and South Windows and Turret Arch). An alternate return, slightly longer, is by way of the primitive loop around the back of the two Windows. The primitive loop trail starts at the South Window viewpoint.
Moderate Trails Length Time Required Description
Park Avenue  1 mi (1.6 km) one way 30-60 min From Park Avenue parking area, the trail descends steeply into a spectacular canyon and continues down the wash to the Courthouse Towers parking area. If you have a shuttle driver, you can begin at one parking area and be picked up at the other. For round-trip hiking, retrace your steps along the trail.
Tower Arch  3.4 mi (5.6 km) round trip 2-3 hrs The trail climbs a steep, but short, rock wall, then cuts across a valley and then meanders through sandstone fins and sand dunes. An alternate, shorter trail (0.3 mile [0.4 km] one way), begins at the end of the four-wheel-drive road on the west side of Tower Arch. This unpaved road washes out quickly in rainstorms; inquire at the visitor center about road conditions before heading out.
Difficult Trails Length Time Required Description
Devils Garden Primitive Loop  7.2 mi (11.5 km) round trip 3-5 hrs Longest of the maintained trails in the park, the Devils Garden Trail leads to eight awe-inspiring arches. Expect narrow ledges with rocky surface hiking and scrambling on slickrock. Not recommended when rock is wet or snowy.
Double O Arch 4 mi (6.4 km) round trip 2-3 hrs Beyond Landscape Arch, the trail becomes more challenging as it climbs over sandstone slabs; footing is rocky; there are narrow ledges with exposure to heights. Spur trails lead to Partition and Navajo Arches. Dark Angel is one-half mile (0.8 km) farther. Trail guide available at trailhead.
Delicate Arch 3 mi (4.8 km) round trip 2-3 hrs Take at least 1 quart (1 liter) of water per person! There is no shade. Open slickrock with some exposure to heights. The first half-mile is a wide, well-defined trail. Upon reaching the slickrock, follow the rock cairns. The trail climbs gradually and levels out toward the top of this rock face. Just before you get to Delicate Arch, the trail goes along a rock ledge for about 200 yards. Elevation change: 480 feet (146 meters)

Fiery Furnace Ranger Guided Hikes

Fiery Furnace walks are offered daily, spring through fall. These three hour hikes wind through terrain that requires scrambling up and through narrow cracks and along narrow ledges above drop-offs. Children under five are not permitted. Main-season tickets (March - October) may be reserved at recreation.gov or by calling (877) 444-6777; off-season tickets (February and November) must be purchased in person at the visitor center. Walks are limited to 25 people and often fill in advance.

Other Guided Walks

Rangers also lead easy, one-hour walks each day at different locations throughout the park. Evening Programs Join a ranger at the Devils Garden campground amphitheater (next to Canyon Wren group campsite and across the road from campsite #25) nightly. Programs last about forty-five minutes. A current schedule is available at the Arches Visitor Center.

Photography

Arches National Park is a paradise for photographers. Under conditions of constantly changing light, the red rock landscape provides limitless photographic opportunities.

Arches National Park

Often, the difference between an average photograph and an exceptional photograph is good lighting. Low sun angles at sunrise and sunset can add brilliant color to the red rock. Scattered clouds can also add depth to an image and a passing storm can provide extremely dramatic lighting.

Below are some of the best times to photograph the major features at Arches National Park:

Early Morning Late Afternoon
Moab Fault Park Avenue
The Three Gossips Courthouse Towers
Sheep Rock Petrified Dunes
The Great Wall Balanced Rock
Turret Arch The Garden of Eden
The Spectacles North and South Windows
Double Arch Delicate Arch
Cache Valley Fiery Furnace
Wolfe Ranch Skyline Arch
Landscape Arch Fins in Devil Garden
Double O Arch Tower Arch

Delicate Arch - Not Just for Photographers

Over one million people visit Arches National Park every year, and just about everyone wants to see all of the major views within the park.  One of the most heavily visited arches is Delicate Arch. As a result of its popularity, you should always expect to see people surrounding this world famous arch. Although it may occasionally happen, it is unrealistic to expect a solitary experience around Delicate Arch.  Be courteous to other visitors during your visit to the arch, and do not expect people to move away from this world famous landmark during your photographs. Remember that not everyone who visits this arch is a photographer. Most people simply want to experience the joy of standing next to such a beautiful landmark.  People can add scale to any photo of Delicate Arch, so make your visit a great shared experience for everyone involved. 

Try not to limit your creativity by simply capturing images of iconic places using the same composition as countless photographers before you. Arches National Park contains thousands of arches and vast expanses of breathtaking scenery just waiting for you to introduce your own personal style and interpretation. For those seeking solitude, Arches has much to offer beyond its iconic places. For example, consider a hike to Double O Arch, returning via the Primitive Trail, for some of the most spectacular scenery in the park. Just remember to bring enough memory cards to capture all of the great views!

Park Publications

The following National Park Service publications are identical to the ones that you will receive at the entrance station to the park.

Arches Visitor Guide Arches Map
Arches Newspaper Arches Map

Park Updates

Park Highlights

Balanced Rock

Balanced Rock
A short paved trail leads visitors to the base of Balanced Rock. The landform's total height is 128 feet, with the huge balanced rock rising 55 feet above its base.

Landscape Arch

Landscape Arch
The longest natural rock span in the world, this arch's opening is 306 feet wide - 6 feet longer than a football field. A nine story building would easily fit beneath this thin span. In 1991, a massive slab of rock fell from its underside, resulting in an even thinner ribbon of rock.

Spring Wildlfowers

Arches Wildflowers
April and May bring a variety of desert wildflowers to Arches.

Double Arch

Double Arch
Located in the Windows Section of Arches National Park, Double Arch was used as a backdrop for portions of the 1988 movie "Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade". Numerous other movies have been filmed in Arches National Park, including Thelma and Louise in 1991.

Delicate Arch

Delicate Arch
A 1.5 mile trail (500 foot elevation gain) leads to the base of Delicate Arch, possibly the most famous natural span in the world. The La Sal Mountains are visible through the opening in the arch.

Park Avenue

Park Avenue
From Park Avenue parking area, the trail descends steeply into a spectacular canyon and continues down the wash to Courthouse Towers. If you have a shuttle driver, you can begin at one point and be picked up at the other. For round-trip hiking, retrace your steps along the trail rather than walk along the park road.

Arches in Winter

Arches National Park in Winter
Winter brings a blanket of pristine snow to Arches, providing dramatic contrast to the surrounding red rocks.

Family Hiking

Family Hiking in Arches
There are many family friendly hikes in Arches, including the hike to Turret Arch in the Windows Section.

Park Contact Info

Mailing Address
Arches National Park
P.O. Box 907
Moab, UT 84532

Website
www.nps.gov/arch/

Email
archinfo@nps.gov

Phone
General Info
(435) 719-2299

General Info TTY
(435) 719-2319

Group Campsite Reservations
(435) 259-4351

Where to Stay

No lodging is available within the park. The closest lodging is located within the town of Moab, just 5 miles south of the entrance to the park.

Moab has hotels & motels, bed & breakfasts, resorts and a large variety of guest houses and condos. Several property management companies can even take the hassle out of finding the right accommodations. Click here for a complete list of all the lodging options available in the Moab area.

Nearby Campgrounds

In addition to the campground located within the park, there is a great selection of additional campgrounds in the surrounding area. Moab has many commercial campgrounds with RV hookups in addition to a huge assortment of BLM public campgrounds in extremely scenic locations. Click here for a complete list of all the camping options available in the Moab area.

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