Results 11-20of 22 Reviews
Jamesville, New York
January 23, 2003
For a unique view, take the ranger-led Fiery Furnace hike and view the fins up close. Hikes range from easy to difficult, so there is something for everyone. The Windows section of the park offers several easy hikes, including the North and South Windows, Turret Arch and Double Arch. More difficult hikes include Delicate Arch and the Devils Garden area of the park which includes eight arches. Be sure to carry water on all hikes.
From journal Moab...Gateway to Heaven
May 7, 2002
We started off thinking we’d just drive through the park and not venture off onto the hiking trails, but the beauty of the rocks got the better of us, and soon we found ourselves walking along the trails like everyone else before us. (Make sure you pack plenty of bottled water – you’ll need it – and in case you think you don’t, there are signposts everywhere telling you that you should). Of course we didn’t plan ahead, so we were stuck drinking from the few water fountains located at the beginning of each trail. Needless to say, we only took the short (half hour) hikes.
Arches National Park is roughly 80,000 acres of the most impressive landscape I’ve ever come across. A geologist’s dream, it’s populated by more than 2,000 natural sandstone arches, as well as balanced rocks and other naturally sculptured masterpieces. The scenic drive (36 miles round trip) will bring you to many of the major sights, but if you want to see some of the more impressive Arches, be prepared to walk a few miles to get to them. The massive red rocks change color as the sun moves across the sky – they say sunset at Delicate Arch is a sight not to be missed. If you don’t want to walk the 3 miles to get there, there’s another viewpoint right off the road where you can see it from a distance.
In the few hours that we were there, we managed to drive the entire scenic route and take three short trails to see the Balanced Rock, Double Arch, Sand Dune Arch, and Broken Arch, as well as the many unnamed rock formations along the way. A truly enjoyable trip – I highly recommend it!
From journal The Archway to Moab
Port Angeles, Washington
February 20, 2002
Delicate Arch is a world famous symbol of the American desert. It is almost a mandatory hike, but another alternative is to drive to the Delicate Arch viewpoint, and see it from one mile away (but its just not the same). The hike starts at Wolfe Ranch, and is 3 miles round trip with 480 feet of elevation gain/loss. The trail starts out as a typical dirt trail, but then changes into a hike on red slickrock - Watch for rock cairns (man-made pyramid shaped rock piles) and follow them. Sometimes you will see a worn down path in the rock, made from years of people walking to the arch. Along the way is spectacular redrock scenery. The great part about this hike is that you can’t actually see Delicate Arch until you get to it… which makes for kind of a dramatic end to the hike. You come around a rock formation, and there it is, in all it’s fame and glory. It is perched on the edge of a dropoff, with the scenic La Sal Mountains in the background. There is sort of a rock bench near the arch, which makes a natural seating and viewing area.
"A weird, lovely, fantastic object out of nature like Delicate Arch has the curious ability to remind us – like rock and sunlight and wind and wilderness – that out there is a different world, older and greater and deeper by far than ours, a world which surrounds and sustains the little world of men as sea and sky surround and sustain a ship. The shock of the real. For a little while we are again able to see, as the child sees, a world of marvels. For a few moments we discover that nothing can be taken for granted, for if this ring of stone is marvelous then all which shaped it is marvelous, and our journey here on earth, able to see and touch and hear in the midst of tangible and mysterious things-in-themselves, is the most strange and daring of all adventures." -- Edward Abbey
Another area that looked interesting (that we didn’t get to) is a maze of red fins called The Fiery Furnace. You need a permit (fee charged) to go into it, or you can go on a 3 hour ranger guided hike ($6 adults, $3 children). The guided hike happens twice daily (mid-March to October). Immensely popular, the limited spots fill up 1-2 days in advance. You can reserve spots 7 days ahead at the Visitor Center. More adventurous folks will like the lack of maintained trails, scrambling through narrow cracks, and moving along narrow ledges.
From journal Moab, as inspired by Edward Abbey
Arches National Park is located 5 miles north of Moab on Highway 191. The park consists of 73,000 acres, and it contains over 2000 red sandstone arches which are it’s claim to fame. The Entrance Fee is $10 per vehicle, and the pass is good for 7 days. There is one campground at Devil’s Garden, which has 52 sites, is first come-first serve, and usually fills by mid-morning. The cost is $10 per night. Arches is considered a "high desert" which means very HOT summers, and very COLD winters. The best time to visit is definitely spring and fall, when the temperatures are pleasant and there is little or no precipitation.
The arches were formed over time by erosion, and are interesting because they represent millions of years of geologic history. Also, no two arches are alike – they range in size from 3 feet to 306 feet. The most famous arch in the park is Delicate Arch, but there are so many more! Many are named and can be seen from the road, but countless others have no name (find one and name it after yourself!) and are hidden treasures waiting to be found. Complimenting the arches are other rock formations, including fins, spires, and balanced rocks. One area that looked interesting was the Fiery Furnace… see further notes in my Arches National Park – Hike to Delicate Arch and Fiery Furnace" entry.
We started our trip by stopping at the Visitor Center to check out their displays and get information. Then we decided to drive all the main roads to see the many different arches and viewpoints – we drove the Windows Section first, then drove to the Devil’s Garden area. Having seen the roadside sights, we knew we had to get out on a trail and see the arches closer up. From the parking area at Devil’s Garden, we hiked 2 miles to see Landscape Arch, the largest arch in the park. There were a lot of people on the trail, so on the way back, we took an alternative trail called the Primitive Loop. The primitive loop trail is less maintained and has few arches, but we totally lost the crowd and had the trail to ourselves. All together, we hiked 5 miles roundtrip and saw maybe a dozen arches, great redrock, cryptobiotic crust, and lizards! I definitely recommend this hike.
by Alan Ingram
August 4, 2001
Several excursions are necessary to explore the many fantastic features of the
extensive park. A first foray was an all-day hike from the campsite through an arid
waste of wierd, wind-battered rocks including seven of the amazing arches - the most
spectacular was "Landscape Arch" with its astounding 300 foot span - one of the
longest in the world and only a matter of time before it collapses. I was almost back at
my tent when the sky suddenly darkened and a fierce sand storm blasted through the
rocks - a taste of the elemental forces in action.
A second foray via the abandoned log cabins of "Wolfe Ranch" and across a bare rock
plateau led to the elegant and astonishing "Delicate Arch" poised on the outer edge of
a huge sandstone bowl. Framed within its portals lay the distant, snow-capped peaks
of La Sals. A third foray through the mountain-desert wilderness of the Klondike
Bluffs gained the secluded "Tower Arch" in a remote corner of the park.
Reference "High Adventure around the World"
From journal Journey down the Colorado River
February 3, 2001
From journal Utah Horseback
by unorthodox traveler
January 12, 2001
From journal Spectacular Moab
December 30, 2000
From journal Horseback Riding in Utah
by Amy Travels
Bethel Park, Pennsylvania
December 3, 2000
Admission to Arches National Park is $10/car. Admission is included if you have a valid National Park Pass.
There is a visitor center at the entrance to the park. However, there is no food or fuel available. My recommendation is to fuel up (on food and fuel) before entering the park.
There are a lot of good hikes for people who do not normally do a lot of hiking (like me!)
We never such large boulders as the ones we saw on the Park Avenue hike. Some had to be over 12 feet tall!
The Windows Loop Trail is a one mile round-trip trail that takes anywhere from 30-60 minutes. On this trail, you can hike to North and South Windows and Turret Arch. Across the parking lot is the Double Arch Trail. This is a .5 mile round-trip trail to two giant arch spans which are joined at one end. This flat, sandy trail takes about 15-30 minutes. While we were at Arches, there were ranger-led hikes to Double Arch. This proved to be a good opportunity to learn more about the animals and plants in the region.
We also hiked from the Delicate Arch parking area to the Delicate Arch Viewpoint. This is nice alternative to the popular trail to Delicate Arch, as it is short (100 yards round-trip) and accessible.
We would have liked to do more hikes in Arches. But unfortunately, our time in Moab was limited, and there was a lot to see.
From journal Memorial Day Weekend in Moab
December 2, 2000
Canyonlands NP is about 10 miles south of Moab. The park is divided into sections by rivers. We visited the "Island in the sky" district.
Awesome scenery abounds, and it is accessible by trails, roads, and even some four-wheel-drive road which were fun.
My daughter and I loved four-wheel driving (allowed with permit) in the creek beds, but my wife wasn't impressed. You do need to be careful, because you can become remotely stranded, and rescue/tow can cost thousands of dollars.
From journal Two Days in Moab