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Thread: Finally Made It to Arches!

  1. #1
    Senior Member TJsName's Avatar
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    Finally Made It to Arches!

    I visited Arches in late February as part of a trip from Denver to Salt Lake City. It was a fairly small detour from the route, but we still stayed a couple nights in Moab for about $100/night.

    The park is relatively small - it was about 30 minutes from the entrance gate to the Devil's Garden trail head. The drive to and from the trail head was beautiful, with many spots to pull over and view things. Definitely a place for people with all abilities.

    We did the Primitive Loop, which had a couple of spots that would have been tricky if there were slippery from water or ice, but it was dry and clear for us. We visited all the arches along this loop (including the spurs), so for about 7 miles of hiking (and ~1000' of elevation) we were able to see a lot. 90% of the crowd only makes it to Landscape Arch (which is the biggest, and is really quite amazing). From there, we only saw a handful of people on the way to Double O (in addition to our favorite - Partition - and Navajo). On the 'rough' part of the loop we saw two other couples, and were otherwise alone. We skipped 'Dark Angel', for those familiar with the area.

    After the hike we drove over to the Delicate Arch overlook and it's underwhelming after being up close, but with rain moving in (and being sick) we opted to skip the 3 mile hike (and the crowds) to see it up-close. It started raining shortly after we got back to our room validating our decision.

    Looking forward to visiting Canyonlands at some point down the line!
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  2. #2
    Senior Member maineguy's Avatar
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    Arches is cool. We visited Arches and Canyonlands (as well as Dead Horse State Park) on the same trip. What really amazed me about the two parks is that they appear (at least to me) to be polar opposites of each other. In Arches, everything is jutting up from the ground and in Canyonlands everything is plunging down into the ground. And they are just across the highway from each other! Utah has great National Parks. Been to all of them except Capitol Reef.

  3. #3
    Senior Member ChrisB's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by maineguy View Post
    Arches is cool. We visited Arches and Canyonlands, .....Utah has great National Parks. Been to all of them except Capitol Reef.
    Yup, both are great parks and national treasures. Should be on everyone's bucket list.

    We spent three days exploring Island in the Sky across the road from the Arches park headquarters. It was magic to camp there and watch the colors change as the sun angle moved across the sky. The night sky was positively breathtaking. I can't wait to get back to that area. (And lots of fun friction hiking/scrambling on the many formations along the trails.)

    Rented an Escape Campervan out of Vegas and did a two-week grand tour around most SW parks. A fun and inexpensive way to go. The camper was basically a Ford E 150 van and could go anywhere without restrictions. Dubbed "Elmer Fudd" because of the colorfully painted characters on its exterior, it was also a bit of a conversation piece!

    We were there in April and enjoyed warm days and cool nights. Great place to read Abby's Mokey Wrench Gang as well.
    Last edited by ChrisB; 03-03-2020 at 07:52 AM.
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