The Best Hikes in Arches National Park

Arches National Park Nov 2020-02188

Dreaming of visiting Utah’s Mighty 5, seeing stunning natural arches, and walking on a fascinating red-rock planet? Well, you’ll find all of this and more in Arches National Park, so read on to find the best hikes in the park.

Plus, if you’re looking for some practical information about visiting the park, where to stay nearby, and places to eat, then make sure to read my complete guide to visiting Arches National Park.

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Arches National Park Best Hikes

1 – Delicate Arch

Delicate Arch is definitely one of the must-do hikes in Arches National Park. Why? The reward at the end of the hike is to gaze upon the largest free-standing natural arch in the park, at 46 feet high and 32 feet wide.

Getting to Delicate Arch requires a 3-mile moderate hike (round trip). The trail starts at the Wolfe Ranch and in the beginning, the path is very clear. However, as the trail continues, trail markers become harder to find, so make sure to follow the cairns along the way.

As you hike there will be a steady climb over the rock face and then it’ll level out. By the time you’re almost arriving at the Delicate Arch, you’ll walk along a rock ledge for about 200 yards, but don’t worry, the ledge is wide enough to pass without problems.

Please bear in mind that there’s no shade throughout the hike to Delicate Arch, so be sure to carry lots of water. This hike is a trendy place for sunrise and sunset (the best time to photograph the arch), therefore the parking lot may fill up quickly at these hours. I made my way up during sunrise and it was great, but if you also want to go during this time, make sure to have a headlamp and the offline GPS coordinates/map to help with orientation.

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Now if you don’t want to hike all the way up to Delicate Arch, you can still appreciate it from the available wheelchair-accessible viewpoints. The lower viewpoint requires a 100-yard walk, while the upper one a 0.5-mile walk with stairs.

 

2 – Landscape Arch

Landscape Arch is part of the Devil’s Garden area in Arches National Park and is the largest arch on the planet, stretching 306 feet wide.

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The hike to Landscape Arch is one of the easiest in the park; an easy 1.9-mile trail that is relatively flat and with little elevation gain with only mild ups and downs along the way.

If you’d like to see other arches in the park, on your way to or from Landscape Arch you can make a quick detour to the side trails to see Pine Tree Arch and Tunnel Arch.

After seeing the Landscape Arch, you can either turn back or continue to a more challenging hike to Double O Ach.

 

3 – Double O Arch

If you are in the Devil’s Garden area, already visited Landscape Arch, and are still up for a strenuous stunning hike then make your way up to Double O Arch. This is a very popular hike in Arches National Park and offers stunning views.

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Seeing Double O Arch requires a strenuous hike of 4.1 miles climbing over sandstone fins. In some parts, you’ll need to use your hands and feet to scramble and climb.

 

4 – Double Arch

Double Arch (not to be confused with Double O Arch) is another favorite hike in Arches National Park. This is a quick 0.5-mile easy trail from The Windows parking lot and, even though you can see it as soon as you park, be sure to take the short walk to admire it from its base.

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When you arrive at Double Arch, you’ll see the colossal (almost alien) arches that are linked to each other forming one single structure. Then you’ll understand why, due to its features and scale, the arch has the title of the tallest and second-longest arch in Arches National Park.

Once you’ve taken in Double Arch, head back to and cross the parking lot to find The Windows and Turret Arch on the other side.

 

5 – The Windows and Turret Arch

Along this easy trail, you’ll walk 100 yards to see North Window, South Window, and Turret Arch.

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There is also a primitive trail around The Windows where you can distance yourself from the crowds and wander amongst the more natural and untouched landscape in Arches National Park.

 

6 – Park Avenue and Courthouse Towers

On the Park Avenue trail, you’ll walk 2 miles amongst massive rock formations and towering rock walls with great views of the La Sal Mountains. Additionally, on this hike, you can walk through the canyon and see the impressive Courthouse Towers.

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Even though there are no arches along the Park Avenue trail, it is still one of the best hikes in Arches National Park to appreciate the scale of the rock formations and layers in the area.

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Ps:  all distances in the post are round trip.

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Continue your trip from Arches National Park to Monument Valley.

For other must-see places in the Southwest, read the complete guide to Horseshoe Bend, in Arizona.

Want to visit another National Park? Keep reading Guide to visiting Rocky Mountain National Park and a 3-day itinerary to visit it.

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