Devils Garden Trail in Arches National Park, Utah

Another extremely popular hiking trail in Arches National Park is the Devils Garden Trail. One of the reasons for its popularity is the diversity of the trail as well as the number of arches that can be seen on the trail. The first part of the trail is considered easy and also provides views of three arches, including the Landscape Arch, which was one of our favorites. After reaching the Landscape Arch, the trail becomes more difficult as you head toward Double O Arch and then the second half of the loop is extremely difficult where you need to rock scramble and there a steep slopes. For obvious reasons, many people only go as far as Landscape Arch, which was what we did as well.

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Landscape Arch – One of Our Favorite Arches
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Not a Difficult Trail
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Interesting Scenery on Devils Garden Trail
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Pine Tree Arch
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Tunnel Arch

In addition to hiking Devils Garden Trail, there are also some shorter trails in the area just before you reach Devils Garden that are worth exploring as well. We did the short hike to see Skyline Arch, which was definitely worth seeing. We also hiked to Sand Dune Arch, which was a short trail, but the sand was deep making it a little harder on the legs. We did not hike all of the way to Broken Arch, but it is clearly visible from the parking area near the Sand Dune Arch. As with any trail in Arches National Park, long or short, you will want to be sure to bring plenty of water. With temperatures climbing above 100 degrees Fahrenheit in the summer, it is important to where sunscreen and stay hydrated.

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Sand Dune Arch
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Entrance into the Sand Dune Arch Area
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Skyline Arch Was Another Favorite
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Broken Arch
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View from Devils Garden Trail

In addition to all of the tourists that were enjoying the trails, we also saw several lizards during our hikes. They seem to be quite used to the crowds and didn’t run away as people gathered around to take their photo. Snakes are also common in the park, as it is a desert environment, but we did not see any during our hikes. You will definitely see your share of birds as well from hawks to ravens. People should be sure to stay on the trails and not climb on the arches in order to protect the beautiful scenery for future generations to enjoy.

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Lizard Standing on a Rock
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First View of Landscape Arch
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Another Arch Near Landscape Arch
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Lizard on the Trail
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Walking on Devils Garden Trail

We hiked the Devils Garden Trail on our second day in Moab, Utah, so we had learned to get out early in the day to avoid as much of the heat as possible. The entrance to the park is only seven miles from Moab, but there were long lines of cars waiting to enter the park that took as long as thirty minutes before getting through the gate. Once through the entrance, it will take about another thirty to forty minutes to drive to Devils Garden if you don’t stop at any of the many pull-offs along the way. With so many arches in the area, Devils Garden is definitely a highlight of any visit to Arches National Park. If you have enough time in the park, we would also recommend hiking the Delicate Arch Trail to see one of the most well known arches in the park.

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Beautiful Arch and Blue Skies
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More Rugged Scenery Along the Trail
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Surrounded by Rock Formations
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A Raven on Delicate Arch Trail
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Trees and Rocks in Arches National Park

 

Delicate Arch Trail in Arches National Park

One of the most popular trails in Arches National Park in Utah is the 1.5 mile trail (one way) that will give you an up-close experience with one of the parks most iconic arches, Delicate Arch. The trail is listed as moderate and, with the exposure to the sun, steep rock faces, and some narrow ledges towards the end, it is definitely not an easy trail. The views are definitely worth the effort as you gain a little over 600 feet in elevation with panoramic views in all directions. The highlight, of course, is Delicate Arch, which is the arch that is depicted on Utah’s license plate.

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Delicate Arch without Any Tourists
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Hikers Heading Up the Exposed Rock Face
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Mountains in the Distance

We hiked the trail starting at mid-morning and the temperatures were already starting to soar. It is very important that you take plenty of water, at least 1 liter per person, to help combat the heat and dehydration. We had both a Camelback with 3 liters of water as well as a power drink with electrolytes. As we reached the end of the trail and had the opportunity to see Delicate Arch, we were glad that we decided to do the trail, although we probably should have started a little earlier. People were lining up to get their pictures taken standing inside of the arch, but at least while we were there, we had opportunities to get photographs of the arch without anyone as they changed places with other tourists. We weren’t worried about having our photographs taken inside of the arch, so we opted for panoramic views and yes, we did take a selfie.

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Smiling Despite the Heat
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Panoramic Views
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Another Arch Seen in the Distance from the Delicate Arch Trail

The Delicate Arch Trail is certainly a worthwhile hike within Arches National Park. It is extremely popular, especially at dawn and dusk when photographers come in droves, but it is busy all day long. The parking lot can get very full, but we were fortunate enough to find a spot near the trailhead. It was the first of our hikes in the park and we certainly learned some lessons about getting on the trail as early as possible and stopping in whatever shade we could find to help ourselves cool off. Seeing Delicate Arch was definitely one of favorite memories of the park.

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A Raven Joining the Tourists
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Nearing the End of the Trail
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Rock Formations and a Clear Blue Sky

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Arches National Park in Utah

Located just outside of Moab in Utah is the stunningly beautiful Arches National Park. The geology of the park is quite amazing with many different multicolored bluffs, free standing rock formations, and of course natural arches. The name of Arches National Park is certainly well deserved as there are over 2,000 stone arches located within the park, but the other formations are equally impressive. Although it is possible to simply drive through the park and stop at the many pull-offs and parking areas to see some of the amazing sights, but if you get a chance to hike some of the many trails, it will give you an even better sense of the park.

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Landscape Arch was One of Our Favorites
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Almost Looks Like a Group of People
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The Famous Delicate Arch
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Rugged Scenery

The temperatures in the park can be quite extreme due to the very dry desert air. During our trip, the temperatures started out very moderate in the early mornings, but quickly soared to 100 degrees Fahrenheit as mid-day approached. Because of that, it is important to make sure that you have plenty of water with you when you decide to go hiking and it is also wise to have something with electrolytes to help replenish what your body loses during the day. There are several trails within the park, some of them easy, but many of them are considered moderate to hard, so be sure to wear appropriate clothing and shoes if you plan on hiking. We found even the moderate trails to be strenuous at times with plenty of exposure to the sun and terrain that varied from the faces of boulders to deep sand.

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Skyline Arch
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Balance Rock
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Getting a Sense of the Size at Windows
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Amazing Rock Formations

Needless to say, the geology of Arches National Park steals the show. It varies throughout the park and each different location within the park offers unique and fascinating views. Seeing how nature has carved out the stone from the forces of wind and water into something so beautiful is an amazing experience. It is also important to understand that those forces continue today, although the changes occur slowly, over time the park will be different in the future than it is right now.

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Another Balancing Rock
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Looking Through Pine Tree Arch
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Various Rock Formations
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Broken Arch, Which Isn’t Actually Broken

Many of the more spectacular arches have been given names such as Delicate Arch (the one depicted on the Utah license plate), Broken Arch, Landscape Arch, Skyline Arch, Double Arch, and many more. Each of them are unique and spectacular in their own ways, so just because you’ve seen one arch doesn’t mean that you’ve seen them all. Many people prefer to visit the park at sunrise, but even more at sunset as the scenery can be even more amazing. We chose to get into the park early in the day and try to be done with our hiking by early afternoon when the temperatures started to get unbearable.

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Sand Dune Arch
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Towering Overhead
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Yet Another Balancing Rock
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Natural Beauty Throughout the Park

It is possible to see the park in a single day, but we took two days as we really wanted to make sure that we saw everything that Arches National Park had to offer. Utah has several wonderful parks that feature amazing scenery, such as Zion, Bryce, and Canyonlands, but Arches National Park is certainly one of the most impressive. The type of beauty that is found in the park is something so special that photographs can never truly capture it completely, so we would highly recommend that you visit Arches National Park.

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So Many Interesting Pinnacle Rocks
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Weathered Rocks
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Smooth Cliff Faces
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Various States of Erosion