Arches National Park : le guide complet
Visiter Arches National Park: a park popular on road trips in the American West. These are its many natural rock arches (there would be more than 2000) which make the reputation and particularity of this park. For moviegoers, a scene from star wars was inspired by this park and Indiana Jones Movie First Scene and The Last Crusade was filmed in this park. Being a fan of these 2 films, before going there I knew that this park was going to inspire me!
HOW TO VISIT ARCHES NATIONAL PARK
Come by vehicle is essential, as there is no shuttle in Arches National Park. This park is part of the beautifull pass.
Visiting Arches is often combined with Canyonland (other national park) and to Horse Death (state park), nearby.
In Moabtown at the foot of the park, you will find everything: shops, restaurants, hotels, camping etc… This area is also very famous for quad and 4×4 enthusiasts..
WHEN TO VISIT ARCHES NATIONAL PARK
In winter it is very cold in Arches, and there are regularly freezing temperatures. Summer, on the other hand, is very hot, with average temperatures at 37°c. In the middle of summer, the park reminds you that it is very hot there and that ” heat kills “. There are signs every 200m reminding you to drink well. Especially that in the park, there is very little water: you will find some at Visitor center at the park entrance and Devil’s Garden. That’s all. So plan water reserves in the car.
WHERE TO STAY TO VISIT ARCHES NATIONAL PARK
There are no hotels in Arches National Park and only one campsite. devil’s garden campground which was closed for restoration when we were there (August 2017). On the other hand in Moab you will find everything: motels at all prices and campsites with or without reservation. Attentionsummer or weekends you have to arrive early (before late morning) to find a place in the campsites 1st come 1st served.
WHAT TO DO TO VISIT ARCHES NATIONAL PARK
You came in Arches to see Arches. The 35km panoramic road crossing the park will therefore lead you to the various viewpoints and the various best-known and most beautiful arches.
Here are the points not to be missed:
-Park avenue: at the very beginning of the road, it is the 1st stop. Here there are no arches, but huge cliffs with red-orange colors. From here, a small “park avenue” hike of 1.6km one way starts which will take you down (100m drop) in a Canyon to CourtHouse Towers Viewpoint.
-Courthouse towers Viewpoint: viewpoint that will allow you to see different rock formations
-Petrified dunes viewpoint: view of petrified sand dunes. Not extraordinary.
-Balanced Rock: as its name suggests: a large pebble that balances on a rock. Very well visible from the road, but if you want you can walk around the rock.
-The windows section: 1st place where you will see the famous Arches! You can take a short walk that will take you to north Windows and south windows then Turret Arches (formation composed of 2 Arches side by side).
But above all, do not miss Double Arch: one of the most spectacular formations in the park. In fact they are 2 arches connected to each other. Place in the park not to be missed! (Indiana Jones: c’est ici ;-p)
-Delicate Arch. Another iconic arch in the park. It is also the most photographed arch in the park. This one is really worth a look at sunrise and sunset: the colors illuminating the arch, making it an intense red-orange. To get your shot of Delicate Arch too, you have to walk 4.8km A / R on a path that climbs in the rocks. Be careful not to slip, and take plenty of water with you as it is hot and there is no shade.
-Broken Arch: the broken arch, but which is not broken! (just split). It’s nice, but it’s nothing extraordinary… and after a while, an arch remains an arch!
But from here you can also access a nice little canyon to see, and it’s a change from arches!
-Devil’s Garden: From here we had a superb 11.6 km ridewhich was Our favorite de Arches national park: « primitive trail at devils garden “. The beginning of the path will take you to Landscape Arch: the longest arch in the park (89m). A huge block broke off in 1991, which makes it really very thin. We even wonder how she manages to hold on! Then you will pass in front of “double o Arches”: 2 juxtaposed Arches forming 2 “O”. Then Then, the trek continues and you will still see many arches there but more people.
And yes, it is one of the places in the park that includes the greatest concentration of arches, but which is more difficult to access. This hike (classified as “difficult” ») is really nice. You orient yourself thanks to the cairns and you walk on a natural path, along and on sections of rock. That’s sublime and you are alone (rare thing in Arches)! Attention all the same not to slip, in some places you have to be sure-footed. Absolutely do not go there in case of rain. And bring lots of water because it’s hot there!
Arches National Park is a walkway to not to be missed on a road trip in the USA. It is beautiful and spectacular. But now, like many parks, Arches is a victim of its own success. It remains a real challenge to take a picture of Delicate Arche, at sunset, without any tourists on it! In total, we spent 2 half-days in Arches, and we found it perfect. So we did the viewpoints one afternoon with the sunset. And we spent the next morning hiking. So we had all the colors and also avoided the hottest temperatures.
Our USA west coast road trip: Here’s what we did!
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The article Arches National Park: The Complete Guide first appeared on Romlands.