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Arches National Park - Utah USA

Moab camping

sunny 101 °F
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It was hot !
Like it only got down to 80 at night. And the clear sky allowed the sun to blaze during the day for 100+ degree days.
However that definitely added to the environment. The other worldly landscape that is Arches and Canyonlands national parks in eastern Utah (and a bit of the Colorado National Monument in western Colorado) is what I image a remote desolate trip to Mars would be like.

We took the 4Runner way off road to find a campsite by a dry river bed but with some large cottonwood trees to provide some shade and cover. Through the extended weekend, we also took the 4Runner on some rocky back roads to explore the challenging driving conditions that make the Moab area such a destination for off roading enthusiasts. Even taking "easier" paths with my limited off roading experience, we still got to experience driving on narrow ledges with hundreds of feet of drop off just past the tires, and some slick rock chunks that couldn't even be considered a road. That absolutely needed 4WD low speed and even got a tire off the ground for some 3-wheel driving.

The first day in the park was spent near the entrance. There is basically one main road in the park that goes out and comes back through the entrance. The closest hikes are for park avenue, Lasal mountain overlook, and courthouse towers view. A little further and about half way along the main park road is one of the most popular stops. It includes Balanced Rock and then two shorter hiking paths (less than a mile). One goes to Double Arch and one loops around the North and South windows arches. To complete the day, we also went to the next stop to go on a hike (about 2 miles) to see the well known and photographed Delicate Arch. After an afternoon nap in the heat, we also headed back into the park to catch the sunset from different viewpoints and behind different rock formations.

The second day was completely spent at the farthest point of the park. There you can start a long hike for the Devils Garden trail. It's about 10 miles for the full experience and provides well over a dozen arches and unique rock landscapes. Near there is where the only main campground is within the park (there are a couple back country tent sites) and that provides access to a few other small hikes to additional arches.

Overall, this is one of the most unique national parks in the world with an environment unlike anything you will normally see. Highly recommended.


  • Devil's Garden trail
  • Delicate Arch
  • Double Arch
  • the Windows

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Posted by MurkTravels 09:12 Archived in USA Tagged landscapes nature mountain utah usa nationalparks 2020

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