Arches National Park is one of the Mighty Five in Utah. This unique park is full of its name. Arches in all shapes and sizes.
Name: Arches National Park♦ Size: 76,679 acres ♦ Established: November 12, 1972 ♦ President: President Richard Nixon ♦ Fact: You cannot climb on any Arch. Period.
While a lot of the Arches in Arches National Park can be driven to and seen within a short walk, some you have to hike to. Hiking in Arches National Park is a treat because there are views with every step.
We decided to hike to Double O Arch because of all the options that come with it.
Hiking in Arches National Park to Double O Arch
Miles: 4.75 ♦ Elevation Gain: 672′ ♦ Trail Type: Out and Back ♦ Trail: Easy to Moderate (Only because of bouldering and not being good for any level)
This Hike in Arches National Park is a dream. Not just one, two or three amazing arches, but 5 arches to search out. This hike starts at a large parking lot that has enough room for RVs, just get there early if you want to get an RV spot as cars will take them up quickly.
The trail starts out flat and along a manicured gravel path.
At around .9 miles, you reach the first Arch of the hike. Landscape Arch has a span of 290 feet, which makes it the longest arch in the park.
This is where the sand trail begins and rock climbing sections start. Good hiking shoes for this will be good to have but not required.
The trail markings are many, so don’t worry about getting lost or missing out on an arch.
Shortly after Landscape Arch at around 1.25 miles into the hike, you come to the split to view Navajo Arch and Partition Arch. This side trip is well worth it. Navajo Arch was my absolute favorite!
When you get back to the main trail from detouring to Navajo Arch, you can also do another very short detour to Black Arch.
After these detours, continue on towards Double O Arch. It’s amazing to think that the seas flowed through here at one point and once evaporated, created a salt bed that is responsible for the creation of these rock formations. Water then washed away and formed many of these as we see them today.
If you do have a fear of heights, take caution here. The walkway is wide enough to make this an easy stroll, but look to the left to help get through.
Once you are done with this part you have a small jump to sand and then you are are within a tenth of a mile to Double O Arch.
After you take some pictures and have a snack you have a couple options of hikes back. You can go back the way you came from and may see Arches you missed or revisit your favorites, or take the primitive trail back. We did not do this but it adds a few more miles to the hike. Let us know if you did the primitive trail!
Please respect the signs through the park or any trail. Human footsteps, oils from our hands and climbing can destroy these natural formations and earth.
When you come to a single track trail, remember whomever is climbing up has the right away, or whomever has the safest place to step aside should. Just be mindful and respectful that we ALL use this trail.
Lastly, PACK OUT what you PACK IN. Stuff those granola wrappers safely in your packs or pockets. Orange peels are not something that should be thrown on the ground. Just because they are biodegradable, doesn’t mean they belong where you toss them. They are not natural to that area or to the animals.
JUST BE A RESPECTFUL HUMAN BEING.
Last minute questions Answered for Arches National Park
Dog Friendly: No. Leave Fido at home or in the car. They are not allowed anywhere on trails.
Family Friendly: Yes
National Park Fee: America the Beautiful or day pass
Permit: Not needed for major attractions but other activities and back country are needed.
Best Time: All year, just depends on what your desires are.
Other Uses: biking, camping, backpacking, canyoneering and rock climbing
Access: All year
Services: None except vault toilets at some trailheads.
Check out their website for contact or more detailed information: https://www.nps.gov/arch/index.htm
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