Arches – Delicate Arch Trail


Arches National Park has a lot to offer, especially arches in abundance.  This busy trail is mostly on hard rock surfaces and reaches the famous Delicate Arch which you see on many Utah license plates. If you aren’t able to do this hike, there is a shorter hike to a lookout point further up the road. There are several edges as you get close to the arch, watch your kids and make sure they are safe.

Distance: 3.5 miles RT
Time: 2-3 hours
Start: Parking lot on Delicate Arch Rd (a side road off Main Park Rd)
Difficulty: Moderate
Elevation Gain: 709 ft

There are many angles to take a picture of Delicate Arch so explore a little and see what you like.

My oldest son and I had to do a jumping picture inside the arch.

As we started heading back down, dark clouds rolled in and it started to rain and hail on us.

The precipitation caused waterfalls to start appearing on random rock edges around us, which is fun to see but a little crazy. Since there is so much rock, most of the water isn’t absorbed but simply is pulled by gravity to the lowest elevations. Luckily no part of the trail is in a deep basin or slot canyon, so we didn’t have to worry too much about the water.

We weren’t super prepared, but we had some jackets, ponchos, and we tried to hide under a rock at one point. I thought it was all quite fun and added to the experience. My sweet and tender daughter thought it was too much and broke down in tears.

Hiding from the storm

The park ranger arrived to close off a flooded section of the road.

Road closed due to flooding

I think this hike is one of the must-do hikes while you are in the park. It’s one of the more crowed ones, and you are in the hot sun most of the way, so I advice you arrive early and pack a lot of water.

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