Arches – Devil’s Garden Trail


Arches National Park has a lot to offer, especially arches in abundance.  This single trail passes five unique arches (Tunnel, Pine Tree, Partition, Navajo, & Double O).  We skipped two other possible arches due to time constraints.  It also allows you to explore on some less used primitive trails.  

Distance: 5.4 miles RT
Time: 3 hours
Start: Devil’s Garden Trailhead
Difficulty: Moderate
Elevation Gain: 667 ft

At the very end of the Main Park Rd and near Devil’s Garden Campground, there is a one way loop with a lot of parking spots for a very fun hike. I don’t see why the Devil should get credit for this one! It’s worth your time even if you don’t complete it.

The first arches you can hike out to are Tunnel Arch and Pine Tree Arch. This is a side trail that splits off the main trail but is pretty short to do. Our kids loved the nice warm sand and instantly decided to lay down in it and make sand angels (almost in the middle of the trail). Other hikers thought this was quite funny. Kids will be kids.

The next arch you come across is one of the most famous in the park, Landscape Arch, which is the largest arch in the world. You can’t get too close because chunks the size of cars have fallen from the arch. Even if you only make it here and you decide to turn around, you wont regret coming out on the hike.

Continue on the trail until you see the cutoff for Partition and Navajo Arch. These are two different out and back trails that lead to some fun and unique arches. Partition Arch has a good view out over the valley:

Partition Arch

Navajo Arch is almost like a tunnel that you can walk through.

Navajo Arch

There is a bit of a stretch before reach Double O Arch, but it is quite interesting and worth the trek.

Double O Arch
The lower O in Double O Arch

Due to time constraints and the fact that this was already a long hike for our kids, we skipped Dark Angel (out and back trailhead starts at Double O Arch) and Private Arch (out and back trailhead is further ahead on the primitive trail).. We did however, take the primitive trail back so that I could explore some new terrain. This trail was pretty fun with some amazing views, but the trail was also slightly hard to follow in some places.

Primitive Trail

The rocks and fins in the park and fun to explore as long as you have a GPS or good sense of direction. The trail takes you through some of these areas.

Arches - Devils Garden

There were plenty of bats flying overhead at dusk as we were returning to our vehicle. To teach my kids about sonar, I would throw one small peddle straight up in the air and watch as a nearby bat would swoop down at it thinking that it could be an edible bug. This is fascinating to watch, but probably something you shouldn’t do repeatedly.

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