delicate arch awesome view

Here’s why you should visit Arches National Park

Utah really does a good job at being beautiful. Other than Zion National Park, it’s home to Arches National Park. And Arches National Park is home to the highest concentration of natural sandstone arches in the WORLD.

It’s hard to fathom how these babies are formed. Basically, over millions of years, erosion causes the softer rock in a formation to gradually wear away from underneath the ridge. Most of these arches have been around for ages.

Delicate Arch might be the most famous of the arches. It’s bit of an anomaly – a giant bright-red arch set against the snow-capped La Sal Mountains in the distance. The hike up here is pretty leisurely, although I was exhausted and so the steady incline felt almost worse that Angel’s Landing. It’s about 5 kilometres round-trip from the parking lot.

I like Delicate Arch’s big reveal. First you scramble up some slickrock with only cairns to guide the way, and then you walk with trepidation along a very narrow ledge against a sheer rock wall…

the trail to Delicate Arch

…and THEN you round a corner…and voila!

Delicate Arch, Utah

My Trek America crew and I brought a picnic with us, and watched the sunset. It was one of the highlights of my trip, even if we shared it with dozens of other people. There were cupcakes.

Picnic at Delicate Arch

Double Arches is another big draw, and was featured in the movie “Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade.” There’s not much of a hike here – hardly anything, really. But it’s a pretty spectacular feature, because it’s literally TWO arches in one…as the name suggests.

Double Arch, Utah

No surprises there.

Not far off is Balanced Rock. Gee, the Mormons were creative with their names.

Balancing Rock, Utah

The entire pinnacle is 128 feet, but the massive balanced rock is 55 feet from its base. It’s pretty impressive, and also pretty phallic.

We didn’t get to do everything in Arches National Park, and missed a few things like Landscape Arch, the longest natural arch in the world. But we eventually ran out of time and it was COLD in that park. I guess I just assume that everywhere outside of Canada is warm, especially south of Canada. How wrong I was.
Arches National Park

More epic landscape in Arches National Park.
 

Moab is the town located next to Arches National Park, and is a ridiculously adorable little hippie town. I LOVE all national parks towns…just like Jasper and Banff. There’s always such a diverse and eclectic bunch of people who come here.

 

funky motorcycle in moab

Who drives this thing?
wake and bake, moab

Good news: Coffee is still legal in Utah!
And sure there’s not a great deal of partying going on in a Mormon state, but hey, there IS beer. Polygamy Porter, to be exact.

polygamy porter

Betcha can’t have just one.
Oh to be back in the desert. Have you been to Arches National Park?

  • June 16 2015
    Lauren @BonVoyageLauren

    You had me at cupcakes. But seriously, this place looks AMAZING. I really need to explore more of my own country. Thanks for sharing, Candice!

    Happy travels :)

    • June 20 2015

      Hahaha. Right?! I definitely want to see more of the US now. I don’t know why I was never all that interested in it before, truthfully.

  • June 16 2015
    Pauline Susanto

    “I guess I just assume that everywhere outside of Canada is warm, especially south of Canada. How wrong I was.” I also think this way and froze my butt off when I went to San Diego only with shirts, shorts, and one flimsy cardigan! HAH! On a more related note, I’ve been wanting to go to Utah for so long now! Keep the Utah posts coming!

    • June 20 2015

      RIGHT?! I ended up buying fleeces and wool socks because it was so damned cold. And I already have so much of that back home in Canada, hahaha. Lots more of Utah to come! Thanks!

  • June 16 2015
    Megan

    “I guess I just assume that everywhere outside of Canada is warm, especially south of Canada. How wrong I was.” Yep, I’m guilty of that one. Now I bring coats EVERYWHERE!

    These are gorgeous arches. It would be very cool to visit one day to see the size of them in real life.

    • June 20 2015

      Hahaha I did the same in Greece last year…you’d think I’d learn. NOPE.

  • June 18 2015
    Ivy Kriste

    Its really cool

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