Arches National Park, one of Southern Utah's Highlights

One of Utah's five national parks, Arches National Park is perhaps the most widely known. Located near Moab in Southeastern Utah, Arches National Park is 73,000 acres of red and orange strange, yet beautiful blending of sandstone arches, spires, balancing rocks and pinnacles. Many of the most popular and accessible features have been named, some as straightforward as "Balancing Rock" and some a little more creative, like "The Three Gossips". Scenic route maps are available at the visitor centers and a varied selection of formations can be seen from the car. From a short walk, long hike or a bike ride, every level of activity will be rewarded with spectacular views.

One of the most famous attractions in the park is "Delicate Arch". Photographs don't do this arch justice. Rounding the last corner of the trail to the vantage point, the actual dimensions of the arch are impressive; a 6-foot-tall man standing at the base looks like little more than an ant. Below the arch is a great, concave bowl so deep people bravely skirt the edges of the slick rock to see the arch up-close. As if planned, a short "hedge" of rocks surrounding the bowl offers a place to sit, rest and admire the view.

All around the park, the various reds, oranges and yellows of the rock contrasts beautifully to the blue sky. The textures of the landscape are as diverse as the rock shapes; smooth, jagged, scrub-brushed and pockmarked. Even travelers who are not fans of the desert will appreciate the unique sculptures of the landscape.

Below are directions to drive to the Arches National Park from Salt Lake City, Utah.  The driving distance is approximately 235 miles and is estimated to take 4 hours.

This article was published by utahhiker.

Living within minutes of the Wasatch Mountain Range has given me an opportunity to explore some of the finest trails in the Rocky Mountains. Thanks for letting me share some of my adventures with you.



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