Located just (8 km) north of Moab is Arches National Park, which contains the world’s largest concentration of natural sandstone arches (around 2000!).

  1. Delicate Arch has become the unofficial symbol of Utah, it’s everywhere: Even on the state’s number plates.
John Wesley Wolfe, a Veteran of the Civil War, built the homestead known as Wolfe Ranch around 1898, seeking good fortune in the newly established state of Utah. It is located on the Salt Wash, at what is now the beginning of the Delicate Arch Trail.
Said trail winds into the valley and leads to the base of a steep sandstone hill also known as slickrock.
The steep sloped rock has no shade whatsoever and must be like a stovetop in summer. Glad it’s November already!
Lime-flavored rocks? No, this rock layer visible around Delicate Arch Viewpoint is the Brushy Basin Member of the Morrison Formation. The green color comes from reduced iron, produced in swampy or boggy conditions. You may know about iron deposits that have a rusty-red color—that’s the color you’ll see the most in Arches’ rock formations.
Frame arch and a very uncomfortably looking ledge that we need to walk.
But it gets even worse, the ravens are already circling us.
The “I was here” shot.
Salt Valley views.
The lean side of the arch. To the left there’s a sheer 100 m drop down after the sloped side I’m standing on.
Free standing. Such an artwork!
These girls have fun! Overheard them say they’d be back at sunrise. Sure beautiful!
Sitting on the edge of the bowl that opens up to the right. The whole place is uncomfortably sloped. But oh so scenic!
The whole place with the wide lense, the bowl area might be the next pothole arch in geological future.
Frame Arch framing delicately.
Same arch from the viewpoint trail. Would be just a km in air distance, but with a valley in between.
The little ants are actually people.
Here a bit further away with the wide angle lens.
The planes’ tilt is visible here.

2. Sand Dune Arch – much enjoyable short walk with an arch just around the corner.

Sand Dune Arch is named for its location in a sandy slot canyon between two fins. The sand here is particularly fine and pinkish-red in color.
There are footsteps until there’s no path anymore.
Laying completely in the shade of the sandstone fins, this place glows in different orange and pink tones.
A narrow path leads up the wall behind the arch and kids use it as slide.
Broken Arch in the distance.
Sandstone layers on a rock.
Dry vegetation in November.

3. Pine Tree Arch – A hidden one, but well worth the walk.

The view with the La Sal mountains on the horizon is breathtaking!
Pine trees, as promised ;)
Drama, baby!

4. Tunnel Arch – Been there twice, but in Autumn it seems late afternoon is best if you want to really see the “light on the end of the tunnel”.

Early afternoon with the sun sitting on top of the arch.
Checking the wildlife footprints in the area, no predators, just some deer, wild goats or proghorns around.
Late afternoon with tunnelview.
Very nice short walk.

5. Landscape Arch – measuring about 88 metres long from base to base, is one of the longest natural freestanding spans of rock in the world. Since 1991 large pieces of the formation have fallen, though the arch remains intact.

Such a long bridge o.O
Is there a weather coming from the east?

6. Partition Arch – Sandstone span along the Devils Garden trail pierced by large & small window-like holes.

Walking past Landscape Arch into the red fins.
Getting lost in Devils Garden.
Hiking up to the upper plateau arches.
Fear of heights is a blocker for this walk.
But if you can overcome it, it pays off.
Partition Arch, because there’s another tiny arch next to it.
But the view through the “big window” is just amazing.

7. Navajo Arch – Tunnel-like, ground-level arch in a thick sandstone fin, with a flat, shady area underneath.

Walking underneath the wall.
Navajo Arch is like an areaway to the dark space behind the fins it neighbours.
From further away inside the fins’ opening.

8. Balanced Rock – it’s located next to the park’s main road, at about 15 km from the park entrance.

From the parking it looks… nice, but to get an impression of size, do the loop walk.
The balanced, upper portion of the rock is as large as three school busses.
The Garden of Eden in the distance.
It is one of only a few prominent features clearly visible from the road. The raven agrees.

9. Windows – Also known as “The Spectacles”, these two arches stand side by side, though separated by some distance, cut from the same sandstone fin.

Easy 30 min round walk with lots of photo opportunities.
“The Windows” – North and South Window together. We thought it looked more like a giant face buried in the soil up to the nose.
Not easy to get a shot where just your favorite person is featuring.
Lone Needle with the La Sal Mountains.

10. Turret Arch – Most photographed right after the delicate one.

Turret Arch is the smallest of the three arches to see on the Windows Loop Trail, but it is part of a more intricate, castle-like rock formation that includes a spire (hence the name).

11. Double Arch – Like the boney remnants of an old cathedral.

Double Arch is an easy, relatively flat walk to two massive, soaring arches that are joined at one end.
It’s the tallest and second longest arch in the park.
She was here!

12. The three Sisters – no hike, no climb, just stare at the massive figures of these three stone women (the highest wall is 100 m).


Donations in form of Darbo Preiselbeer Kompott are greatly appreciated ;)