Delicate Arch, Arches National Park

Arches National Park is one of the most famous national parks in America, with over 2,000 naturally occurring stone arches peppering the desert landscape. There are plenty of hikes and trails that avoid the crowds in Arches, but seeing Delicate Arch for yourself is worth it even if you’re surrounded by fellow hikers.

With nearly 50’ of vertical, open space and standing over 30’ wide, Delicate Arch is the tallest freestanding arch in the park. While there are a few viewpoints along the way, reaching the arch is a three-mile round trip with just under 500’ of elevation gain.

This hike is short and steady, and the trail is easy to follow. It’s worth the jaunt to see this incredible feature up close,  rather than from the viewpoints farther back. I hiked out here because if you’re in Arches, you kind of have to. Delicate Arch is a remarkable feature and seeing it up close was awe-inspiring, despite the crowds. There’s no drinking water at the trailhead, so be sure to bring water and sun protection if you’re hitting the trail during the hotter parts of the day.

About the author

Maggie Slepian

Maggie Slepian

Backpacker, trail runner, climber, and mountain biker

Maggie is an avid outdoor enthusiast based in Bozeman, Montana. When she's not in front of a computer writing and editing, she can be found backpacking, trail running, mountain biking, climbing, shooting archery, or trying to teach her cat how to walk on a leash.

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