If you have been following along, we split our week long trip to Moab, UT into three parts.
Part 1 – Look out points, Faux Falls and our Moab Hummer Adventure
Part 2 – Arches National Park
Part 3 – Canyon Land National Park and Park City
We were really excited for our adventures at Arches National Park. Unfortunately, the first day we had went into the park, the wind along with the cold caught us Californians a little off guard.We of course stopped by the visitors center to gather the stamps for our National Park Passport first. Have you heard of this? We discovered it on our first trip to Yosemite with MadewithHAPPYGirl (MWHGirl). There is a passport you can purchase where you can collect a stamp at each National Park (like a country passport stamp) and you can purchase a sticker to go along with the stamp.
Part of me thinks the kids enjoyed climbing on the statues at the visitor center more than some of the hiking 🙂We set out on our adventure through the park. We stopped at a few look out points and realized pretty quickly the weather wasn’t in our favor that the first day. The winds were upwards of 30-50 miles per hour in certain parts and it was quite cold.Our first stop was Sand Dune Arch. This hike was described as flat terrain and only about a half mile round trip. Sounded perfect for the kids, and it really would have been had it not been for the wind. There were cool trails leading into the rocks and the land was flat all around it which the kids loved. It wasn’t super crowded (which might be because everyone is smarter than us), but we found the arch itself to be quite beautiful. We got inside the rock to see the arch and an older couple had set up their easels to paint the arch. He offered to take our picture, but as you can see in the bottom picture, the wind picked up in there and was causing a sand storm that was brutal on everyone’s eyes. That unfortunately was the only picture we got of all of us at that arch. If you’re headed there and its not a windy day, I highly recommend it. Quick flat hike, but quite beautiful.
Next up was Devil’s Garden Trail. With the kids still pretty little, we decided to stick to trails that were a mile or less. The hiking backpack was instrumental for the 2 year old. His little legs weren’t going to get us very far and so that allowed for more hiking and added bonus was that he was able to take cozy naps along the way. Devil’s Garden has a few different trails, we took the shorter trail which was about a half mile in to the gorgeous arch. There was a some hills in this hike, but the 5 year old was able to hike with no problem. This is one of the more popular trails, but you don’t feel like its too crowded or that you can’t get a picture. This was a great family trail.Definitely one of the more grand arches that you’re able to walk up to in less than a mile. The “Windows Section” of the park is a hike that has a few different pretty spectacular arches. Truth be told, we hit this at the end of the first day at Arches National Park. We were all pretty tired and cold (and sandy), but still enjoyed the view. The kids were able to hike the stairs to the main “Window” and we were all pretty wow’d at how massive it was. The other two arches we saw were also fairly easy to get to and both the 5 and 2 year olds were able to hike on their own.The last part of our adventure in Arches National Park was the hike to Delicate Arch. This was a little rough for us. Its about a mile and a half hike each way, so 3 miles round trip. MWHGirl was an absolute rock star and hiked the entire way. There were a few points were she wanted to give up but we held hands and were able to make it to the top. One thing to note is that it is uphill a lot of the way, so when you see the hiking guides say its fairly easy, its not THAT EASY. We got to the top and MWH Dad and were proud of our family’s accomplishment. Once at the top, we did not take the 2 year old out of the carrier. Its pretty steep and we just did not feel comfortable with him running around.It is definitely something you have to see in person to understand its full awesomeness. The arch stands some 80 feet tall and there is a giant crater right in front of it.If you’re planning a trip to Arches National Park with the family, I would definitely recommend a good half the day dedicated to just Delicate Arch. I would say 5 is about a good age to have them hike themselves up if they are willing and able. We definitely saw some families who had to turn around, but definitely worth it once you get up there!
We’d love to hear about your trip to Arches National Park and whether your littles were able to hike the entire way.
All in all, you can’t go wrong at Arches National Park. And with it located only about 10 minutes from downtown Moab, its a must when visiting. Looks for Part 3 coming soon where we’ll be showing you our adventures at Canyonlands National Park and Park City.