We got up early again and drove to the end of the road in Arches National Park. The hike gives views of the majority of the arches in the park. The hike is a bit more than 7.8 miles total with rock scrambles, ridge walking, and an elevation gain and loss of over 1,100 feet. The views were fantastic even better than yesterday.
As we started down the easy portion of the trail, we walked down a couple of side trails that gave us views of several arches.
Prior to reaching the Landscape Arch, we turned off on to the primitive trail which will give us views of many more arches in the park.
We had no idea what we were getting ourselves into on this hike. It was much more challenging than we could have imagined. We should have gotten a clue from the name “Devils Garden Trail”. I bet that was supposed to be a hint this would not be easy. It is surprising that the park service even allows people to take the hike as it is laid out.
At first, it was just a flat walk on a sandy path. We were surrounded by views of mountains and vistas.
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The trees are old. I mean really old!. We were told that these pines grow very slowly and the larger ones can be over 2,000 years old.
There were tiny prints in the sand all around us. Most were kit fox, lizards, chipmunks or kangaroo rats.
We have reached the “fins”. They are huge thin walls of rock many 1,000s of feet long. Most are more than 100 feet wide at the bottom but may only be 3 feet wide at the top. The thinnest we found was only about 10 feet wide going up 100 feet or more to the top.
Soon the path started passing over solid rock. Many times sand made the climbs more treacherous.
We just came up from down there. It helps that others were hiking the path to give a reference for size.
All of a sudden, we had company on the hike.
The scale is amazing. Everything is HUGE!
More Living Soil.
And there were arches including “private arch” where we had lunch. We almost always have interesting views for lunch.
I climbed up a bit higher for a different view.
Little did we know but that will be us in an hour.
On with the hike.
The double O arches were interesting.
Time to walk up a fin. Yep, it is pretty scary. Notice the smooth surface on the fin, that is how you know it is the trail.
But we got a great view of double O.
More climbing and great views.
Another Arch or at least the sign says so.
More fin walking.
We seem to have an angel watching over us.
Perspective arch was one of our favorite.
The walls on our hike to Navajo arch were wild looking.
Time to walk down or slide on our butts to get down the fin. Many times we put cameras away in the packs so we had hands free to find hand holds climbing up or down.
That was wild. This is the scariest hike we have ever done.
It did give us a different “perspective” of the Perspective arch.
Finally we stopped at Landscape arch. It is huge.
Sorry I got distracted.
We did find a few flowers.
Almost back to the parking lot.
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