The Arches of Arches…. Arches National Park: Part 3

Photo of Double Arch at Arches national Park by Curt and Peggy Mekemson.

I can pretty well guarantee that you will see Double Arch on any trip to Arches National Park. It’s just off the road… and impressive.


“Wilderness is not a luxury but a necessity of the human spirit, and as vital to our lives as water and good bread. A civilization which destroys what little remains of the wild, the spare, the original, is cutting itself off from its origins and betraying the principle of civilization itself.” Edward Abby from his book about Arches NP, “Desert Solitaire.”


Arches is renowned for its arches, as it should be, given its name. They come in all shapes and sizes ranging from three feet across to 306 feet. I noted in my first post that there are some 2,000 of them at the park. Forces of erosion, including water, ice and wind, break out chunks of rocks from softer sandstone beneath harder layers above and eventually work through fins.  New arches are constantly being created while older ones fall.

Arch in progress at Arches NP

A new arch in the process of being born at Arches National Park.

Several arches are located along the road and are easily reached by short hikes. Others require longer hikes and more work. When Peggy and I were at Arches last time, we were rushing through on our way to our Grand Canyon raft trip. We could hardly begin to do the arches justice, but we did photograph three that I will share with you today: Delicate Arch, Skyline Arch, and Double Arch.

Delicate Arch, Arches National Park

While Peggy and I didn’t have time to visit Delicate Arch, we were able to snap its photo from a distance. It is the most famous arch in the park and possibly in the world.

Skyline Arch in Arches National Park

Skyline Arch is also easily seen from the road.

Skyline Arch and tree at Arches NP

Here it is with a tree to help set it off.

Skyline Arch close up at Arches NP

A close up of the arch.

Double Arch at Arches National Park. Photo by Curt and Peggy Mekemson.

People in the lower right hand corner provide perspective on the size of Double Arch.

Double Arches and green brush

Double Arch seen from a distance.

Double Arches up close, Arches NP

One of the arches of Double Arch up close.

Arch in Double Arch, Arches NP

And closer.

Curt Mekemson at Arches NP

I was up climbing around on the Double Arch to get photos when Peggy snapped my picture, which will serve as the last of this post.


NEXT POST:  We will explore the surrounding country, petroglyphs and settler history.







27 thoughts on “The Arches of Arches…. Arches National Park: Part 3

  1. Curt, you use polarizing filters? Nice job on the lighting! Great Basin National Park outside of Ely and Lehman caves, both in Eastern Nevada. Thanks for sharing

    • Nature does a pretty good job on her own in Arches with glorious colors late in the afternoon. I do some processing but always try to leave my photos close to what my eye saw. Peggy and I have been to Great Basin National Park a couple of times. Once it was still spring with lots of snow about. Quite beautiful. –Curt

      • Nice Job. With all the strife and grief we seem to swim in, it is nice to read positive things on your blogs.

      • These are tough times, Bradley, as tough as I have seen in my life. Nature has always provided an element of balance for me, an escape as well as a calling. Thank you. –Curt

  2. Hello Curt! I’m Silvia form Italy and I have a blog too, I was there in 2016 and what to say, really really impressive and unique. On of the best Park I visited in US. And watching your pictures it made me wanna to come back!

  3. Although it’s less dramatic, I really liked seeing the arch in the process of forming. Arches is one of the few Utah parks we have not seen, and my husband is rarin’ to go. I’m not a red rock or desert lover, but even I have to a admit these parks are pretty impressive!

  4. We really did hit Double Arch at the right time — late afternoon. Right when the ranger said we should be there. And we took lots of pictures rather than climb up the steep rocks. I guess you can enjoy Double Arch in a variety of ways. We also saw Delicate Arch from the same spot that you did. One man helped me twist onto my camera his long, heavy telephoto lens and oh, my. What a difference a lens makes! But Arches is all good — no matter how far or how high you hike. And no matter which path. Always something pretty to see.

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