Oh man, I can’t even describe how beautiful Arches National Park is! Actually, Utah, in general, is just magnificent! We stopped here on our two-week road trip and it was breathtaking. Down the road from it is Canyonlands National Park, which unfortunately we didn’t get a chance to stop at.
I assumed our day stop here would be uneventful; boy was I wrong! Apparently, the park is prone to flash flooding.
Upon arriving at the park we made our first stop at Park Avenue Viewpoint and Trailhead and that’s when I noticed the dark clouds. My first thought was, well this just sucks; so much for doing any kind of exploring photography! Then I saw it! The magnificent coloring in the rocks which were magnified against the dark sky!
Thankfully the rain shower didn’t last long and it was just light sprinkles when we made it to the next stop at La Sal Mountains Viewpoint.
While we were at the viewpoint, we noticed several awesome waterfalls in the distance just pouring off the rocks. Turns out it was run off from the short rain storm that just passed through. It made for a beautiful site.
We headed onto the Petrified Dunes Viewpoint as the rain shower started back up. It actually made for an awesome picture!
After the petrified sand dunes, we headed to view the Delicate Arch viewpoint. The rain had stopped and the sun was out. On the way to the viewpoint, we noticed a sign that said the road was prone to flooding. Good thing it wasn’t flooded from the rain!
After spending about an hour or so at the arch we decided to head on to our next stop, however, there was a problem. The road that was completely bone dry driving in was now flooded and there was no way out.
We, of course, watched cars attempt to cross. Not one of them actually got out to see how deep it was which was a stupid and dangerous move. We waited for about 30 minutes and still nothing had changed.
Thankfully my truck was made for situations like this (it is lifted with pretty aggressive tread and of course a 4×4). Of course, I also check the conditions to make sure it is something my truck can handle. I jumped out of the truck and slowly started making my way down the road and into the muddy water. The major portion was covered in water (not flowing) with a top layer of what I can only describe as sludge. I still had traction on my shoes and it was only about 2 inches deep. As I made my way through I cleared out tumbleweeds and any other obstacles that had washed on the road.
I finally made it to where the actual rushing water going over the road was. It was about 6 inches deep and not moving fast (people were actually standing in it when I got there). I looked to my left to see where it was rushing to. There was no creek or river, it just emptied out onto flat land.
By this time we had been stuck on the other side of the road for 2 hours (along with many other people) with no help in sight.
I told my husband my truck could make it for him to back up, get to a speed of about 20 mph, don’t let up and keep it steady. He looked at me like I was crazy. I forgot he’s not from Texas.
I somehow managed to talk him into it and he made it across with no issue. I crossed on foot and we were on our way. Some of the other 4×4 vehicles followed, unfortunately, all the cars and non 4×4 would be stuck there for a while.
We left to start our first hike.
We only hiked for about 1/4 mile; apparently, my husband was not in the hiking spirit after the flooded road fiasco!
Needless to say, we had an amazing time. I took hundreds of pictures (too many to post here) but did make a slideshow of my favorites! Enjoy!
If you are interested in purchased any of these pictures as artwork for your home, you can purchase them on my photography website.
Breathtaking and should be on everyone’s bucket list. In fact, it should be on there multiple times! We definitely plan to visit again and stay longer so we can explore more!
The entrance to Arches National Park is north of the town of Moab, Utah. From Moab, drive north on US 191 for five miles. From I-70 (Crescent Junction), drive south on US 191 for 22 miles.
Arches National Park Website
Hours from Fort Hood (for those in the Central Texas Area): 17 hours; 1023 miles!