Friday, February 9, 2018

Arches National Park: Navaho Arch

We'd hiked straight out to Double-O arch in case we didn't have enough time or energy to do the side trails with more minor arches along the way.  So on the way back, we detoured off the main route to take in these other arches.

Just some interesting landscape along the way ...

We loved this flying saucer formation:

This is the lower part of the fin that has the arch, eroding out from the bottom as they do:

And here we are:

These two are taken from inside the arch, it has kind of an open-topped cave inside of it:

There is a little courtyard between the fins behind the arch:

Next up, Partition Arch ...

Thursday, February 8, 2018

Arches National Park: Double-O Arch

The hike out to Double-O Arch was as amazing as the destination, so here are way too many pictures.  We left Landscape Arch and headed down the trail:

Here's where we come to our first fin that we hike up as part of the trail.  In places it was hard to tell whether we were supposed to hike on fins or between them, on this one we accidentally set off between them and then retraced when we saw a more savvy hiker saunter right up (it's the lower fin on the left):

Looking back at where we just came from:

This fin was the coolest one that we hiked along.  Drop-offs on both sides, but amazing views.  We don't know the guy ahead of us, but he gives perspective:

Looking back at Ed:

Somewhere down there is Black Arch, probably hidden in the shadows:

Coming to the end of the trail, the last part was tricky to find where we needed to go to get to the arch, but we figured it out eventually.  Some of the views as we were searching were pretty nice though, which is probably what distracted us from finding the trail more quickly!

Almost there, but I keep getting distracted:

Here we go!  That's me heading towards the lower of the "O"s, they are stacked one on top of the other

We climbed through the lower O and got this view of both Os from the other side, the smaller one is in the lower centre, it's dwarfed by the hugeness of the big O:

About to head back through the little O:

More arches coming up!

Monday, February 5, 2018

Arches National Park: Landscape Arch

On Dec. 4 we headed back into Arches National Park to hike trails and see arches in the Devil's Garden area of the park.

Of course, the drive in was spectacular, here are a couple of the views on the way up to the north end of the park:

This is "The Organ" again, but it looks different today in the brighter sunlight and different angle:

This is Skyline Arch as we drove past it, we'll go hike closer to it later on:

Pulling into the parking lot at the Devil's Garden trailhead:

The trail heads off between some fins:

Just another view off the side of the trail:

And here it is, Landscape Arch.  This one's days are likely numbered, some chunks fell out of it in the 1990's and made it the skinny ribbon of rock that it is now.  You can't hike underneath it since then since it will be falling at some point.

Next up, we continue our hike up the trail to Double O arch...

Sunday, February 4, 2018

Longbow Arch

Earlier in the day on Dec. 3 we had stopped at a short trail called Dinosaur Tracks.  It was so underwhelming that I am not even going to show you a single photo of it.  Really, it was that much of a letdown.  However, that trail is also the trailhead for the Longbow Arch trail.  We decided to come back and try that one later in the day if we had the time, and we did.

Here's looking back as we head up the trail, we get a view of the mountains on the other side of the Colorado River:

There are some petroglypths along the way:

Heading up the trail, there is a bit of a climb at first:

Looking back at Ed as he follows me up:

The back of this starter arch had some neat little mini-cairns that people had built inside the eroded holes:

More pics as we headed along the trail:

Coming up to the arch, it's at the upper right hand side of the photo:

On the way back, I found this little cactus living in a small pothole:

More dramatic landscape as we walked on the trail back.  You can see a jeep trail in both of the photos below.  Too bad it's overcast ...

... but wait!  Just as we approach the place where we descend back into the valley, the sun pokes out from behind the clouds.  We ran along this ridge to get a look at the mountains lit up in the late day golden light across the river:

It had been a windy day, and as we drove back into Moab there was dust blowing over the road:

Coming up from Dec. 4, more arches in the Devil's Garden sector of Arches National Park.