Crowded Arches

I was already upset with Arches National Park after our surprise in the morning led the boys and I out to Fisher Towers but when we arrive to the park later in the morning with Steph and Brielle and there is a line of cars out to the highway, my blood pressure rose dramatically!  I tried to keep a good attitude as we creeped toward the entrance until finally we were in.  We stopped at the visitor center to get information on Fiery Furnace tours…but, they are not doing tours yet.  Fine, we’ll just go to Delicate Arch then….LIKE EVERYONE ELSE.  The parking lot was a circus…cars just driving around and around waiting for a spot.  There was also a huge line at the bathrooms.  We finally get a spot, have a quick bite of lunch on a rock and then head off like just 5 more head of cattle in the heard towards this famous point in the park.

The weather was overcast and perfect temperature for hiking.  There were just a couple spits of rain and it was windy in a couple of spots but, for the most part, pretty much ideal.  When we rounded the last corner this famous arch dominated the view.  It stands tall, majestic and indeed quite delicate looking.  As well, it stands in a sea of tourons (a term we use in the tourist industry which is a mash up of tourist and moron)!  I actually felt pity for the sandstone sculpture and guilty that I was part of the masses.  I mourned the loss of wildness and ruggedness that this area has suffered.  At the same time, I am thankful for our national park system to preserve and protect these areas from some drywall mansion or mega-mart being built here.  And, I am also glad that people are getting out and enjoying nature even if it is a tamed and domesticated version of it.  Anyway, we snapped a few pictures of the arch all of which required post editing to remove all but our favorite tourons of the story!

After a quick stop at the Fiery Furnace overlook we headed to Sand Dune Arch.  This was a favorite of ours from last time.  It is just a 5 minute walk from the parking lot between some large fins of rock.  Filling the gap between the fins of rocks is soft red sand…what used to be part of these massive and imposing structures is now trampled on by mere human feet.  The kids loved playing in the sand and then exploring all the nooks and crannies in, over and around the rocks.  After the sun left the sand and began climbing the rock walls as it made its way toward sunset we decided to make our way back home.  It was a good day despite the crowds and here are some pictures to prove it.


Do I have to?


Hiking girls

Stop, rest, think

Rock waves

There it is

Dacen and Delicate Arch

The guys at the arch

Me and my hunny

Trying to get "the shot"

Hiker woman



Fiery Furnace overlook

Dacen by Fiery Furnace

"Ruh Roh!!"

Nature's sandbox

Tight spaces

Can she fit?

Barefoot climbing

Up high


"Hold it open Dacen"

In a crevice

Between a rock and a hard place

Sand Dune Arch

Family at Sand Dune Arch

View toward Devil's Garden


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