Hiking at Arches is very pleasant. If you you are an avid hiker, these walks are quite easy and very short. We had been living in the desert for about six weeks and we needed to wear long light colored clothing to protect our skin. My wife joked about wearing "our uniforms" and I know she was not thrilled about wearing not only the exact thing I was wearing but wearing a long loose white t-shirt and long baggy pants which were not really flattering. She was really annoyed when we did the Delicate Arch hike and many girls were dressed for a dinner date. We did the hike the next night again as we had the extra day and I'd spent the first night mostly taking photos, not really spending so much time with my wife. We'd had showers that day and she decided to wear more feminine attire the second time out. She did look great and I did spend the whole time right by her side.
Equipment: Proper hiking boots with good ankle support should never be put aside for fashion purposes and besides they look great even with sexy shorts. In the desert, it is best to hike with long sleeve shirts and pants but sometimes if the hike is not so long, it is late in the day, and it is a bit of a social gathering, one can certainly forgo the "uniform" for something a little fashionable. ;)
While climbers do not need a permit, they do need to consult a Ranger before climbing. Most named features are off limits. The most popular places to climb are in Park Avenue. As usual, you better have good equipment and you better know what the hell you're doing. I personally think climbers are nuts, but they are fun to watch dangling from ropes!
Mountainbikers do only have a limited amount of trails in the park. But around the park, around Moab are so many trails to bike, so there is no real need to MTB the park.
Equipment: As Moab is world famous for excellent slickrock biking, you better go biking outside of the park.
If you can't bring your own bike, you can rent one in the countless shops in Moab.
Hiking is one of the main draws in Arches National Park. They offer a variety of marked hiking trails ranging from easy to challenging. Although the park is relatively small in comparison to some of the other National parks in the United States, it’s not feasible to hike it all in one day. If you have a limited amount of time to explore the park I advise driving through and hiking a few of the easy or moderate trails along the way. If you have a couple days hike to Delicate Arch! If you only have a day the hike to the Delicate Arch Viewpoint will suffice.
0.5 km/15 to 30 minutes
2 km/30 to 60 minutes
Delicate Arch Viewpoint
100 yards/10 to 15 minutes
Desert Nature Trail
0.2 mile/15 to 30 minutes
0.5 mile/15 to 30 minutes
2 miles/30 to 60 minutes
Sand Dune Arch
0.4 mile/15 to 30 minutes
0.4 mile/10 to 20 minutes
1 mile/30 to 60 minutes
2 miles/30 to 60 minutes
3.4 miles/2 to 3 hours
3 miles/2 to 3 hours
Devils Garden Primitive Loop
11.5 km/3 to 5 hours
Double O Arch
4 miles/2 to 3 hours
All trails in the Fiery Furnace are unmarked and challenging. If you are unfamiliar with the terrain it is easy to get lost. All hikers wanting to explore the Fiery Furnace must first obtain a pass at the visitors center and watch a video. It is strongly recommended to take a guided hike through the Fiery Furnace (sign up at the visitors center) your first time.
Equipment: A good pair of shoes, sunscreen and LOTS of water!
So many to choose from. We had limited time so we chose the Moab Jeep Rim Trail for it's easy chairlift access and novice to intermediate level riding. Riding slickrock for the first time is odd. Traction is odd. The landscape is odd. Everything here is odd.
The trail was fun for its rollercoaster like terrain. There were just enough technical sections to keep things busy but not too hard. The scenery never stops with views of Moab, the La Salle Mountains, the Colorado River, and even Arches Park across the way. A good time.
Equipment: Just don't forget sunscreen!