Arches National Park preserves over 2,000 natural stone arches, etched from Southern Utah's red sandstone, one of the largest concentrations of arches in the world. A rugged terrain of cliffs, pinnacles and washes harbors a scattering of sagebrush, junipers and other desert plants, often growing from cracks in the bedrock. The Colorado River borders the park on the southeast, having cut a deep gorge through the sandstone. Cliff-lined tributary canyons branch off of it, into the park. The sun typically beats down brilliantly, relieved in part by a breeze on the higher ridges.
The most famous arches include Delicate Arch and Landscape Arch. No stone arch is probably more famous than Delicate Arch, and it's unique shape has become an icon worldwide. Landscape Arch spans 306 feet with a thin ribbon of rock. In 1991 a slab of rock 60 feet long, 11 feet wide and 4 feet thick fell from its underside - leaving an even thinner ribbon high in the air.
Arches became a national Park on November 12, 1971, and it covers 76,353 acres. In 2003, it was visited by 755,987 people. Canyonlands National Park is just a couple hours away, and for hundreds of miles in most directions lies southern Utah's fascinating wonderland of rock formations, cliffs and mountains.
Arches National Park is accessed from U.S. Highway 191, a short distance north of Moab. The entrance road makes a dramatic climb up a cliff-face to access the highland where the major features are found.