Looking for a low effort, high payoff hike in Arches Nat Park? Double Arch Trail in Arches National Park is it! Trust me, it’s so short it’s hard to even call it a hike and basically completely flat the entire way.
You are able to hike freely on and around Double Arch which is HUGE.
Double Arch Trail Details:
- Length: .6 mi (1 km) roundtrip
- Trail Type: Out and back
- Elevation gain: 30 ft or 10 m (basically flat the entire way)
- Difficulty: Easy
- Time: 15-30 minutes
- Kid Friendly: Yes! One of the best hikes in the park for kids.
Double Arch Trailhead
The Double Arch Trailhead is located 25 minutes (11.7 mi) from the Arches National Park visitors center. To get there you will head towards the Windows Parking Area and keep going around a the loop in the parking area until you get to the bottom. Park in the Double Arch Parking Area on your right (north).
Click here to see exact location on google maps.
I made the mistake of not realizing that Windows Hike and Double Arch Hike basically share a parking lot. Once I arrived at the Windows Parking area I had no idea I was supposed to keep driving around the loop until I got to the bottom.
My GPS was telling me I was there but I couldn’t find the trail sign anywhere. All I saw was a sign for the windows trail. I drove around a little bit more and then realized that the Double Arch trailhead is down at the bottom parking lot.
Long story short, if you want the closest parking to the trailhead try and get a spot in the bottom lot.
There are bathrooms at the upper and lower parking lots.
Tip: I highly recommend downloading google maps before going. Service in the park is very spotty.
Double Arch Trail – What to Expect
The Double Arch trail is very easy to follow and not technically difficult.
You will run into a lot of families on this trail as it is quite literally the perfect hike for kids.
Arriving at Double Arch
Once you arrive you will be amazed at how big the arches are! It is the third largest open Arch in the park.
Double Arch is the tallest Arch in the entire park.
Just look at how tiny the people look in the photo below. The scale is huge!
Tips for Visiting Double Arch
Climb under the Arch
This is one of the Arches that you can climb under and around so make sure to take advantage of it! I would recommend leaving at least 30 minutes to explore and hike around the Double Arch.
You are able to climb up and under the Arch so take advantage of it and explore all the viewpoints!
When is the Best time to visit?
This trail is open year round. My favorite time to visit Arches is in January because that is when there are the fewest visitors in the park.
If you want to avoid the extreme cold and heat go during spring or fall, but beware, spring (May) is the busiest time at Arches. Make sure you make a reservation before going! Otherwise you will be screwed. More on that in the section below.
This hike is one of the most popular hikes in the park. Do not expect to have the trail all to yourself matter what time of year you go.
If you want to avoid the crowds go in January. That is when Arches and Canyonlands sees the fewest amount of visitors. Moab is practically a ghost town during this time. Hotels will be super cheap as well.
Things to know about Arches Nat Park before going
I had no idea how busy Arches Nat Park was before I went. Arches is one of the busiest parks in all of Utah. So busy that recently they have implemented a reservation system in order to get into the park in the summer and early fall.
I had no idea about this before going but luckily I missed the cut off by a week. October 31st is the cut off for the off season. More on that below.
If you are planning to visit Arches between the months of April and October a reservation will be required to enter the park. You will need a Timed Entry Ticket from from Recreation.gov. One ticket per vehicle will be required.
Cost of park entry
It costs $30 per vehicle to enter the park. If you walk into the park it is $15. I don’t recommend this unless you are training for a marathon. The park is huge and requires a lot of driving.
There are some holidays where they do not require a fee to enter the park. Check here for details.
No dogs allowed. It’s a kid friendly but not a dog friendly park.
Other hikes and viewpoints nearby:
Balanced Rock (7 minute drive or 2.8 mi away)
The Windows Hike – shares a parking lot with Double Arch. Park in the top lot.