Arches National Park is located five miles north of the town of Moab, Utah. To get to Devils Garden, drive 19 miles into the park to the end of the main road at the Devils Garden parking area. There are 150 parking spaces and during peak usage this parking lot fills up. Overflow parking is not allowed. The trailhead is at the end of the main road where it makes a small loop. Arriving early (before 9:00 a.m.) is the easiest method of eliminating the parking hassles.
0.25 miles from the trailhead you will encounter a spur trail to the right. This spur trail leads a short distance to Pine Tree Arch and Tunnel Arch. After checking out these arches return to the main trail.
0.9 miles from the trailhead and 0.1 mile before Landscape Arch you can see where the Primitive Trail returns to the main trail.
One mile from the trailhead you will encounter Landscape Arch. Landscape Arch is a must see feature of Arches National Park. Most hikers turn back after visiting Landscape Arch, which allows a more peaceful hike for the remainder of the trip.
After Landscape Arch the trail becomes more primitive and is well marked with cairns (stacks of stones). The route is easy to follow and passes next to Wall Arch. Avid hikers should really enjoy the hike from now on as it crosses slickrock and winds to new wonders.
1.20 miles from the trailhead you encounter a spur trail to the left, which takes you to Partition Arch and Navajo Arch. Navajo arch is well shaded and an excellent place for a break. After checking out these arches return to the main trail.
2 miles from the trailhead you arrive at Double O Arch, which is a large arch stacked above a small arch, very strange looking and difficult to photograph from the front side, but if you climb through the arch to the backside you can get some premium pictures. Most hikers turn around at this point and return the way they came.
Just beyond Double O Arch you reach a junction with a 0.4 mile long spur trail which leads to the dark sandstone monolith known as Dark Angel and the beginning of the Primitive Trail. The Primitive Trail is marked with a warning "Caution, Primitive Trail, Difficult Hiking". The trail is no harder than what you have already traveled. There is a short section of slickrock, which is very troublesome if there is snow on the ground, but comfortable in dry conditions.
The Primitive Trail begins the descent of Fin Canyon. 0.4 miles from the beginning of the Primitive Trail you will encounter a spur trail on the right, which is 0.2 miles long and leads to Private Arch.
The Primitive Trail is 2 miles long in length from its beginning at Double O Arch until it rejoins the main trail near Landscape Arch. This is a beautiful trail which is overlooked by many hikers who are scared away by the warning of "Caution, Primitive Trail, Difficult Hiking". If you made it to Double O Arch you should have no problems with the Primitive Trail.
Landscape Arch is in the Devils Garden section of Arches National Park, and is one of the world's greatest natural wonders. This arch vies with Kolob Arch in Zion National Park for the title of world's longest natural sandstone arch. Most observers agree that of the two arches, Landscape is the more spectacular.
It is hard to believe that a piece of rock like this can exist. In its thinnest section the arch is only 11 feet thick, yet it supports a span of rock approximately 300 feet long. This arch could collapse at any time. On September 1, 1991, a 73-foot slab of rock fell out from underneath the thinnest section of the span, reducing the thickness of the span from 16 feet to 11 feet. On June 5, 1995, a 47-foot mass of rock fell from the front of the thinnest section of the arch, followed by another 30-foot rock fall on June 21, 1995. The short loop trail that went directly underneath the arch has been closed because of government liability should more rock fall.
Length: 7.2 miles round trip including all spur trails.
Time: 4 to 5 hours round trip.
High Point: 5,500'
Skill Rating: Moderate, there is nothing difficult.
Season: Year Round, difficult with snow.
Water: 3 liters per person.
Difficulties: None. Very Minor Scrambling.
Circle Trip: Yes.
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