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Friday, March 11, 2011

Arches National Park

I had visited Arches National Park back when it was just a National Monument, many years ago, and had loved it. I was anxious to share it with my hubby when we took our western vacation in 2009.

It was early afternoon when we entered the national park. As I had hoped, Doug was in awe over the magnificent and unique rock formations that were everywhere we looked. It was hard to know where to point the camera. 

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Looking down at the Visitor Center and the road into the National Park
We drove the 18-mile scenic drive through the park, stopping at nearly every scenic viewing area and walking to the overlook. Most of those were very short walks, but a few were longer.

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Balanced Rock
The temperature was in the upper eighties, with a mighty hot sun beating down on us; so, in spite of being approximately 5,000 feet above sea level, it was HOT! But we had a great time anyway. We slathered on the sun screen and wore our straw hats and got by all right.

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Turret Arch
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North and South Windows
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Double Arch
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Delicate Arch
The walk to the base of Delicate Arch would have been a three-mile round trip. We would have loved to do it, but we hadn't planned for it. So the above photo was made possible by a zoom lens.

On our way to see Landscape Arch, a round trip of 1.6 miles, we got caught in a surprise rain shower. We were carrying the digital camera and the camcorder and hadn't brought their cases with us. So we were trying very hard to keep them dry, but we kept walking. The rain didn't last long and it never did become a downpour. The cameras survived all right, but we won't do that again.

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Landscape Arch
Landscape Arch is considered to be the second longest natural arch in the world, measuring more than 290 feet. Since 1991, three slabs of sandstone have fallen from the thinnest section of Landscape Arch, prompting the Park Service to close the trail that once passed beneath it.

It was 8 PM by the time we left the Park. We returned to Moab and had supper at a fast-food restaurant. Then we drove around town a little. The stores were mostly still open, and the restaurants and bars appeared to be hopping. We parked on the street and got out and joined the crowds for a little while, browsing in a few shops, before calling it a day and heading back to the Apache Motel.

13 comments:

  1. Love these! Although I think that "north and south windows" should be renamed -- eye glasses. Just in case someone asks you what I think. :)

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  2. What a great trip. I took a second look on Delicate Arch after you said it was zoomed in. I had completely missed those little dots that are people. Wow! Must be HUGE!

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  3. The 3rd shot is amazing. What a beautiful area.

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  4. Incredible photo's, an amazing place to visit :o)

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  5. Sandra - Ha, ha. I think you're right about renaming those arches to "eyeglasses." It probably isn't going to happen, but it's a clever suggestion.
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    Elizabeth - It IS hard to get a perspective on Delicate Arch from a distance. I was glad those people were there to add some dimension to the photo.
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    Thanks, Steve. That image is one of my favorites, too.
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    Thank you, Deborah. It's a pretty amazing world we live in, isn't it? So much to see, so little time. :)

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  6. Hi Linda, George and I are going there this summer (June). We're headed west for 3 weeks and the Arches is one of the places we are going to visit. Love your pictures and cannot wait to see it in person..

    I went back and read your other recent posts that I missed while we were gone this week... Your pictures are fabulous..

    Hugs,
    Betsy

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  7. Betsy - I'll be anxiously awaiting your photographs of this amazing place and the other places you will be visiting. I know you'll love it!

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  8. C - It's a beautiful place. I hope you'll be able to check it off your bucket list soon. :) Thanks for stopping by.

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  9. Oh what a beautiful place. I love that balanced rock and of course, Sandra's eyeglasses. ;)

    Landscape arch does look precarious. I hope it stays intact. Fallen arches are not much fun. ;)

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  10. Hilary - "Fallen arches"...Tee hee! You've got one for every occasion, don't you? :)

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  11. Wow, I'm going to have to show these amazing pics to my hubby! Now if only I could talk him into taking me there!!!
    Thanks for visiting our blog--hope you'll visit again!
    "V"

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  12. V - If your hubby is a fan of John Wayne westerns, I think he'd love this place. You can just imagine cowboys and Indians hiding behind every rock. The scenery is right out of some of your favorite western movies.

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