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Category: Day Hike

Sand Dune, Broken, and Tapestry Arches Loop Trail

Sand Dune, Broken, and Tapestry Arches Loop Trail

Arches National Park

One of the main reasons we wanted to stay in Devils Garden Campground in Arches National Park was its proximity to hiking trails. One hike, called Broken Arch Trail, goes directly through the campground. We decided to hike a 2.8 mile loop to see Broken Arch, Sand Dune Arch, and Tapestry Arch. Aside from the Sand Dune Arch portion (which has a side trail leading to the main road), this route isn’t too crowded. Broken Arch Trail By early afternoon,…

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Tower Arch Trail

Tower Arch Trail

Arches National Park

After getting set up at Devils Garden Campground and checking out the visitor center, we went on our first hike in Arches National Park. We chose Tower Arch Trail, in Klondike Bluffs, the northwest section of the park. The 2.5 mile trail is named after the titular Tower Arch at the end. Along the way is a well known rock formation called the Marching Men, which looks exactly like it sounds. Compared with most hikes in the park, this one…

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Riprap and Wildcat Ridge Loop Trail

Riprap and Wildcat Ridge Loop Trail

Shenandoah National Park

Surprisingly, this was our first hike in the southern section of Shenandoah National Park. Before this, the furthest south we had travelled in the park was Bearfence Mountain. Most of the well known hikes are in the central and northern districts. And while we consider Shenandoah our “home park,” driving there from Northern Virginia can take a while. We spent a weekend at Big Meadows Lodge, and planned to hike Riprap and Wildcat Ridge Loop Trail, one of the most…

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Rapidan Camp Loop Trail

Rapidan Camp Loop Trail

Shenandoah National Park

Spring is a great time to go for a hike and see wildflowers in Shenandoah National Park. This time, we decided on a hike to Rapidan Camp in the Central District. The camp was a summer getaway for President Herbert Hoover between 1929 and 1933. It is also important as it helped initiate the construction of Skyline Drive. In 1933, the Hoovers donated the land to Shenandoah National Park. It was later used as both a boy scout camp and…

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Garfield Peak Trail

Garfield Peak Trail

Crater Lake National Park

On our final day in Crater Lake National Park, we checked out of Crater Lake Lodge, and simply walked to our trail. Garfield Peak Trail begins just off of Rim Village Drive adjacent to the lodge, though we wouldn’t reach the trailhead sign for 0.2 miles. With easy access from the lake’s south rim, the trail is convenient and popular. Garfield Peak was named after James Rudolph Garfield, who was Secretary of the Interior when the park was established in…

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Watchman Peak Trail

Watchman Peak Trail

Crater Lake National Park

Visiting Crater Lake National Park in late July means dealing with snow. Yes, somewhat hard to believe, but it’s true. When we arrived in the park, some hikes were still closed due to snow. Luckily for us, a park ranger we met on our lake tour mentioned that Watchman Peak had opened two days ago! So that’s where we headed that afternoon. Watchman Peak Trail is a 1.7 mile out and back hike with views of Crater lake, including the…

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Cleetwood Cove Trail and Boat Tour

Cleetwood Cove Trail and Boat Tour

Crater Lake National Park

Planning and Disappointments One activity we wanted to do in Crater Lake National Park was to get out on Crater Lake itself. The park does tours of the lake, and also has shuttles to Wizard Island. The island is a 316-acre landmass within Crater Lake and has several hiking trails. Months before our visit, we reserved tickets for the boat tour, including the Wizard Island shuttle. Visitors can only get to the shoreline of Crater Lake via a steep 2.1…

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Mount Scott Trail

Mount Scott Trail

Crater Lake National Park

So far in Crater Lake National Park, we had hiked some lesser known trails like Boundary Springs. It was finally time to do some more “popular” hikes. Today we decided to hike Mount Scott, a 4.3 mile out and back trail located on the eastern side of the park. The trail ascends 1318 feet, and features views of Crater Lake and the surrounding mountains. Mount Scott is the highest point in Crater Lake National Park at 8929 feet and is…

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Boundary Springs Trail

Boundary Springs Trail

Crater Lake National Park

The average July rainfall in Crater Lake National Park is around one inch, the lowest of the year. So, it was just our luck that it was raining on our first few days in the park. We wanted to go backpacking in the northwestern section of the park (on Bald Crater Loop), but the rain and threat of thunderstorms put a stop to that. Instead, we decided on a 5.4 mile out-and-back dayhike to Boundary Springs. Boundary Springs Trail is…

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Stony Man Trail

Stony Man Trail

Shenandoah National Park

We don’t usually hike in the winter. It’s cold (obviously), and daylight is lacking. Ice and downed trees often close off Skyline Drive, so you can’t access most of Shenandoah National Park. We had been trying to hike for weeks in Shenandoah, but the central district had been closed. I’m not a fan of winter and was eager to put it behind me. Finally, with some warmer weekend weather, we found ourselves hiking Stony Man Trail. It was getting warmer…

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