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Category: 2018

Fiery Furnace

Fiery Furnace

Arches National Park

It was our last full day in Arches National Park, and we wanted to go out with a bang. We decided to do the only day hike in the park that requires a permit. Fiery Furnace is mazelike due to its many tall sandstone fins. It’s a set route but not quite a trail. GPS doesn’t work well within the narrow canyons, and maps are useless here, too. It’s located deep inside the park, near the Devils Garden area. The…

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Delicate Arch Trail

Delicate Arch Trail

Arches National Park

When I think of Arches National Park, the iconic Delicate Arch immediately comes to mind. It’s the largest freestanding arch in the park. Images of it are everywhere – on tourism literature, Utah license plates, and more. And it was finally time for us to visit it. Frank Beckwith, the leader of a scientific expedition in the area between 1933–1934 is credited with naming the arch. And it is delicate. Some day Delicate Arch, formed by erosion of a sandstone…

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Windows Loop and Double Arch Trails

Windows Loop and Double Arch Trails

Arches National Park

It was going to be a busy day in Arches National Park. We decided to hike two trails, including Delicate Arch. But we started with the less strenuous Windows Section. The area boasts numerous arches, and a fairly short trail leads to North Window, South Window, and Turret Arch. Double Arch is also nearby – it’s unique in that it has two arches that share a central pillar. We decided to explore them all. The trails to the Windows and…

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Devils Garden and Primitive Loop Trail

Devils Garden and Primitive Loop Trail

Arches National Park

This is the big one – the longest maintained trail in Arches National Park. The one with the most arches. And the second-most crowded (beat only by Delicate Arch Trail). Devils Garden Trail is a full-day hike, and worth every minute. The featured arch on the hike is Landscape Arch, the longest in North America. There are also six other main arches, a large obelisk called Dark Angel, and a few other formations that aren’t as well advertised. The trail…

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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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Devils Garden Campground

Devils Garden Campground

Arches National Park

Once again it was spring break, and time to explore our national parks. This time, we were headed to Utah. Most of our time would be spent in Arches National Park, with a couple days in Canyonlands. Based on flight cost and arrival time, we decided to fly into Grand Junction, Colorado and drive almost two hours to Moab, Utah. We planned to spend our first two nights at Devils Garden Campground, the only developed campground in Arches National Park….

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Dark Hollow Falls and Rose River Loop Trail

Dark Hollow Falls and Rose River Loop Trail

Shenandoah National Park

Rose River in Shenandoah National Park has been on our to-do list for awhile. Several attempts in the past floundered due to laziness or something coming up at the last minute. We’d made it to Mathews Arm Campground for the weekend, so we took the opportunity to finally hike Rose River Loop. The hike is located off Skyline Drive in Shenandoah’s Central District, across from Big Meadows Campground. We decided to make a 5.1 mile loop that included Dark Hollow Falls.

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Mathews Arm Campground

Mathews Arm Campground

Shenandoah National Park

Over the years, we’ve been to Mathews Arm Campground many times. It’s the closest campground in Shenandoah National Park to our home in the DC suburbs. It had been about a year since we had camped there, so we wanted to stay there at least once before the weather cooled off. We considered the campground to be our home-away-from-home since we found it to be well-organized, quiet, and close to hiking trails.

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Backpacking Overall Run & Beecher Ridge Trails

Backpacking Overall Run & Beecher Ridge Trails

Shenandoah National Park

I had been wanting to check out Overall Run Falls in Shenandoah National Park for some time.  At 93 feet, Overall Run Falls is the highest waterfall in the park, but you don’t hear as much about it as other waterfalls like Dark Hollow Falls or White Oak Canyon.  So on a warm spring day, we went to see for ourselves.  We planned for a one-night backpacking trip to see the falls and make a lollipop loop with Overall Run and Heiskell Hollow Trail.  Our plans changed slightly during the hike, and we returned on Beecher Ridge Trail instead of Heiskell Hollow Trail, creating an 11.6 mi lollipop…

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