There’s no food service within the park, so you'll need to pack snacks, lunch, and plenty of water each day before you head into Arches. You’ll also need to plan ahead to get tickets to the daily Fiery Furnace walk with a ranger. It’s a highlight for those who are adventurous and in good shape, but during most of the year, you must reserve your spot in advance at www.recreation.gov. If you don’t have a reservation, you can check for spots at the visitor center (make that your very first stop). The one-day itinerary is based on what to do if you can't take the walk or what to do on a different day. On the day of your Fiery Furnace walk, you can fill in your spare time with a walk on the Park Avenue trail. And if you have a third day, take a rafting trip on the Colorado River, which runs along the park's boundary.
Arches in One Day
Start as early as sunrise for cool temperatures and some of the best natural light, and head out on the 3-mile round-trip hike on the Delicate Arch Trail. The route is strenuous but quite rewarding. Pause for a healthy snack before heading to Devils Garden, another great spot for morning photography, where you’ll also find the easy, primarily flat trail to Landscape Arch, the second of the park's two must-see arches. If you're accustomed to hiking, continue on to Double O, but be aware that this portion of the trail is strenuous. Along the way, picnic in the shade of a juniper or in a rock alcove. By the time you return you'll be ready to see the rest of the park by car, with some short strolls on easy paths.
In the mid- to late afternoon, drive to Balanced Rock for photos, then on to the Windows. Wander around on the easy gravel paths for more great photo ops. Depending on what time the sun is due to set, go into town for dinner before or after you drive out to Delicate Arch or the Fiery Furnace and watch the sun set the rocks on fire.