arches, canyonlands & dead horse in 1 day

Leah Fishman

While driving through Utah, I knew that I had to stop and see at least two Utah National Parks on the way. Arches & Canyonlands are a natural pair: located side-by-side, you can totally hit both in one long day. While a 12-hour itinerary means no long hikes, you can see most (if not all) of the major landmarks from your car or by trekking 10-20 minutes off road. Dead Horse is a bonus if you finish both parks before sunset! Stay in Moab two nights for easy access.

arches, canyonlands & dead horse in 1 day

By Leah Fishman
Updated · 94 views
While driving through Utah, I knew that I had to stop and see at least two Utah National Parks on the way. Arches & Canyonlands are a natural pair: located side-by-side, you can totally hit both in one long day. While a 12-hour itinerary means no long hikes, you can see most (if not all) of the major landmarks from your car or by trekking 10-20 minutes off road. Dead Horse is a bonus if you finish both parks before sunset! Stay in Moab two nights for easy access.
Viewing 11 places
  • Dead Horse Point State Park
    See & Do
    1
    • leah Stop #10: Last stop of the day. Sunset at either Dead Horse Point or Meander Overlook

         
  • Grand View Point Overlook
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    • leah Stop #9: Easy viewpoint from the parking lot. If time allows, hike the 1 mile trail to the Grand View Point Overlook.

         
  • Green River Overlook
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    1
    • leah Stop #8: 2 miles from the Mesa Arch carpark. A short, 2 minute walk.

         
  • Mesa Arch
    See & Do
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    • leah Stop #7: Hike Mesa Arch Loop (.5 miles, 20 minutes).

         
  • Shafer Trail Viewpoint
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    • leah Stop #6: Right next to the road. A quick walk from the car (5 minutes) is Shafer Canyon Overlook. Also passing on the way out, so can loop back for sunset.

         
  • Island in the Sky
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    • leah Stop #5: A 30 minute drive from Arches National Park and you're in Islands in the Sky, Canyonlands.

         
  • Park Ave Viewpoint
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    • leah Stop #4: Last looks at Arches before driving to Canyonlands.

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  • The Windows Section
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    • leah Stop #3: The Windows. View North & South Windows from the parking area, then take the short walk to Double Arch.

         
  • Devils Garden
    See & Do
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    • leah Stop #2 (option 2): 15 mins along Arches Scenic Road. Hike option: Landscape Arch Trail (1.6 mile out-and-back, 1 hour total). Includes views of Tunnel Arch and Pine Tree Arch.

         
  • Delicate Arch
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    • leah Stop #2 (option 1): 3 mile out and back to the iconic Delicate Arch (2.5 hours roundtrip)

         
  • Balanced Rock
    See & Do
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    • leah Stop #1: Get to the park before sunrise to beat the crowds. You can view this one from the car, or there's an easy .3 mile loop that loops around the rock (10-15 minutes including time for pics).