Arches National Park - Moab

icsopris

Is it Friday yet?
Sep 28, 2011
185
We spent 4 days camping at the Arches National Park Campground April 18 - 21, 2013. You need to make reservations at http://www.recreation.gov website up to 6 months in advance. Book early as sites get taken, especially weekends in March, April, May, Sept, and Oct. (Too hot in the summer!)

Here is a good shot of the lower end of the campground sites 50 - 25(?)

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We got site # 4, at the entrance, which was better suited for tents, but it's all that was available so we snagged it. You can see it is a pull over site, right on the main road. There is not much traffic but vehicles are passing 2 feet by your camper. There was a nice picnic table and fire ring down off the road and protected from view and other sites. All sites are private, many are back in and some are real pull outs. (IMO sites 12 and 19, both pullouts, offered nice views and privacy.)

We were across the street from the bathroom which had running cold water, flush toilets and was very clean. There were campground hosts that buzzed around on a golf cart and were very nice and accommodating.

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We did some great hikes and saw lots of Arches.

Delicate Arch taken from the lower viewpoint. We could not find a place to park when we had the camper in tow because it's very crowded here. See the upper left arch, amazing!

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We did the 7 mile "Primitive Trail" hike that was less traveled and amazing canyon hiking to see Landscape Arch as well as 4 more! Took us about 5 hours to do this entire loop hitting all side hikes to see all the arches. Pack a lunch and water!

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The area with the Windows and Double Arch was amazing, a sight to behold!

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The campground has 50 individual sites which are $20 per night and will accommodate up to ten people. All these sites may be reserved for nights between March 1st and October 31st. There is no electricity or water hookups. Our solar panel got lots of sun here and kept us charged. Water is available and can fill a jug each day. Each night there were campfire talks led by a ranger and were very interesting.

This was a great experience to see the amazing landscape. However, don't expect to "get away" here as the campground is normally full and hiking trails / view points have lots of folks. A great trip and got lots of great photos. We had good weather, highs in the 60's and even had rain one morning which was incredible to see the waterfall run offs.
 

bburgcamper

16 weekends a year camping just isn't enough.
Jun 8, 2008
999
I had the good fortune to spend 10 day camping the in the SW many years ago (1987). We hit Arches, Canyonland, Bryce Canyon, Grand Canyon, Painted Desert and a few other spots. We camped (tents and a Ford LTD...think poor college kid budget) at Dead Horse Point State Park in Utah and wandered out from there. I want to get back out there sooner that later.
 

kitphantom

Super Active Member
Platinum Supporting Member
Dec 26, 2009
13,758
Albuquerque, NM
This is one of the areas we keep returning to in UT. We have a couple of favorite sites in Arches, but I'll be in a different one next week. By the time I realized I could get away the first week in May, our favorite sites were taken.
Yes, it isn't the most remote-feeling campground, but being able to walk from it to Devil's Garden, etc. is great.

ETA:
We try to be a bit removed from the group sites, but we've encountered some groups that were as quiet as single sites - and single sites that were horrible.
(One site we like was the one where we had a micro-burst appear, and shred our older (that is, well exposed to SW sun) tent fly to pieces, turn the whole thing turtle and rip a few very substantial table-canopy stakes our of the ground. We had to buy another tent for the second week of that trip. Several of the spring-bar tents common in Utah were untouched by the micro-burst.)
 

NJGuy

Super Active Member
Apr 20, 2010
2,353
We spent 3 nights there a few years ago. Your review is spot on. Glad we did it once. However, there are 2 very large group sites. One school group was wild and relatively unsupervised. The other group from Aspen CO was a delight.
 

Fundy

Member
Mar 3, 2013
30
RE: Arches National Park Campground

We have a trip planned for September. I understand that the National Parks in Utah don't generally have power. I have a CPAP that I must use at night. Are there any recommended Arches parks with power hook-ups? Water and sewer not important, after all it is a pop-up, right? Thanks!
 

NJGuy

Super Active Member
Apr 20, 2010
2,353
Dead Horse Point SP has electric hookups but is fully booked in Sept. Otherwise, plenty of private RV parks in town.
 

kitphantom

Super Active Member
Platinum Supporting Member
Dec 26, 2009
13,758
Albuquerque, NM
There are several pvt. campgrounds in Moab. If you want to be in the area, but not necessarily in Moab itself, Green River SP has been adding electricity to site. There is also a KOA and I think a couple of other campgrounds there.
 

MileHigh

Active Member
Jul 18, 2012
536
Denver
We stayed at Moab Valley RV. While we would have preferred to stay elsewhere, this RV park has electric and showers which was important to us as we were hiking throughout much of the day. Another one that we thought might be nice was Riverside Oasis.

Both of these campgrounds are at the North end of Moab. You may get some road construction noise at both. However, they are both convenient to Arches NP, Canyonlands NP and Dead Horse Point SP.

Keep checking Dead Horse as things sometimes open up. You should try and get a reservation booked for the Fiery Furnace tour in Arches if possible..
http://www.nps.gov/arch/planyourvisit/fiery-furnace.htm
 

Anak

Member
May 21, 2014
21
Too funny: I have almost the exact same shot of the lower campground. Taken from the same location for certain.

ArchesTrip462OPT.jpg


Here is what I can add for the sake of anyone else looking to camp in Arches.

We had site 39 with some friends. It is just a wide spot along the road. Fortunately there was not much traffic at all.

ArchesTrip134OPT.jpg


Notice we even had an arch in the background for our site. [8D]

There is a bit of a wash running through. It might get interesting if there were rain. We didn't get any rain. Just a rabbit:

ArchesTrip141OPT.jpg


The nice thing about this site was that we could fit the pup plus both families' vehicles.

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The worst thing we had to deal with was the wind and the sand. We had three days of substantial wind. I couldn't measure it, but from what I heard it was 45-50mph gusts. The pup didn't have too much trouble, but our friends didn't fare so well in their tents.

ArchesTrip637OPT.jpg


We found we could fit all nine of us in the pup for dinner:

ArchesTrip856OPT.jpg


Yes, that is the bathroom you can see through the windows. I was a bit apprehensive about that proximity, but it wound up being more positive than negative. Being a flush bathroom we did not have problems with the smell, and that was the only source for fresh water. We had a short walk to the faucet and wash tub.

And we got an awesome sunset for our last evening there:

ArchesTrip1020OPT.jpg
 

cztardust

Super Active Member
May 29, 2013
880
ArchesTrip856OPT.jpg

Wow! Running with a pack 7 people deep, I'd be thanking my lucky stars I was next to the bathrooms! Such an odd and beautiful landscape! I'm so glad you all posted this!
 

Unstable_Tripod

Well, there's your problem!
May 20, 2008
14,278
Seattle, Washington
I love Arches. I've been there three times (staying in the Devil's Garden CG) and now find it so very, very sad that you can't get in the campground without a reservation made many months earlier.
 

kitphantom

Super Active Member
Platinum Supporting Member
Dec 26, 2009
13,758
Albuquerque, NM
Arches is one of our favorites. Even 20+ years ago, we had to plot to get into the the campground (before it went on to the reservation system), and it has only gotten busier.
We have reservations for Sept., we chose to try the site where our tent was blown apart several years ago. Barring a micro-burst, it should be nice.
 




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