Last Updated on June 28, 2023

Sand Dune Arch is a natural arch located in Arches National Park, Utah. It is a popular destination for hikers and photographers, and is named for the sand dunes that surround it.

There are two picturesque trails that lead to Sand Dune Arch, the Sand Dune Arch Trail and Broken Arch Trail, both well-maintained and easy to follow.

Once you reach Sand Dune Arch, you can enjoy the views of the arch and the surrounding landscape. You can also climb up on the arch for a closer look.

Sand Dune Arch. Arches National Park, Utah
Sand Dune Arch. Arches National Park, Utah

What is Sand Dune Arch?

Sand Dune Arch is one of the many natural arches located in Arches National Park in Utah. It is a popular destination for hikers and photographers, known for its unique location amidst the surrounding sand dunes.

Sand Dune Arch is a small arch, measuring only 30 feet across. It is located in a secluded spot, tucked away among sandstone fins.

The arch is named for the accumulation of sand that has built up around it over time. The sand is constantly shifting, creating a constantly changing landscape.

The arch is located just off the Delicate Arch Viewpoint Trail, and can be reached in about 15 minutes from the trailhead.

Getting There

To get to the Sand Dune Arch, you will need to enter Arches National Park and follow the main road until you reach the Delicate Arch Viewpoint parking area. The trailhead is located at the back of the parking lot.

Arches National Park is located in Grand County, Utah, in the eastern part of the state. The park is situated near the city of Moab, which is the closest major city and serves as a popular base for visitors.

Sand Dune Arch Hiking Trails

There are two hiking trails that lead to Sand Dune Arch:

Sign at the Sand Dune & Broken Arch trails
Sign at the trails

Sand Dune Arch Trail

This is a short and easy 0.4-mile (0.6 km) round-trip trail that takes you through deep sand to discover a hidden arch nestled between tall sandstone walls.

The trail is mostly flat, with a slight elevation gain of 40 feet (12 m).

The trail itself is mostly level but does cross deep sand, so be prepared for a sandy hike.

During your journey, you’ll be surrounded by the stunning beauty of the sandstone fins and the peaceful ambiance of the secluded arch.

It’s important to note that climbing or jumping off the arch is strictly prohibited to preserve its natural integrity.

Although the trail is generally accessible, there is one narrow section that may pose challenges for wheelchairs.

Additionally, dogs are not allowed on this trail, but service animals are permitted in national parks.


Broken Arch Loop Trail

This is a moderate 2.3-mile (3.7 km) loop trail that passes by Sand Dune Arch. The trail has an elevation gain of 59 feet (18 m).

This trail will lead you across a grassland and offer panoramic views as you ascend to an arch perched above a pygmy forest of piñon pine and juniper trees.

The loop trail also takes you through a section of the campground, providing a diverse hiking experience.

The Broken Arch Loop Trail is considered moderate in difficulty, and there is an elevation change of 59 feet (18 meters). Like the Sand Dune Arch Trail, this trail is not wheelchair accessible, and dogs are not permitted.


About Arches National Park, Utah

Arches National Park is a stunning national park located in eastern Utah, adjacent to the Colorado River and about 4 miles (6 km) north of Moab.

Arches National Park is a must-visit destination for any traveler interested in seeing some of the most spectacular natural formations in the world. Located in southeastern Utah, the park is home to over 2,000 natural arches, as well as other sandstone features such as towering cliffs, deep canyons, and balanced rocks.

Delicate Arch and Other Attractions

The park’s most famous arch is Delicate Arch, which stands 65 feet tall and 150 feet wide. Delicate Arch is one of the most photographed arches in the world, and it can be seen from a viewpoint along the park’s scenic drive.

Other popular attractions in Arches National Park include Landscape Arch, Balanced Rock, Double Arch, and Windows Arches.

Landscape Arch is the longest arch in Arches National Park, stretching an incredible 306 feet across! It’s hard to believe that this natural wonder was created by the forces of wind and water over millions of years.

Balanced Rock is another amazing sight to behold. This massive sandstone boulder appears to be balanced on a small base, defying gravity. It’s a popular spot for photographers and hikers alike.

Double Arch is a pair of arches that are joined at the top. These two arches are a stunning example of the power of erosion.

Windows Arches is a group of three arches that are located in a sandstone alcove. These arches are named North Window, South Window, and Turret Arch. They offer stunning views of the surrounding landscape.


Activities

Arches National Park in Utah offers a range of activities to enjoy amidst its stunning natural beauty.

Hiking

Hiking is a popular choice, with trails suitable for all skill levels. You can explore the park’s iconic natural arches and rock formations on various hiking trails.

Each trail offers a unique perspective and allows you to witness the remarkable beauty of these geological wonders up close.

Scenic Drive

Embark on a picturesque drive along the park’s Scenic Drive, offering breathtaking views of the surrounding landscapes and prominent landmarks.

The route provides numerous pullouts and viewpoints where you can pause, capture stunning photographs, and appreciate the majestic beauty of the park.

Camping and Backpacking

Immerse yourself in the wilderness of Arches National Park by camping or backpacking. You can spend a night under the starry sky, surrounded by otherwordly red rock formations.

Devil’s Garden Campground is a popular choice, but make sure to make reservations in advance, as camping spots are limited.

Arches National Park Visitor Center

Enhance your understanding of the park’s geology, flora, fauna, and cultural history by visiting the Arches National Park Visitor Center.

Engaging exhibits and knowledgeable rangers provide valuable insights into the park’s natural wonders and offer guidance for your explorations.


Planning your visit

The best time to visit is during the spring and fall seasons, as they offer pleasant weather for outdoor activities.

It is recommended to avoid the crowded summer months. For a more peaceful experience, consider visiting during the shoulder seasons or on weekdays.

Arches National Park provides a range of lodging options nearby, including hotels, motels, campgrounds, and RV parks. You can choose accommodations based on your preferences for comfort or a closer connection to nature.

After a day of exploration, you’ll find several restaurants near the park where you can refuel. Whether you’re looking for quick bites or fine dining experiences, there are various dining options available to satisfy your cravings.

When planning your visit to Arches National Park, remember to bring water, sun protection, sturdy shoes, weather-appropriate clothing, snacks, a backpack, navigation tools, a camera, a first aid kit, and a respectful attitude.

It’s important to follow the principles of Leave No Trace, ensuring that you leave the park as you found it, respecting the environment and minimizing your impact on the natural surroundings.

For more detailed information and to plan your trip to Arches National Park, please visit the National Park Service website.

Arches National Park Tours

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