From Arches to Canyonlands


Aug 9, 2007
November 2010

I thought my trip south last weekend was going to be my last for a while. I was wrong. Bill and I put together a quick trip to the Moab area this past weekend. It was really an excellent trip. We made it into Arches a little late on Saturday due to getting a flat tire outside of Price. That kind of sucked, especially when the tire shop decided they couldn't fix it. Nothing like driving around with one mis-matched tire.

In Arches we first hit Tower Arch which was really an excellent hike. The trail passes over Klondike Bluff and past the Marching Men before arriving at Tower. Great hike.

Hiking up the sandy hill just before reaching Tower Arch

Inside Tower Arch

The Marching Men

After that we made our way over to the Garden of Eden to catch sunset. We tried to get up onto Elephant Butte but there was one little section of 5th class climbing that I didn't want to come back down in the dark. Bill was totally up for it but I was being a wuss about the down climbing in the dark thing. Fortunately the sunset was incredible from below as well.




After the incredible sunset we set out under the darkness of the new moon to Delicate Arch. We passed what seemed like at least 100 people streaming down the trail with confused looks and comments. It was really a unique hike in the dark, the first bit of the trail we didn't even need headlamps. Once on the slick rock we only veered off path once. We met some friends at Delicate and spent the next few hours taking photos of the arch and playing with different variations of light with Bill's new flash setups. Really an eye-opening experience for me. And did I mention how incredible it was to have Delicate Arch all to ourselves for something like 3 hours?


After Delicate Arch we made our way back to camp in the Devil's Garden CG in Arches. We tried for some star trails but the clouds were not cooperating. In the morning we were treated once again to an incredible light show in the sky. Our camp was just a hundred yards or so from Skyline Arch so we walked over and took some pictures.


After the sunrise was done blowing our minds, we packed up camp and made the drive over to Island in the Sky. First stop, Aztec Butte. These are ome ruins on top of the butte that neither of us knew about.


After Aztec Butte it was on to False Kiva. Pictures can not do this place justice.


So that's the last camping trip from me for a bit and what a great one it was. Next time out will be The Wave in December. Can't wait!


Jan 18, 2012
Crazy that you also got a flat tire just after Price. I think the correlation is Bill bring flat tire bad-luck :)


Aug 9, 2007
I have hiked out to Tower a couple of times, and the nice thing is I have never passed anyone else on that trail. Almost the same thing with Aztec Butte too. I think I want get out to Aztec and shoot some night pictures. I was debating on doing that tonight, but I wouldn't get there till 1am

It was closed when I was there last month. Might want to call and see if it's open first.

Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk


Jan 17, 2012
It was open two weeks ago but can be closed at any time due to road conditions.


Jan 21, 2012
Delicate Arch under the stars and all for yourselves must have been a wonderful experience, your photos are awesome!


I lava it!!!
Jan 19, 2012
amazing trip, especially with Delicate Arch at night. :twothumbs:
How did you illuminate the Arch? With an external flash?

I visited the Aztec Butte ruins last June, but I cannot recommend it to hike up there with wind gust of more than 45mph like I had. It was a little bit challenging. :D
And I can't wait to see False Kiva by myself this year. It's on my list for quite a while, but somehow I never made it to the Kiva. When is the best time to get there? In the morning? Late afternoon?


Jan 19, 2012
Delicate Arch under the stars and all for yourselves must have been a wonderful experience, your photos are awesome!
x2! :twothumbs:
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