Visiting Arches National Park in August

Arches National Park in Utah is an incredible natural wonder that should be on everyone’s bucket list.

If you’re planning to visit Arches National Park in August, it’s important to know what to expect: weather, things to do, what to pack, and where to stay.

Use this Arches National Park travel guide to plan your August vacation with tips to avoid the heat and beat the summer crowds!

Arches National Park in August

Arches is filled with dramatic desert landforms, arches, and sandstone formations. In the summer it’s best to limit outdoor activities to the cooler mornings and evenings.

Keep reading for our tips to navigate Arches National Park during the busy and HOT summer season!

We’ve also put together some helpful itineraries to plan your Arches vacation:

Arches National Park Travel Bundle
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A Photo Tour of Arches National Park

Take a visual tour through Arches National Park to see the stunning landscapes you’ll see when you visit!

Visiting Arches National Park in August

Arches National Park is open 24/7. In August you’ll need an Arches Timed Entry Ticket to enter the park from 6 am to 5 pm.

Don’t worry if you can’t get a ticket because you can still visit the park as long as you enter before 6 am.

In August we highly recommend getting to the park EARLY anyway to avoid the heat!! Time your entry so you can see and photograph the sunrise at Arches National Park!

Another option is to visit the park after 5 p.m. when the temperatures and crowds in the late afternoon start to diminish. You won’t need a ticket to see and photograph sunset at Arches National Park, or enjoy stargazing at night!

Is August a Good Time to Visit Arches National Park?

August is not our favorite time because it will be hot and crowded when visiting Arches National Park.

If you want to avoid the heat and crowds, check out our list of best times to visit Arches National Park with information about what to expect during each season and every month of the year.

Arches Weather in August

August is when many plan their Arches National Park summer vacation before school starts again.

It’s important to know the Arches National Park weather means highs near 100 and lows in the high 60s degrees Fahrenheit.

Arches National Park doesn’t have a lot of shade so plan your outdoor activities like hiking in the cooler mornings and evenings.

In August we recommend you enjoy the scenic drives in your car with the AC running, or the hotel swimming pool during the heat of the day.

It’s important to stay hydrated and use sun protection:

You’ll experience a dry desert environment at Arches so be sure to also pack and use lip balm and lotion as well!

Things to Do at Arches National Park in August

Here’s a list of Arches National Park summer activities. In August you’ll want to do the outdoor things in the cooler times at morning and evening.

Ranger Programs in August at Arches

Arches Ranger-led programs are a great way to learn about the park and it’s attractions. Check out what activities are available during your stay in August.

Be sure to stop by the visitor center and have a chat with one of the park rangers. Let them know what interests you and get their recommendations.

If you’re visiting Arches National Park with kids, be sure to grab the Junior Ranger booklet so they can earn their Junior Ranger Badge!

Arches National Park scenic drive
Scenic Drive through Arches

Arches Scenic Drive in August

The Arches National Park scenic drive, including the two spur roads, takes 2 to 3 hours. You’ll add more time if you plan to stop and take photos or hike any of the trails along the route.

The 43 mile road is paved with pullouts and parking lots perfect for any Arches National Park photography you want to do. Some of the arches and landmarks can be seen from the parking lot, or by a short walk.

We recommend the Arches GuideAlong App to hear fun behind-the scenes stories and local tips that play automatically as you drive, based on your GPS location.

Landscape Arch at Arches National Park
Landscape Arch

Arches Hiking Trails in August

Most of the Arches National Park hiking trails are fully exposed to the sun. We recommend you explore the Arches National Park summer hikes in the morning or late afternoon when it’s a bit cooler and the sun isn’t so intense.

Plan to visit The Windows Area and Devil’s Garden Trail in the morning so you don’t have to fight the crowds.

And Delicate Arch is awesome at sunset for photography, but it may be impossible to get a parking spot. You may want to hike to Delicate Arch in the morning as well!

You’ll want to plan the popular and busy hikes first thing then fit in the other shorter hikes like Sand Dune Arch, Skyline Arch and Balanced Rock during the later afternoon when parking spots open up more frequently.

Delicate Arch at sunrise
Delicate Arch at sunrise

Arches Photography in August

You’ll find yourself taking a ton of Arches National Park photos. In August you’ll want to get up early to photograph sunrise at Arches National Park. Doing this you won’t need to worry about getting a timed permit!

There are great spots to photograph sunrise at Arches National Park: La Sal Overlook, Courthouse Towers, and the Windows area. If you don’t want your photos to have people climbing on the rocks, you’ll also want to photograph Balanced Rock, Turret Arch or the Windows in the morning.

Watching and photographing sunset at Arches National Park is awesome. You’ll find many locations it will be hard to get photos without people! This is especially true at Delicate Arch, Balanced Rock and The Windows.

We share tips like this in our 3 day Arches & Canyonlands Itinerary and Photography Guide. It details all the best places and times to take pictures!

You can also download a free checklist of the Arches National Park photo spots!

milky way over fins at Arches National Park
Milky way over fins near Sand Dune Arch

Stargazing in August at Arches

You can’t beat stargazing at Arches National Park! The slogan “Half the Park is After Dark” invites you to take one evening to enjoy a star-filled sky! In August you can see the milky way from 9:30 pm to 1:30 am.

Did you know Arches (and the Moab area) is internationally recognized as one of the best places for stargazing? It gets that distinction because of its remote location, accessibility, altitude and clear skies.

Arches National Park is a popular destination for astrophotographers so you won’t be alone in the park at night. Be sure to use a headlamp with a red light!

Arches National Park Tours in August

With experienced guides on Arches National Park tours, you can explore all the amazing sights the park has to offer and make sure you don’t miss anything.

Booking a tour to explore Arches National Park is a great way to learn more about the area and its history: hiking, scenic drive, rock climbing, off road driving, and photography to name a few.

Arches Camping in August

In August you will need a reservation for Arches National Park camping at the one campground in the park.

Reservations for camping at Devil’s Garden Campground are required from March 1- October 31. If you don’t reserve a spot ahead of time, you most likely will need to find a place to camp outside the park. You can reserve these spots up to 6 months in advance. 

You’ll also find RV Parks near Arches National Park for camping in case you can’t get a spot in the park.

If you want to enjoy camping in style, check out these options for Glamping near Arches National Park!

Arches Canyonlands guides and maps

BUY AT AMAZON: Arches and Canyonlands Guides and Maps

Things To Do Near Arches National Park in August

You’ll find more things to do near Arches National Park to add to your itinerary:

Lodging Near Arches National Park in August

There are no lodges inside Arches National Park so most people stay in the nearby town of Moab. There are all types of lodging options in and near Moab from budget-friendly hotels to higher-prices resorts.

Packing List for Arches in August

Use our Arches National Park Packing List to make sure you have the right clothing and gear for visiting in August! Grab your free printable packing checklist by clicking the image below!

arches national park in august

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