Visiting Arches National Park in August

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 and the tips below so you know what to expect when visiting Arches in August!

arches national park in august

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

The first thing you need to know is that you’ll need a ticket to enter Arches in August.

Arches National Park TIMED ENTRY program runs April through October, 2022:

Timed entry tickets will be required to enter the park from 6 a.m. to 5 p.m. daily and will allow visitors to enter the park during a one-hour specified window of availability. After entering, visitors may stay in the park as long as they wish for the remainder of the day. Reservation holders may exit and re-enter the park on the same day with a correctly validated ticket. Visitors can book reservations first-come, first-served on Recreation.gov. The park will release reservations three months in advance in monthly blocks.

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.

Things to Do at Arches in August

Most of the things to do at Arches National Park will be outside activities so plan to start early to enjoy the cooler times at morning and evening.

Arches National Park scenic drive

Arches Scenic Drive

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.

Download the Arches National Park map to navigate along the scenic road to each point of interest.

Landscape Arch at Arches National Park

Arches Hiking Trails

Most of the Arches National Park hiking trails are fully exposed to the sun. To avoid the heat and intense sun, avoid daytime hiking and plan to head out in the morning or late afternoon when it’s a bit cooler.

It’s important to stay hydrated and protect yourself from the sun: pack water bottles, wear sunscreen and a sun hat!

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

Broken Arch at Arches National Park

Arches Photography

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!

Sunrise photo spots: 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!

Stargazing 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!

BUY AT AMAZON: Arches and Canyonlands Guides and Maps:

Arches Canyonlands guides and maps

Planning an Arches National Park Vacation:

Things To Do Near Arches National Park

You’ll find a ton of other places to visit in Utah that are near Arches National Park to add to your itinerary:

Where to Stay Near Arches National Park:

There are no hotels in Arches so most people stay in the nearby town of Moab. There are all types of lodging in and near Moab from budget-friendly hotels to higher-prices resorts. You’ll also find vacation rentals, a hostel, campgrounds and RV parks.

Here are a few of our favorite places to stay near Arches:

  • Holiday Inn Express Hotel & Suites Moab – we enjoyed our stay and highly recommend this hotel due to its location close to Arches.
  • Purple Sage – our all-time favorite place to stay in Moab – walking distance to shopping, full kitchen, and only 8 units so you don’t feel lost in a large hotel. 
  • Red Cliffs Lodge – rooms up to 6 people – located 17 miles from Moab, this lodge is known for its beautiful location, winery and activities like horseback riding, fishing and more!
  • Vacation Rentals – we really like rentals with a kitchen, washer and dryer and amenities like a swimming pool and hot tub.

FREE DOWNLOAD: Arches Printable Packing List

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