Visiting Arches National Park in the Fall

Arches National Park in the fall is a wonderful getaway destination. There is so much to do, see and photograph at Arches in September, October and November. 

Use this Arches National Park travel guide and the information below to plan your fall vacation.

Arches NP in the fall everything you need to know

We share things to do, what to pack, where to stay, expected weather and more for planning a trip to Arches in the fall!

Check out these itineraries to help plan your vacation to Arches National Park:

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 the Fall

Here’s everything you need to know to plan your fall trip to Arches:

Timed Entry at Arches in the Fall

It’s important to note that Arches has a TIMED ENTRY program from April through October:

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.

BUT if you don’t have a ticket, you can still visit the park as long as you enter before 6 am. In the fall we highly recommend getting to the park EARLY anyway 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 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 Fall a Good Time to Visit Arches National Park?

The fall months are a terrific time of year for visiting Arches National Park. But it’s considered the busy season so be prepared for 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 to decide if fall is the best time for you to go to Arches.

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Fall Weather at Arches

Fall is the perfect time for visiting Arches National Park. The temperatures during the day range from 60 degrees to 80 degrees Fahrenheit. The lows will dip down into the 30s  to the 50s. 

With the cooler temperatures at night, you will definitely want to bring a warm hat and gloves for the nights and early mornings. 

Dressing in layers is especially important as it gets warmer throughout the day. We recommend a fleece jacket, warm hat and gloves for the cooler mornings and evenings.

If you are hoping to see snow at Arches, you will have the best chance of seeing it while visiting Arches National Park in the winter

Tips for Visiting Arches National Park in the Fall

In this video we share our tips for planning a fall vacation to Arches National Park.

Things to Do In Arches National Park in the Fall

If you enjoy outdoor activities, here’s a list of things to do at Arches National Park during the fall months:

Arches Visitor Center in the Fall

While visiting Arches National Park we love to make the visitor center our very first spot! It is open every day in the fall.  

Take time to talk to the park ranger and tell him things that are of interest to you and get tips and ideas on other things to do. 

Arches Ranger- Led Programs in the Fall

There are fun and interactive ranger-led programs that run through the end of September.

If you’re visiting Arches in early fall, the ranger-led programs are fun to do especially if it is your first time at the park. 

Arches Scenic Drive

The Arches National Park scenic drive is a must-do activity. It includes two spur roads and takes about 2 to 3 hours to complete. 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.

Arches Hiking Trails in the Fall

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

When hiking at Arches in in the fall it’s important to stay hydrated and protect yourself from the sun: pack water bottles, wear sunscreen and a sunhat!

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.

Fall Stargazing at Arches National Park

Did you know that Arches has some of the best stargazing? There’s a saying that says “Half the Park is After Dark”. Take the time to stay in the park on a clear night and you’ll see why!  

Our favorite locations to photograph the stars and milky way at Arches are the Windows area and Balanced Rock. In the fall the milky way is visible after sunset.

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!

Photograph Arches in the Fall

You’ll find yourself taking a ton of Arches National Park photos.

Sunrise Photography at Arches: Plan 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.

Sunset Photography at Arches: 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!

If you’re serious about photography, check out our 3 day Arches & Canyonlands Itinerary and Photography Guide. We share the best photography spots broken down by the time of day, and give you our favorite 3 day itinerary! 

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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