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Broken Arch Loop Trail

Intermediate
 4.3 (23) RECOMMENDED ROUTE

This enjoyable loop leads through fin canyons with sand dunes and slickrock.


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Map Key

1.4

Miles

2.2

KM

Point to Point

5,278' 1,609 m

High

5,137' 1,566 m

Low

177' 54 m

Up

177' 54 m

Down

5%

Avg Grade (3°)

14%

Max Grade (8°)

Dogs No Dogs

Features Views

Family Friendly This short loop, which leads through cool dinosaur-evoking fins, is easily diable by the whole family.

Bikes are not allowed on this trail.

Overview

This short loop takes hikers directly past Broken arch with an optional off-shoot to Tapestry Arch (via the Tapestry Arch Spur).

Description

This describes the loop in the counter-clockwise direction, but either way works. Starting from the southern loop end of the Devils Garden Campground, the Broken Arch Trail leads southeast, away from the hubbub. A gentle incline brings you up into the rock formations right away. There are lots of rock jumbles here for kids to scramble on and good views from this higher ground. Enter a slim canyon between fins and head downhill over mellow terrain. Exit this interesting canyon back onto the desert floor and pass the junction with Broken Arch Access on the right.

Continue on the Broken Arch Loop Trail over flat, sandy ground. No shade here! Upon reaching the still standing (just cracked), Broken Arch, take a break and contemplate the amazing forces that create such marvelous rock formations. Next, travel in and out small ravines, over sheets of slickrock and through sandy washes. Once you're nearly back at the campground look for a signed path heading north. Take this Tapestry Arch Spur trail for a bonus visit to a worthwhile arch. You can see the arch from the beginning of the spur trail among the domed rocks, but instead of heading overland straight there, stay on the established trail and follow the helpful cairns.

After the short, flat trip to Tapestry Arch, regain the Broken Arch Loop trail and reenter civilization at the campground. The trail terminus is not exactly in the same place as its beginning. To reach the original start point, head left (southeast) on the campground road to the lower loop and take another left to reach the base of the loop.

Some users report being disappointed by this trail because you see Broken Arch in the distance before you reach it (instead of being revealed as a surprise) and the arch itself is cracked (not really broken or collapsed). It is only a letdown if you're expecting something else!

Shared By:

Megan W

Trail Ratings

  4.3 from 23 votes

#515

Overall
  4.3 from 23 votes
5 Star
39%
4 Star
57%
3 Star
4%
2 Star
0%
1 Star
0%
Recommended Route Rankings

#44

in Utah

#515

Overall
48 Views Last Month
1,619 Since Mar 5, 2015
Intermediate

23%
0%
77%
0%
0%
0%

Photos

Broken Arch and snow covered La Sal Mountains.
Dec 24, 2019 near Moab, UT
Broken Arch
Dec 24, 2019 near Moab, UT
The "back side" of Broken Arch
Dec 24, 2019 near Moab, UT
Rock towers along Broken Arch Trail.
Dec 24, 2019 near Moab, UT
Broken Arch
Feb 26, 2018 near Moab, UT
Broken Arch.  Arches National Park, UT.
Mar 7, 2015 near Moab, UT

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All Clear 18 days ago See History
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Check-Ins

Jun 1, 2020
Loretta Wolak
Feb 21, 2020
Devon Hames
Cold & tiny patches of snow on the ground, but blue skies and had the trail absolutely to ourselves!
Jan 28, 2020
Chrissy Erzig
Nov 24, 2019
Andrew Hahn
Sep 28, 2019
Matt Culpepper
Sand Dune Lolipop 2mi — 2h 00m
Sep 20, 2019
Katrin Klaus
Lediglich vom Sanddune Arch bis zum Broken Arch gelaufen
Sep 9, 2019
Stray Cat
Aug 14, 2019
Scott Meier