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Christmas in Arches 2022

Moab Winter Weekend | Moab Area Rock Art XXXIV
Saturday & Sunday, December 24-25, 2022

Christmas is here once again, which means that it was time for Diane and I to continue our annual tradition of spending Christmas Day in Arches National Park. This would be my fifteenth year visiting Arches around the yuletide holiday and Diane has been joining me for the past nine of those years on Christmas Day. Since Christmas fell on a Sunday this year, Diane and I headed down to Moab on Saturday morning and we did a little exploring around the area before spending the night in town. Then we got up early on Sunday morning and drove to the Devils Garden Trailhead so we could hike out to Landscape Arch at sunrise before we spent the rest of the day in other parts of the park.

Walking through the fins of Devils Garden shortly before sunrise.

Devils Garden Morning

Following the Devils Garden Trail to Landscape Arch. There wasn’t much snow on the ground this year, but there were some lightly snow-packed sections of trail.

Devils Garden Trail

The first light of the day strikes the fins along the trail.

First Light

Soon we had a view of Partition Arch above.

Partition Arch

We made it to Landscape Arch on another Christmas morning to make sure that it’s still standing after another year.

Landscape Arch, Christmas 2022

The Shark Fin

Shark Fin

After hanging our below Landscape Arch for a bit we turned around and headed back to the trailhead so we could explore some other parts of the park for the rest of the day.

Back to the Trailhead

Brontosaurus Fin

Brontosaurus Fin

Next, we drove down into Salt Valley and followed the rough 4WD track to the Tower Arch Trailhead.

Tower Arch Road

We wandered amongst the fins of the Klondike Bluffs on our way over to Tower Arch.

Tower Arch Fins

We took a short detour to hike below the Parallel Arches.

Parallel Arch

Then we made our way over to and underneath Tower Arch.

Tower Arch View

It’s been quite a while since either of us had been to Tower Arch, so it was nice to revisit.

Underneath Tower Arch

Before leaving the Klondike Bluffs area I wandered up a shallow wash to check out a large hoodoo I had spotted in the distance.

Wash Wandering

There were some nice sandstone fins lined up above the wash.

The Fins

I found a cool little slot canyon that was carved in-between the fins.

Slot Between the Fins

Hiking up a tilted landscape to the large hoodoo.

Tilted Land

There was a pretty good view of the Marching Men from here.

Marching Men

Finally, I reached the large hoodoo and it was very cool!

Big Block Hoodoo View

Big Block Hoodoo

Big Block Hoodoo

After returning to the Jeep from the hoodoo we left the park and then hiked into the backcountry to explore the sandstone rim above the Visitor Center.

Sandstone Wandering

Near the edge I found a couple large potholes that were full of water.

Large Icy Pothole

Overlooking the road into Arches National Park with the La Sal Mountains on the horizon.

Entrance Overlook

After hiking back down from the rim above the Visitor Center it was starting to get late, so we called it a day and headed back home a little early. The sky was becoming mostly overcast and I wasn’t hopeful for a nice sunset anyway. We made it back home shortly before sunset after another nice holiday exploring Arches National Park!


Moab Winter Weekend 2022

Before Christmas Day we had spent most of Saturday driving some 4×4 trails in my Jeep, hiking some canyon rims and searching for rock art and ruins. Instead of creating a separate short Trip Report, I though it would be better to share some of those photos here.

We started our Saturday morning in my Jeep north of Moab.

Jeep Trail

We visited a couple dinosaur tracks along the way.

Dinosaur Track

We also explored the relics of an old mining area.

Old Mining Relics

We took in the views as we walked along the edge of a valley.

Ridge View

We walked the rim of a canyon to check out Fang Arch, which has an impressive view behind it.

Fang Arch

This was our final late afternoon view before we returned to town, grabbed some dinner from Pasta Jay’s and then retired to our hotel room.

Late Afternoon View


Moab Winter Weekend Rock Art & Ruins

Below are a couple photos of the rock art and ruins that we saw throughout the weekend. Some of these were places I wanted to revisit and others were places I finally found after searching for years. Overall, it was a pretty good weekend!

Triangle Men Panel

Triangle Men Panel

Upper Petroglyphs

Many Triangle Men Panel

Petroglyphs & Pictographs

Petroglyphs & Pictographs

Petroglyphs Over Pictographs

Petroglyphs Over Pictographs

There are quite a few faded Barrier Canyon Style figures found here.

Faded Pictographs

Faded BCS

Little Red Pictograph

Lines Around the Corner

Lines Around the Corner

Here’s a nice little granary that we viewed from the opposite rim of the canyon.

Granary View

A closer look at the granary.


Granary Wall

Granary Wall

Circles & Sheep Panel

Circles & Sheep Panel

>> Christmas in Arches 2022 Photo Gallery


  1. sunsetpar
    sunsetpar January 3, 2023

    Thank you for sharing with us Randy! Hope you and those you love have a great 2023. Tom McC

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