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The Windows Loop + Primitive Trail Loop

Arches National Park

Moab, Arches + La Sal Mountains, Utah

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The Windows Loop + Primitive Trail Loop

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  • North window on approach.- The Windows Loop + Primitive Trail Loop
  • The Windows in late afternoon.- The Windows Loop + Primitive Trail Loop
  • Looking south to the La Sal Mountains while rounding the south edge of The Windows.- The Windows Loop + Primitive Trail Loop
  • The Windows as seen from the east side.- The Windows Loop + Primitive Trail Loop
  • Southeast view while standing in North Window.- The Windows Loop + Primitive Trail Loop
  • The Parade of Elephants and Double Arch near sunrise from the trail to The Windows.- The Windows Loop + Primitive Trail Loop
  • North Window in the early morning.- The Windows Loop + Primitive Trail Loop
  • Sunrise in the North Window "sill."- The Windows Loop + Primitive Trail Loop
  • Turret Arch in the morning.- The Windows Loop + Primitive Trail Loop
  • Westward view out of the North Window at daybreak.- The Windows Loop + Primitive Trail Loop
  • Double Arch.- The Windows Loop + Primitive Trail Loop
  • Turret Arch.- The Windows Loop + Primitive Trail Loop
  • View looking across to the South Window.- The Windows Loop + Primitive Trail Loop
  • View from under the Double Arch.- The Windows Loop + Primitive Trail Loop
Overview + Weather
Pros: 
Short hike. Great photographic opportunities. Impressive geology.
Cons: 
Crowded.
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Region:
Moab, Arches + La Sal Mountains, UT
Congestion: 
High
Preferable Season(s):
Winter, Spring, Summer, Fall
Day-Use/Parking Pass Required:
National Park Pass
Total Distance: 
1.20 mi (1.93 km)
Trailhead Elev.: 
5,160 ft (1,573 m)
Net Elev. Gain: 
115 ft (35 m)
Trail Uses:
Hiking
Trail type: 
Loop
Dogs allowed: 
No
Current Local Weather:
Powered by Dark Sky

Today

Clear throughout the day.
67°F
33°

Mon

Partly cloudy overnight.
73°F
43°

Tue

Partly cloudy starting in the afternoon.
72°F
46°

Wed

Partly cloudy until evening.
70°F
47°

Thu

Mostly cloudy starting in the afternoon.
65°F
49°

Fri

Partly cloudy in the morning.
56°F
39°

Sat

Clear throughout the day.
64°F
40°
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Hike Description

Hike Description

Pro Contributor

A great way to access some of the spectacular geology of Arches National Park via a short, easy trail with minimal elevation gain is by hiking the Windows Loop. This area can also provide some terrific photographic opportunities, especially at sunrise.

Great visuals of both North and South Windows (sometimes collectively referred to as The Spectacles) can be enjoyed along the trail. When hiking the trail in a counterclockwise direction, the first spur trail encountered is a short side trip to visit Turret Arch. The next natural destination is North Window. This is the larger of the two windows, and it is more easily accessible for an up close look. It is easy to climb "into" the North Window, just remember you're likely in someone's photo. Traveling just a bit farther, South Window appears in the same fin, but it is higher up, and getting an up close look requires traversing some rather steep terrain.  

The west side of the windows loop is the primary trail, and it is by far the most visited. By continuing counterclockwise onto the Primitive Loop Trail that passes on the east side of the windows, the area can be enjoyed from an alternate angle in perhaps a little less crowded setting. In addition, rounding the south end of the windows provides a few nice views of the La Sal mountains.

When visiting The Windows, keep in mind that Double Arch, the Parade of Elephants, and Balanced Rock are all in very close proximity.  

Updates, Tips + Comments

Updates, Tips + Comments

Field Guide + Trail Map

Field Guide + Trail Map

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Location + Directions

Location + Directions

Nearby Camping + Lodging

(7 within a 30 mile radius)

Nearby Adventures

(46 within a 30 mile radius)

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