The good news is that the 26-mile stretch of road through Arches National Park is getting some major upgrades this year — an improvement which will ultimately result in a smoother traffic flow and less congestion in the park in the years to come.
The not-so-good news is that the construction will cause some major delays and closures this year.
For starters Devils Garden Campground is closed until November 30, 2017.
Additionally, all the paved roads through the park will close from 7 PM to 7 AM from Sunday through Thursday, until November 30, 2017.
Devils Garden Road, the parking lot and the trails will be closed until May 26, 2017.
And last but not least, Fiery Furnace and the Salt Valley Overlook will be closed from May 30, 2017 to June 23, 2017.
So what’s the best plan of action if Arches National Park is on your to-do list this year? First and foremost, avoid the park entirely on weekends and holidays, as the traffic will be even more congested this year. Second, arrive when the park opens and plan to leave by about 10 AM, when the majority of tour buses start to show up. Additionally try and visit the heavily trafficked sites such as Devils Garden (when it’s open) and Wolfe Ranch first thing in the morning, before the crowds get there.
It should also be noted that during peak season traffic can back up all the way from the entrance station to Highway 191; and if this happens the park gates will temporarily close. So that’s just one more reason to get there early.
Although it will be a bit of an inconvenience this year, with a little advance planning you can still have a very enjoyable visit to Arches National Park during the construction. So get there early and enjoy all this beautiful park has to offer in the morning hours!