Morning Glory Arch
Distance: 2.4 miles (one way)
Type: Out and back
Morning Glory Arch is a large natural arch in the back of a side canyon of Grandstaff Canyon in Moab, Utah. The 2.4 mile hike to the arch wanders along a perennial creek below gorgeous sandstone cliffs before entering the majestic side canyon that contains Morning Glory Arch.
Morning Glory Arch Trail Description
Begin along the trail as it meanders above the creek, high sandstone walls surrounding you on both sides. After meandering along the slickrock, the trail will drop down close to the creek where you’ll be engulfed in riparian desert vegetation. At this point, the sound of the rushing water will begin to overpower the noise of the rushing highway.
Continuing onward, the canyon soon widens as the rust-colored cliffs climb high above. A small waterfall soon cascades along the side of the trail as the canyon begins to widen and narrow the further in you travel.
The first of a series of creek crossings will finally occur at about 1 mile in. From here the trail makes frequent crossings, none of which are terribly difficult outside of any high water scenarios.
After one more creek crossing at xx miles in, the trail will begin climbing relatively steeply up a ridgeline and into a side canyon. Advancing over the sandstone ridge, Morning Glory Arch comes into view at the back of the canyon. Continue following the trail in that direction to reach the arch.
At the back of the canyon, Morning Glory Arch sweeps across overhead, impressing visitors with its surprising size. A small seep trickles from the canyon walls at the back end of the arch, creating nourishment for the nearby cottonwoods and other vegetation in the area. When you’ve admired the area and arch to your content, head back out the same way you came.
From downtown Moab, drive north on Highway 191 for 2.5 miles until you reach the junction with Highway 128. Turn right onto Highway 128 and follow that for 3.1 miles until you see the signed parking area for Grandstaff Canyon and park there.