Mona Visits Arches

Ready for some action

Every summer, my daughter and I go on a Miata trip. Last year we hit Grand Canyon. This year, we decided to visit Arches National Park.

And since there’s a new family member with hardly 3000 miles on the clock, we thought Mona should come along on her first roadtrip. Sharka whimpered a little bit, but decided the warm garage wasn’t so bad.

What follows are various pix from three days spent in Arches National Park. It’s apparently the single most visited national park in the US, so chances are you’re quite familiar with it. I’d never visited until now and each turn and vista took my breath away. I hope some of the beauty comes across in my photos.

As always, you can click or tap on each pic for a higher res image.

So much water.


Click click click


The sky opened up the afternoon we arrived at Arches. I didn’t think this would be an issue with our enjoyment and convinced Harriet to stay in the car a few more hours and check out the park. And this was a fantastic choice as the rain sent most folks packing.

Seriously, the amount of people at Arches cannot be overstated. I think most of the country was there in Moab, causing traffic jams and being ugly toward the wait staff of the various restaurants. So having a mostly deserted National Park in the middle of the day was a miracle.

Summer flowers

Garden of Eden

Double Arch – click to view larger

Turret Arch – click to view larger

North and South Window

Ready for some rest.

This was most of our first afternoon in Arches – we went down the first road and climbed around on the easy stuff. A few hours of playing on the rocks in between cloudbursts. Neither of us fell to our doom and Ramona was a happy little Roadster the whole time.

Morning hike

Wolfe Ranch

Delicate Arch – click to view larger

The next day we hiked to Delicate Arch. This one is about a 3 mile round trip. It isn’t a difficult hike, but there’s a good bit of it that’s at about a 45 degree upward angle. Still, the weather was cool and not many people were out of bed yet.

If you click on Delicate Arch to see it larger, you can make out the flower on top. It apparently flowers once a year. We were privileged to be able to see it.

Near Devils Garden

Hot Wheels

Balanced Rock

The 3 mile hike was kind of enough for us that day. We kicked back and let Mona cover the miles for us the rest of the time and then checked out Moab’s food and souvenirs.

A few words on Mona – I’ve never owned a car that got SO much of a reaction. And almost all of it positive. Everyone we met and chatted with absolutely LOVED the Hot Wheels livery.

Folks at lunch and dinner, people at gas stations, the front desk of the hotel, random stops in the park… just everyone liked the car and wanted to chat about it. At length. Like… we were a good quarter mile away from the car taking pix and happened upon a couple hiking the other way and they asked if we belonged to the little Mazda parked way down the trail. And about 15 minutes later after a long discussion of all things Miata, we continued with our days.

I’m sold. Liveries are where it’s AT! I’m gonna do more liveries on this poor little ND. I just have to figure out the next design.

Skyline Arch

THIS is the photo I was hoping to get on the trip – an arch close enough to a road to capture the car and the arch together. Near the north end of the park is Skyline Arch, and it let me get this pic.

SO happy.


Miniet Archway

My favorite pic from the trip.

Skyline Arch

Besides giving me the street/arch shot I really wanted, Skyline Arch is just… perfect. I love it. I can’t explain why, but I think it’s the most beautiful of them all in the park. It has a presence to it.

And the glow as the sun rose from the other side? Magic.

To the next adventure.

I see why Arches National Park is the most visited in the country. It’s exceptionally beautiful. And getting to share the trip with my daughter and new ND? Yeah, I’m a lucky guy.

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  • BW says:

    Little gal is getting big!

    Looks like you guys had a great time.

  • Larry Hopper says:

    Great memories with your daughter and great photos.

    Monument Valley is not far from you and also visit-worthy. I suggest staying at the Weatherill Inn in nearby Kayenta and taking a Navajo-lead tour of the park. You do not want to drive your beautiful car on those rough roads.

  • Cosmin says:

    Awesome! The whole area around Arches/Canyonlands is truly jaw dropping. I love the scenery and natural beauty there, looks like you had a great trip!

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