In an effort to alleviate crowding and offer visitors a better experience, Utah’s Arches National Park will join the growing number of national parks in the United States that now require a timed entry reservation. 

Starting April 3, 2022, the park will pilot a new, seasonal reservation system for all visits between 6am and 5pm. Visitors will need to show this reservation (which can be made for a nominal $2), a photo ID as well as a park pass to enter the park.

Located just outside Moab, Arches National Park has grown in popularity in the last decade, now averaging more than 1.6 million visitors a year. 

Crowded Delicate Arch on a Busy Summer Day in Arches National Park
The famous Delicate Arch is not as quiet and lonely as often photographed © Aaron Hawkins / Getty Images

Overcoming the overcrowding of the National Parks

The Arches National Park's reservation system is one of many new programs the National Parks is implementing as it grapples with record demand. Glacier National Park piloted a reservation system for Going-to-the-Sun Road for the 2021 summer season. Rocky Mountain and Yosemite also instituted reservations systems to manage crowds in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. 

Zion National Park also recently announced it would institute a permitting system for its iconic Angels Landing hike.  Shenandoah National Park announced it would implement a permitting system for hiking Old Rag in March 2022. 

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Arches National Park
An unusually remote corner of Arches National Park at sunset © Getty Images / iStockphoto

How to make a reservation for Arches National Park

The easiest way to make a reservation is to do so online through recreation.gov or the recreation.gov app. You can also call the reservation line at 877-444-6777 if you are calling within the United States or 606-515-6777 if you are calling internationally. 

Reservations are only required for visits between April 3 and October 3, 2022 between the hours of 6am and 5pm. Those visiting outside those hours or with reservations for camping, backcountry, Fiery Furnace or other special use permits do not need to make reservations. 

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Hikers/Tourist at Arches National Park, Turret Arch, Utah.
If you miss your window of time to reserve, there will be additional entry times available at 6pm Mountain Time one day prior to your visit © Getty Images

When do reservations for Arches National Park open?

Each month, a new batch of reservations will open at 8am Mountain Time. The schedule for reservations looks like this:

  • January 3: April reservations (April 3–30)
  • February 1: May reservations (May 1–31)
  • March 1: June reservations (June 1–30)
  • April 1: July reservations (July 1–31)
  • May 1: August reservations (August 1–31)
  • June 1: September reservations (September 1–30)
  • July 1: October reservations (October 1–3)

If you miss the date for getting a reservation, the park will open a limited number of reservations at 6pm Mountain Time one day prior to your visit. 

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How much does a reservation for Arches National Park cost? 

It’ll cost you a nominal $2 for the timed entry in addition to the park entrance fee. You’ll have to show the reservation, show your park pass or pay the entrance fee and show photo identification in order to enter the park at your assigned time. 

You might also like: 
17 Best things to do in Moab
Want to hike Zion's Angels Landing? You'll soon need a permit
Zion or Bryce Canyon? How to choose between Utah's top national parks

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