Natural Bridges National Monument is a nice, compact park in southeastern Utah. The landscape around is of light colored sandstone, which is a great material for forming arches. Natural Bridges National Monument protects three nice natural bridges that are easily seen from above via short walks or can be visited at the base without difficulty. The park features a 9 mile loop road that leads to the three natural bridges. You can hike to each individually, or you can hike an 8.6 mile (13.8 km) loop to them all on an unmaintained trail along the dry river bottom. Click the picture of each bridge below to see a more detailed article about each.
Sipapu Natural Bridge
Sipapu Natural Bridge comes first and is my favorite of the three. Its size is impressive – at 220 high and 31 feet wide, it ranks at #13 of largest natural bridges and arches in the world. The hike to see it is .6 miles each way.
Kachina Natural Bridge
The second bridge is Kachina Natural Bridge. It can be viewed from above with a short hike to an overlook, or a .75 mile one-way hike to the bottom. With a height of 210 feet, span of 204 and a width of 44 feet, Kachina is ranked #20 on the list of the world’s largest natural bridges and arches, meaning you get to see two top-20 near each other.
Owachomo Natural Bridge
The third bridge is Owachomo Natural Bridge. It is the smallest of the three but is also the most eroded. The bridge is still impressive at a height of 106 feet, a span of 180 feet and a width of 27 feet. The thickness is a trim 9 feet. The hike here is only .2 miles one way and is mostly level on uneven ground.
The park also features some ancestral Puebloan ruins, but these are not as impressive as others in the area. Horse Collar Ruin is viewable on a .6 mile overlook trail if you are interested. Much more interesting ruins are available in the area at Mesa Verde, Canyon De Chelly and in Aztec, New Mexico.
Natural Bridges National Monument is located 42 miles north of the small town of Mexican Hat and 38 miles west of Blanding, Utah. From Page, it can be part of a nice route that includes Monument Valley, Goosenecks State Park, Valley of the Gods and the Moki Dugway. It is also 113 miles southwest of Moab, Utah.
To see an interactive map of Natural Bridges National Monument, go here.
A list of all the natural bridges and arches I’ve visited, along with useful descriptions and advice, is here.