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Arch Rock at Valley of Fire

Arch Rock at Valley of Fire

Arch Rock

Located near the Arch Rock Campground, the sandstone formation is easy to access and is a must-see photo opportunity featuring a small arch, really cool sandstone formations, and a few pictographs on the backside in the sheltered area.

Learn more about the Valley of Fire State Park.


Arch Rock at Valley of Fire

Arch Rock Overview

Formed over many millennia from rain and wind slowly eroding away the minerals that were not as solid, Arch Rock was formed into an arch that spans approximately 13’x 8′ which is easily seen from the paved road that is part of the 2-mile Scenic Loop. This small sandstone arch is easy to access but please do not climb on it.

If you are wanting to photograph the Arch Rock at the Valley of Fire, I recommend later in the afternoon as the morning sun shines through the arch making it difficult to photograph without sunburst. The image above is a view from behind at approximately 7:00 AM. Photography friends have stated that the sunsets from behind and through the arch can be spectacular on a cloudy day. [Note, park rules state that you should not be out exploring after dark or it is considered trespassing, and yes, the rangers will stop you.]

While you are in the area, don’t miss out on a quick stop to photograph Piano Rock and Windstone Arch [unfortunately, collapsed but still a neat area to explore].

Click here for more information about the Valley of Fire arches.

Arch Rock at Valley of Fire Location

Arch Rock at Valley of FireArch Rock is easy to find by using the GPS coordinates below or by following the road until you see the sign for it.

From the Valley of Fire Highway, turn onto Campground Road and you will see the sign (as seen below) to show you where the formation is located.

Learn more about camping at Valley of Fire.

GPS Coordinates

36.4220° N, 114.5545° W

Arch Rock at Valley of Fire Photos

Arch Rock at Valley of Fire

When you view the arch from the backside, you will see the only pictographs in Valley of Fire State Park, which are located on the rocks to the left of the arch.

Note, this is a PICTOGRAPH and not a PETROGLYPH. Petroglyphs are carved or pecked into an exposed rock surface, while pictographs are painted onto those surfaces. If you are interested in viewing petroglyphs, then check out Atlatl Rock or venture behind the Valley of Fire State Park Cabins to find the “hidden” ones. Others can be found on the Petroglyph Canyon Trail at Mouses Tank and Lone Rock.

Arch Rock at Valley of Fire

There are multiple signs asking that visitors do not climb on the rocks and am surprised that I see folks out there climbing around on them. 

If you are caught, you will face a fine. [And yes, the rangers are out and will stop you.]

Arch Rock at Valley of Fire

Unable to withstand the blasting of strong winds and the slowly dissolving away rains of the cementing material holding its sand grains together, the rock weakened allowing an arch to form. Eventually, it will grow too large for its support, and nature’s forces will complete their work of destruction.

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References Used

Arch Rock