Balanced Rock

  • Difficulty
  • 0.74km
  • 11m
  • 0.5h
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This quick jaunt from the parking lot brings you around the world famous Balanced Rock tower. Visible from miles away (even visible from our Portal Overlook hike), this amazing rock formation is an obvious roadside attraction.

Getting there

From Moab drive north along the 191, crossing the Colorado River until you reach the signposted turn towards Arches National Park. Pay your dues at the park entrance, then drive along the Arches Scenic Drive for 8.8 miles (14.2 km). On the right will be a well signposted turnoff for Balanced Rock. There is a relatively small parking lot, however it clears quickly. No toilets are found at the trailhead.


Total Gain: 11m


Type of Hike Loop
Crowd Levels Busy
Route Signage Good
Toilets No
Family Friendly Yes
Backcountry Campgrounds No
When to Do Year Round

 Detailed Description

This lollipop-loop hike leads out from the parking lot, then circles around Balanced Rock before returning back along the original approach. This is a very short hike, however sections are quite rocky and may not be suitable for sandals or infants. Young children, however, should have a blast on this hike!

The rock ‘balanced’ on top is essentially the size of three school busses, and the entire tower totals at 128 feet tall (39 m)! From a distance, balanced rock and the towers surrounding it take the form of a hand. You will get very intimate views of the rocky tower, as well as magnificent panoramas of the towers and cliffs that are scattered throughout the plateau.

Insider Hints

  • If you are doing several hikes in Arches National Park in a single day, consider doing this one last as its parking lot is the least busy.