Natural Bridges National Monument
Natural Bridges preserves some of the finest examples of natural stone formations in the southwest. On a tree-covered mesa next to deep sandstone canyons, three natural stone bridges formed when meandering streams slowly cut through the canyon walls. Natural Bridges National Monument was established in 1908. In honor of the Native Americans that made this area their home, the bridges were named Kachina, Owachomo, and Sipapu. This unique park also has one of the darkest night skies in the country. In 2007, Natural Bridges National Monument became the first International Dark Sky Park certified by the International Dark-Sky Association.
Plan Your Visit
Map and Directions
The entrance to Natural Bridges is at the end of UT-275, which is roughly 35 miles west of Blanding, Utah, on UT-95. Driving time from Blanding is about 45 minutes.
Park hours: Natural Bridges is open 24 hours a day, year-round. Note: the entrance road can sometimes closed in winter for short periods after winter storms.
Entrance fee: $10/private vehicle. Good for 7 days (subject to change). Click to learn more about fees.
Things to Know
Can I ride my ATV/UTV in Natural Bridges? ATVs, UTVs and OHVs are not permitted in the park. Motorbikes must be highway-legal.
Can I take my pet? Activities with pets are very limited. Pets are not allowed on any hiking trails but may accompany visitors in the campground, and at overlooks and pullouts along the paved scenic drives. Pets may be walked on roads or in parking lots, but must be leashed.
Can I get something to eat in the park? Limited snack items are available at the bookstore. Otherwise, food, gas, lodging and other services are available in the nearby towns of Blanding, UT; Monticello, UT; and Cortez, CO. Visit Utah's Canyon Country for more information.
Safety: Hydration is essential in the desert, even in winter. Take and drink lots of water as you explore the park. Protect yourself from the sun by using sunscreen, wearing a hat and light-colored clothing. Wear sturdy shoes. Water is available at the visitor center, but is limited to five gallons per person.
What’s the weather like? This is a high desert region that experiences wide temperature fluctuations, sometimes over 40 degrees in a single day.
- Spring and fall daytime highs average 60 – 80° F (16 – 26° C) and lows average 30 – 50°F (-1 to -10°C).
- Summer temperatures often exceed 100° F (38° C), making strenuous exercise difficult.
- Winters are cold, with highs averaging 30-50° F (-1 to -10 C), and lows averaging 0-20° F (-17 to -7°C).
Local weather conditions and forecasts are available from the National Weather Service.
Help protect the park: Every Step Counts! Help us protect the dark lumpy biological soil crusts during your visit. Please walk only on trails, rock or in sandy washes (where water flows when it rains), and keep all vehicles and bikes on designated roads
Things to Do
Visitor Center: Stop in to see exhibits, watch a park orientation video and shop the bookstore. Rangers are on hand to answer questions you might have about the park. Visitor center hours change with the season. Click to learn more about hours. The visitor center is closed on Thanksgiving, December 25, and January 1. Water is available at the visitor center, but limited to 5 gallons per person.
Interpretive Programs: Evening programs are offered during the summer; check the park bulletin boards for the schedule.
Scenic Drive: The scenic drive is a paved, n-mile (14 km) loop that provides access to all the bridges. Along the way, you’ll be able to stop and view each bridge by walking a short distance to an overlook.
Hiking: Hike the trails to each of the spectacular bridges to get a closer view of the size and grandeur of these natural formations. Or enjoy the longer Loop Trail (8.6 miles; 13.8 km) that passes all three bridges. You can also take the Horsecollar Ruin Overlook Trail to see the remains of an ancestral Puebloan cliff dwelling. Click to learn more about hiking options.
Campground: The 13-site campground is open year-round on a first-come, first-served basis. The fee for camping is $10.00 per night; valid federal lands passes are honored. Sites will accommodate up to eight people and one vehicle (26-foot length limit). Sites have a fire grill, picnic table and tent pad, but no running water, electricity or hookups. Note that gathering firewood is prohibited. There are two vault toilets at the campground; flush toilets are available 24-hours a day at the visitor center (1/4 mile (.4 km) walk). Water is available year-round at the visitor center, limited to 5 gallons per person.