Dragonfly Canyon - Arches National Park

Canyoneering Permit
Arches National Park

          Canyoneering is an adventure sport using climbing equipment for rappels and other technical descents through canyons. While Arches has no real "slot canyons," many of its sandstone walls are cross-hatched with narrow passages appropriate for this type of exploration.

          Arches National Park developed a Climbing and Canyoneering Management Plan in December 2013 in order to protect the natural environment and the park's resources and visitors' experience. Primary actions in the CCMP are the implementation of group size limits, canyoneer registration, better canyoneer education, safety standards, and canyoneering access and egress routes. All canyoneers are asked to act responsibly and observe park regulations.

On-Line Canyoneering & Climbing Permit:
          The system allows you to obtain canyoneering and climbing permits in Arches National Park (unless canyoneering in the Fiery Furnace).

Regulations:
          Canyoneers are required to complete a free self-registration permit (unless canyoneering in the Fiery Furnace).

          Groups using canyoneering routes in the Fiery Furnace or Lost Spring Canyon are limited to 6 persons per group. All other canyoneering groups are limited to 10 persons per group. Larger groups must split and use different routes or use the same route at different times of the day to avoid queuing at rappel sites and to minimize impacts on resources and on other visitors.

          To protect the geologic features for which the park was established, it is prohibited to climb, scramble or walk upon, wrap webbing or rope around, or rappel off any named or unnamed arch with an opening greater than three feet.

          The physical altering of rock from its natural positions, such as chiseling, breaking rocks to reinforce crevices and pockets as anchors, glue reinforcement of existing holds, and gluing of new holds is prohibited. The intentional removal or "gardening" of lichen or plants from rock is prohibited.

          Bathing and immersing human bodies is prohibited in water sources that do not have water flowing both in and out at the time of the activity. Swimming and wading also are prohibited in water sources that do not currently have water flowing both in and out, except in cases where it will be necessary to enter the water source in order to traverse a route.

          Use of deadman anchors is prohibited.

          Any new installation of fixed gear requires a permit. If an existing item or fixed anchor is judged unsafe, it may be replaced, in kind, without a permit.

          Software left in place is required to match the rock surface in color. Bolts, hangers and chains must be painted the color of the rock surface before installation (see photo).

          The installation of pitons is prohibited.

Canyoneer Registration:
         
All persons planning to canyoneer in Arches National Park are required to register by obtaining a free permit. There are no daily limits on routes (except the Fiery Furnace - see below), so canyoneers can get their permit on the day of their trip. Registration is free, it increases canyoneer safety, and helps the park maintain the desired conditions of the backcountry zone.

Canyoneers have two options to obtain permits:

  1. Self-register at the kiosk outside the visitor center, or at a second kiosk located at Winter Camp Ridge for Lost Spring Canyon travelers.

  2. Obtain a permit via an on-line reservation system.

Fiery Furnace:
          If you intend to enter the Fiery Furnace? Your entire party must come to the visitor center front desk to get a Fiery Furnace permit ($4 per person). Fiery Furnace permits are limited to 50 persons a day and do sell out during the busy season. Canyoneering in the Fiery Furnace is best attempted with the guidance of someone who already knows the route.

Fiery Furnace Video:
          All persons entering the Fiery Furnace on a day-use hiking permit are required to watch this video at the Arches National Park Visitor Center at the time the permit is obtained. Please note: watching the video online in advance will not waive that requirement.

Please take only pictures and leave only footprints.


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