Saturday, May 16, 2009

Arches National Park's Fiery Furnace Hike

A couple days ago I blogged about Arches National Park and mentioned the Fiery Furnace Hike. Today I was looking at my pictures of the Fiery Furnace Hike and decided to blog them.

That is Big Ed helping his sister, Lydia, get across a deep chasm. There are parts of this hike that are a bit taxing for those with acrophobic tendencies, such as myself.

The Fiery Furnace is a maze of confusing high sandstone fins where it would be easy to get lost without a guide. It is possible to go into the Fiery Furnace guide-free, but you must pay a fee to get a permit. To get the permit you must have already attended a ranger led hike or be hiking with someone who has taken the guided tour. You'll also have to watch a 5 minute video about safety and protecting the park.

The Fiery Furnace Hike takes from 2 and a half to 3 hours, likely depending on how slow the slowest hiker is. I imagine my hiking group tended towards the 3 hour, or more range.

You get breaks from the hiking where you can nibble a snack, drink water and ask the ranger questions. The ranger imparts quite a lot of information during the hike.

You have to plan ahead to do the Fiery Furnace Hike because it is very popular, the available hiking slots fill up fast. So get your ticket as soon as you arrive in Moab, or when driving by the ranger station when heading south to Moab. The tickets cost $10 for adults, $5 for kids 7 to 12 and seniors, kids younger than 7 are free.

The hike is a bit strenuous, sometimes you have to steady yourself with your hands to get over cracks and maneuver along narrow ledges. At one point you have the option to take a route where you crawl through a tunnel like opening. I opt out of that route every time I've hiked the Fiery Furnace. And so do a few others. But both Goober Twins squeezed through the opening, both Wally and Big Ed, with Wally having the harder time of it, as you can sort of see in the picture.

The Fiery Furnace Hike is one of my all-time favorite things I've done, which, I suppose, is why I've hiked the hike more than once and would hike it again if the opportunity arose.


Anonymous said...

I'm convinced. I want to hike the Fiery Furnace hike.

Cheap Tricks and Costly Truths said...

I would have to opt out as well...I suffer from claustrophobia

Durango World America said...

For some reason I can handle caves without getting that panic feeling. Why I do not know. But not crawling thru a small tunnel like space.

Cheap Tricks and Costly Truths said...

The catalyst for my phobia derives from many years ago, when at the age of 6, I zipped myself up in a hanging clothes bag. Alone on my Mississipian grandmother's enclosed porch, for what seemed several hours, I struggled, but couldn't free myself. After screaming, kicking, hyperventilating to no avail... my grandfather rescued me...:)

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