Grand View Arch is located high above Grand View Canyon in Saline Valley and is perhaps Death Valley's largest and most awe-inspiring arch. Difficulties encountered on the hike include overcoming the 1st obstacle in Grand View Canyon to reach the starting point of the arch spur trail and staying safely away from cliff edges while hiking up to the arch. A Google Earth map of the hiking route (turned to the west for better viewing) can be found by clicking on the button above. GPS coordinates for the beginning of the arch spur trail are 36° 52.437'N, 117° 38.622'W. GPS coordinates for Grand View Arch are 36° 52.576'N, 117° 38.549'W.
This report for Grand View Arch is actually part of the larger report for Grand View Canyon. Grand View Canyon is located out in the Saline Valley area and is the best and most spectacular canyon to be documented so far in the Last Chance Range. Within Grand View Canyon, a short but very steep and exposed (on one side) spur trail leads up to Grand View Arch. The spur trail starts just above the end of the 1st Narrows. In order to reach this spur trail, it is necessary to either climb a somewhat challenging dry fall or figure out a way to bypass the dry fall. There may be a potential bypass to the right of the dry fall, but I didn't have the time to fully test it out to check for exposure or safety. But once you return to the main canyon after passing through the 1st Narrows, a fairly obvious spur trail is visible heading up the left hillside. For those interested in reaching Grand View Arch, there are two things you need to be aware of. First, this trail gains 450 feet in elevation in only 1/4 of a mile. So it is very steep and slow-going. The spur trail is mostly on loose gravel and dirt. Second, there is extreme exposure on the right side of the trail if you wander close to the edge while hiking up. A hiker can safely stay away from the edge by using common sense and keeping their distance. But if someone were to start getting curious and wanted to look over the edge, it could put them in a bad spot. So while hiking this spur trail, always stay on the trail and keep a good amount of space between you and the cliffs on the right side. About halfway up the spur trail, the route becomes less obvious as it passes through some areas of rock. In this area, simply stay to the left of the ridge where you will be safely away from the edge. Grand View Arch is pretty much visible the entire way, so it is not like you are going to get lost or something. During my hike, I realized that the best and safest way to reach Grand View Arch is to hike up and past it on the left side, drop into the very short canyon, and then work your way back down to the arch. And the arch is well worth visiting. It has been determined that Grand View Arch is likely the largest arch in Death Valley National Park. That is quite amazing in view of the fact that the arch has only now, in November of 2013, been brought to the attention of the park staff and the public by means of this report and the Grand View Canyon report. The previous largest arch known in the park was probably the Telephone Arch. Grand View Arch was first discovered by Lizard Lee many years ago. If you are interested in learning more about the history of the arch, stop by and see him sometime. Our hike took place on November 13, 2013.
This hike contains sections of climbing, exposed bypasses and/or high dry falls and may require safety ropes and equipment in order to complete the entire hike. Those without the proper training, experience, and safety gear should keep a safe distance away from the sheer cliffs on the east side of the trail or simply photograph the arch from the canyon below.
Many more photographs taken during our visit are available for viewing for this destination. To see all of them, choose one of the two options presented below. The two options are Slideshow viewing and Trip Report viewing. The Slideshow option allows for viewing larger images with an autoplay option and a full screen option (available on most browsers). This option works very well for large computer screens and tablets. The Trip Report option allows for viewing smaller pictures in a standard scroll-down format and enlarging of any panoramic photos taken during our visit. Click on the option of your choice to view all of our photos from this destination. The Slideshow format opens in a new browser window and the Trip Report format uses the same browser window for viewing.
TRIP REPORT FORMAT