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Kentucky Trails

See a Rare Double Arch in the Red River Gorge

Everyone knows that the southwest is arch country. But one of the best examples is in the Kentucky woods.

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This double-window never makes the lists of the country’s best arches—but that just means you can get rock-sculpture glory all to yourself. Hopewell Arch hides from crowds, Instagram, and Google (seriously, it returns only 700 hits) beside a small cascade along Copperas Creek, roughly a mile north of the unofficial trailhead on Sky Bridge Road. There’s a user trail to the arch that continues 2 miles deeper into the Copperas Canyon and its west branch to bigger-name arches, Snow and Double Deer, but this vantage is the real treat, says photographer Bob Brown. “In winter, you’ll get a great view like this without the dense forest canopy, but the white pines and rhododendrons still provide some greenery,” he says. Air temperatures may crest 40°F, but cross your fingers for subfreezing: Copperas Creek Falls, at the trail’s terminus, freezes over into “an ice volcano,” Brown says.