I’ve been wanting to spend some time photographing Utah for a while. There is so much to see and do that you could spend countless months exploring and taking pictures in this photogenic area. This November I finally got the chance (and I will be back for more).
I started the drive in Oregon and made my way across a couple states to get to southern Utah. On the way I made a quick stop in northern Nevada and was able to capture some early evening star shots with bristlecone pine trees that are thousands of years old.
Our first stop in photographing Utah was Bryce Canyon National Park. There are a lot of great options here from Thor’s Hammer to Natural Bridge (above) and plenty between. Sunrise point is aptly named and always a good option if you don’t want to do any scouting. Of all the places we visited, this was one of the easier places to access plenty of great photo locations. You can pretty much park your car and walk less than 5 minutes to get to most of the spots.
Grand Staircase Escalante National Monument
The GSENM is easily the hidden gem when you’re photographing Utah. It’s much larger than the National Parks and has a ton of amazing sights to see. They have everything from slot canyons to arches. It contains the famous wave (which we were unable to secure a permit for), but don’t let that stop you from visiting. Metate arch (above) in Devil’s Garden was super cool to see. You could easily spend hours at sunrise and sunset finding awesome compositions at Devil’s Garden (I know I did).
Slot Canyons are awesome when photographing Utah
I had so much fun exploring and capturing images inside the many slot canyons located in the National Monument. The Peekaboo to Spooky canyon loop was especially cool…except for the bumpy dirt road drive to get there. 4-wheel drive isn’t mandatory, but quite helpful.
Zion National Park
Most people think of Zion National Park when they think of southern Utah. It’s definitely got some iconic hikes like Angel’s Landing (which was fun) and the Subway Tunnel (Left Fork). It was quite fun with some swimming in 32 degree water (definitely need a wetsuit) and rappelling. The pictures I was able to capture there made the trip totally worth it.
We had a great time in southern Utah and can’t wait to come back in January. I wanted to spend more time here, but after a couple weeks of perfect weather, the rain came in and blocked out our view for quite a few days. Time to migrate to Nevada and capture some awesome photos there!