Canyons North Rim Photo Itinerary
Day 1: St. George, Utah
Our photography adventure begins in the red rock country of St. George, Utah. This evening we meet for an informal welcome dinner at one of the local restaurants. Our Expedition Leader offers a brief orientation to the history, wildlife and ecology of the Colorado Plateau, as well as the photo opportunities that lie ahead as we explore the region in depth in the week to come.
Days 2 & 3: Bryce Canyon National Park—Scenic Helicopter Flight
Bryce Canyon is like another world. Its pink pinnacles, limestone formations and natural amphitheaters capture the imagination with endless geological surprises. Get a rare perspective on a 30-minute helicopter flight, offering the chance to get unusual aerial shots of the colorful sandstone hoodoos. Bryce's red rock walls create deep channels while whimsical rock spires carved eons ago by erosion rise hundreds of feet into the sky. Myriad photo opportunities await: capture a stunning array of colors as the light reflects off of the canyon's rock formations, natural bridges, cliffs and waterfalls. Rising early to watch the sunrise or lingering over a radiant sunset, experience the grandeur of this astounding landscape. We stay at Bryce Canyon Lodge, a classic national park hotel set amid ponderosa pines on the canyon rim. The lodge is one of few places to stay inside the park and is on the National Register of Historic Places. Restored to its original 1920s splendor, it is replete with Old West atmosphere right down to replicas of the vintage hickory furniture.
Days 4 & 5: Zion National Park
Early Mormon pioneers gave Zion its name—so stunning was its beauty that it evoked images of the Promised Land. The U.S. government agreed and made it a national park. With two full days in the park, we’ll have the luxury of exploring the larger landscape as well as photographing the minute details that captivate the eye. Take advantage of multiple vantage points from which to photograph Zion's multi-hued sandstone cliffs towering above the valley floor, and the Virgin River flowing among the cottonwoods, carving a deep canyon over millennia. Trails along the river and rock walls lead to quiet recesses where we may hear and photograph many birds at home in the American Southwest. Listen for the haunting cry of canyon wrens, look overhead for golden eagles and prairie falcons, and find American dippers and phoebes in the willows along the riverbanks.
Days 6 & 7: Grand Canyon National Park—North Rim
The Grand Canyon is one of America’s most iconic national parks, and no photographer captivated with the landscapes of the American West should miss a chance to capture its mile-deep chasm in the glow of sunset. The Grand Canyon's popularity can mean many visitors, too, so we avoid the crowds by traveling to the less-visited but no less spectacular North Rim. We have plenty of time to explore, walk along the rim, and shoot photos of one of Earth’s most spectacular natural landscapes, watching the tableau change as the light shifts throughout the day. Stay near the rim in the pine forest at the venerable Grand Canyon Lodge, a classic national park hotel with limestone walls and heavy timbers that complement the rustic beauty of the North Rim. And for those who wish, a classic Grand Canyon traveler’s adventure is available: an optional mule ride into the canyon.
Day 8: St. George / Depart
Today we say farewell to the red rock wonders of America’s canyon country, leaving a piece of our hearts behind, yet taking a multitude memories home in our stunning photographs. Our canyons photo tour concludes as we arrive back in St. George for to meet afternoon flights home (book no earlier than 1:30 pm).
Please note: This itinerary is subject to change, as departures may visit Grand Canyon, Zion and Bryce in a different order than what is outlined above. Your precise itinerary will be communicated to you once your trip dates are confirmed.