Canyons of Utah: Zion & Bryce

Discover the heart of canyon country through your lens on this photographic excursion into Zion and Bryce National Parks. We’ll explore the delicate and colorful slot canyons of Zion National Park as well as the ancient weather-worn hoodoo rock formations of Bryce Canyon.

Depending which season you join us in we’ve timed this excursion to coincide with the brilliant Autumn foliage change within Zion Canyon in the Fall or the desert wildflowers in springtime. Our guides have been hiking & photographing in Southern Utah for well over a decade and we have designed this itinerary to arrive at just the right moment for ideal lighting conditions and photographic opportunities.

This landscape photography oriented expedition will put you and your lens in front of some of the most iconic and spectacular rock formations that Southern Utah has to offer. We’ll photograph the mouth of the Zion Narrows (and hike it on the “hiker” trip, Photograph Angel’s Landing and squeeze through the most dramatic slot canyons in Utah. We’ll also photograph and hike the Bryce Canyon’s unique and otherworldly hoodoo formations. After dinner we may venture out to capture brilliant, star-filled skies above Bryce Canyon.  After long days in the field, we’ll retreat to our comfortable lodges near Zion Canyon and on the rim of Bryce!

Please note: We are excited to offer both a standard and “hiker” version of this trip for photographers who like to get out and hike! Not sure which one suits you best? Give us a call at 928-478-1521 or fill out the contact form below!


  • Zion & Bryce National Parks
  • Photograph beautiful canyons & otherworldly hoodoos
  • Stunning Scenery
  • Small Groups
  • Cozy lodges
  • All-Inclusive Trip, including top-notch meals
  • Learn from & shoot alongside a seasoned pro

Canyons of Utah: Zion & Bryce

6 Days

Trip Price: from $3495 double occupancy

+$550 Single Occupancy

Deposit: $1000

Meals: Most meals included (see itinerary)

Lodging: 5 nights lodging

Start/End: Saint George, Utah

Hours: Mon-Fri 8am to 4pm Mountain Time

*trip difficulty ratings

*Backcountry Journeys is an authorized permittee of the National Park Service


Physical Requirements (for “hiker” trips)
All participants must be in good physical condition and have the ability to hike 4-7 miles per day on steep mountain trails with a daypack.

Group Size
We keep groups small to maximize your one on one time with the guide / instructor.

We will be staying in comfortable lodges near Bryce & Zion.

Most meals are included during the trip dates and we typically eat at park lodges in the evening as well as a hand picked local restaurants. We often do snacks on the trail and then return for a late breakfast during photography trips as we are often out early to capture the morning light.

Expect warm pleasant days and chilly nights. The weather is generally very dry and stable in Southern Utah however it can change on a moments notice. Remember some of the best photographs are made before, during and immediately after a storm cycle. There is no such thing as bad weather just poor layering and gear choices – please plan accordingly! For more info on what to bring please email or call us.

Price Includes
Meals, ground transportation, accommodation during the trip dates, professional photography instruction, medically certified wilderness guide.

Price Does Not Include
Airfare, alcoholic beverages, accommodations before or after the trip dates, guide & staff gratuities

Travel Details
Departure city is Saint George, Utah


Please note: We offer both a standard and “hiker” version of this trip for photographers who like to get out and hike! Not sure which one suits you best? Give us a call at 928-478-1521 or fill out the contact form below!

Most meals included – (B,L,D) denotes Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 1 (Travel Day) (D)

Travel day. Arrive in Saint George, Utah for an orientation and welcome dinner.

Day 2 (B,L,D)

We’ll catch the sunrise this morning at an iconic spot within Zion Canyon and then tackle the famous Zion Narrows for the soft midday light that can be so perfect in canyon country. We’ll wade through the chilly waters of the Virgin River and spend the afternoon photographing this immense slot canyon system.

“Hiker” Itinerary: 3-5 miles, slick uneven terrain with minimal elevation gain

Day 3 (B,D)

This morning we will set out to do some short hikes to places like Emerald Pools and the Weeping Rock. In the afternoon we’ll ascend the lovely (but steep) West-Rim trail for an incredible overlook of the canyon. Waterfalls can abound in Zion during springtime, and during Autumn the Fall Foliage is brilliant.

“Hiker” Itinerary: 5-9 miles, with 400-2,000 feet of elevation gain and loss

Day 4 (B,L,D)

This morning we will photograph one of the most iconic spots in the park. After our morning session we’ll eat lunch and drive to Bryce canyon to check in to our evening’s accommodation. We’ll have a sunset session tonight overlooking the rim of Bryce Canyon – aptly named Sunset Point!

“Hiker” Itinerary: 0-3 miles, 0-600 feet of elevation gain and loss

Day 5 (B,D)

We’ll arise early again this morning as we head out on a short two mile hike to capture the rising sun over the Hoodoos and rock formations of Bryce Canyon National Park. Russ will go over some of the intricacies of capturing desert sunrise shots and then we’ll head in for a late breakfast at our lodge.

During the middle of the day when the light isn’t as good we’ll work on some photographic techniques and hike the Fairyland Trail which features an otherworldly collection of hoodoos and sandstone rock formations. We’ll have another epic vantage point for an evening photography session then it’s off to our cozy lodge nestled in the cool higher elevation pines of Bryce Canyon National Park.

“Hiker” Itinerary: 3-8 miles, 0-700 feet of elevation gain and loss

Day 6 (B)

Our final morning of shooting will involve one of the most dramatic locations in Southern Utah – Bryce Point. We’ll head out and capture one of the most breath-taking sunrises before heading in for our last breakfast as a group! We will return to Saint George by about 12pm on the last day for flights out.

Please note that the exact sequence of the itineraries on all photography trips will be based on weather and lighting conditions. The goal on these trips is to make sure we are at the right place at the right time for the perfect light on our subjects. Also, itineraries can change for a variety of other circumstances including floods, forest fires, national park closures, road closures and more. Due to the nature of wildlife and nature photography we do not guarantee any specific sightings or specific compositions regarding wildlife or natural phenomena. 

“This trip was really a great escape. Russ runs an excellent workshop that errs more on the side of fun, adventure and getting the shot! We had so many amazing experiences I can’t even begin to thank you enough. Utah and Zion in particular is one of the most strange and beautiful places I have ever seen. Going in the fall was excellent as the leaves begin to change down in the canyons.”

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