Braving the freezing cold!

Winter is a double edged sword in the Utah photography scene. On one hand, we have some of the most gorgeous winter scenery (in my opinion at least) in the southern 48. On the other hand, to photograph in that scenery often means suffering through frigid temps. I believe my thermometer maxed out at 19F on this shoot up American Fork Canyon. I was shivering so hard I had to actually change my camera settings to adjust for the shake!

Lucky for me, Hyacinth Wonders is capable of top tier modeling in literally every condition I've ever shot her in. You can't even tell she's also dying from the cold in these!

I'm obviously a lover of all things Norse so when Hyacinth reached out and asked if I'd like to shoot this look she put together featuring Norse-themed gear from Lunafide, I immediately said yes. We headed up American Fork Canyon in Utah County to one of the most popular local spots for winter photos and made some magic!

Tibble Fork Reservoir is an amazing spot but it definitely comes with its risks! Here are my top tips for having a beautiful and SAFE shoot here:

  • Always check the road conditions. You can see if the gates are open AND view live traffic cams of the roads here
  • Don't go out on the ice unless it is four or more inches thick. Check in with the ranger at the fee station or ask one of the ice fishermen that are frequently there for ice conditions.
  • Be aware of windchill. The reservoir is in a little canyon that sucks frigid winds in off the peaks!
  • Be aware of wildlife! Especially in the pine areas. I've had run-ins with moose twice here!
  • Weather can change fast. Even if you brave the weather in a dress/costume for a few minutes, make sure you have winter gear in your car in case you get stuck up there and have to wait for a road plow. There is NO cell reception up here. Come prepared.