If you stumbled upon Utah on Tinder, you would scroll through the photos and go “Yeah, no way she’s real. Probably just some guy trying to catfish me.” Except that she is real and she’s emotionally available and she’s into you. The 10 photos below were taken last winter at Utah locations you can visit anytime — most of them quite easily. So go ahead, fall in love. She’s worth it (and a permissible exception to monogamy for those of you who already have your special one).
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Oleksandr Mokrohuz / @olksandr_mokrohuz
Location: Reflection Canyon, Glen Canyon National Recreation Area
When I bought the America the Beautiful National Parks pass, I saw a picture of this amazing location. I immediately wanted to get there to see it on my own. This beautiful canyon is hard to reach. First you need to endure the Hole-in-the-Rock road — 4-wheel drive and high clearance needed. And if it is not enough, you need to hike 16 miles cross country. But it's well worth it!
Winter Sunset on Utah Lake
Wesley Aston / @wesleyaston
Location: Utah Lake at Vineyard Beach
This location is at Vineyard Beach on the east side of Utah Lake. There is a lot of shoreline to explore in the shallow water which can all be viewed from the paved trail running alongside Vineyard Road. You have a wide open view from this area to view the lake and sky any time of the year.
Aimee Burrows / @aim.eff.bee
Location: Lake Blanche
I hiked in Big Cottonwood Canyon after the first snowfall of the season. The trail was kind of a tunnel made of still-leafy branches bent over with heavy snow. I found a calm Lake Blanche and shot a sweet reflection of Sundial Peak. Most of the snow was melted by the time I hiked back down.
Sam Wood / @natures_perspective
Location: Antelope Island
I wanted to get closer to the bison as it was laying down in the snow so I could get a few more pictures. As I took a few steps he calmly stood up, turned his head, and stared me down. I stopped in my tracks and snapped this photo. Then quickly got back to the car.
Melanie Allington / @mamojeep_photography
Location: Utah Lake at American Fork Harbor
I went out to the harbor to take photos of the ice on Utah Lake. I had never seen the ice do this before, I was excited to see and capture it with my camera. This is absolutely fascinating to me.
Arwin Levinson / @arwin.l
Location: Bryce Canyon National Park
Symmetry in Motion
Ellen Nicole Allen / @ellennicoleallen
Location: City Creek
I was walking with friends through the City Creek mall courtyard to see the Christmas lights at Temple Square. I've often walked past these fountains, but on that day I really liked how the light captured the moving water, and how they perfectly frame the LDS Conference Center in the distant background. I wanted to capture both an instant in time and a sense of the moving water.
The Joy of Being
Joanna Alvord / @joanna.alvord
Location: Canyonlands National Park
This shot was taken during my quick weekend getaway to relax, to recharge, to reflect. I packed a few things and drove to Moab, not knowing what's ahead. Nature photography is like a box of chocolates: you never know what you are going to get. The sunset at Grand View Point in Canyonlands was priceless. The dancing rays of the setting sun make "doing nothing" okay. We all seem to forget about the joy of just being here.
Darlene Smith / @darlenesmithphotography
Location: Bryce Canyon National Park
Winter is our favorite time to visit the parks of southern Utah. Fresh snow always makes things more beautiful than they already are. We were hiking on the Bristlecone Loop Trail in Bryce Canyon when this simple tree on the edge of the cliff caught my eye. With the layers of blue and moving clouds, I couldn't help but stop and photograph it.
On Golden Pond
Mary Waterman / @marywatermanphotography
Location: Provo River
The skies on this mild winter morning looked like they might be spectacular so I hurried to a favorite trail along the Provo River. I'd hiked about a mile in when the sunrise lit up the clouds above Mount Timpanogos in a fiery blanket of gold that was reflected in this pond near the river. Moments like these are a gift!
Blood, Moon and Stars (Bonus Photo!)
Chris Byrne / @chrisbyrnephotography
Location: Rockville (right outside Zion)
I created this image on my last night staying in Zion National Park. Using the PhotoPills app on my phone I was able to determine (unfortunately) that the moon would be below the mountains and hidden during the peak. So we basically had one option and that was to drive outside of the park and get out of the canyon and hope that I could line it up with something for context and interest. We got a few miles out and pulled over on the side of the road as we were driving right towards the moon. It was so dark and there were so many stars that I decided to take a few shots and see what I could get. I was blown away by the color and the stars and decided that this would be my keeper shot of the night. This final image is basically straight out of the camera with no color adjustments made at all. It really was that orange!
Camera settings: ISO 3200, f/5.6 for 2 seconds.