Photography Tour Overview: The red rock of Canyonlands, Arches and Monument Valley, combined with the grandeur of Colorado’s peaks draped in colorful Aspen. Also Mesa Verde, Telluride, Crested Butte, ghost towns, wildlife and more. It comprises of breathtaking scenery that includes canyons, towering monoliths, 14,000 foot mountains swathed in golden Aspen, ghost towns and rapid-strewn rivers etcetera. This is some of the best photography the USA has to offer and at an ideal time. We hope you’ll consider joining us.
itinerary . . .
But first things first! We suggest that you set your camera's clock to the local time, as your images will then synchronize with the times in our included photo tour
Days 1 + 2 |
The Aspen region
Our Utah and Colorado photography tour will get under way with the included lunch in Glenwood Springs, along with a digital orientation of images you can expect to take on the trip. We'll commence our photography amid the rolling acres of turning Aspen groves as we approach the resort town of Aspen, and after hotel check-in we'll make our way to Maroon Bells for the late light. Maroon Bells looks even better at dawn, and we’ll be
back there to photograph the spectacle of the 14,014’ peak, along with stands of colorful Aspen
- and hopefully a Moose - early on day 2. Mule Deer also frequent the area. For the remainder of our time here we’ll explore Independence Pass, plus
a pair of ghost towns and more.
Aspen, 2 nights
Day 3 |
Aspen to Crested Butte
More early light photography around Aspen, breakfast, then on west via the brick kilns of Redstone to Marble which is where the Lincoln Memorial marble was quarried. From here we'll take a 4WD detour over rugged terrain for the classic Crystal Mill shot on the Crystal River. South, then east toward Crested Butte via McClure and Kebler Passes which places us on the south side of Maroon Bells. Between the two passes are fabulous stands of Aspen which will be in the process of turning color . . . and capped by snow-clad Colorado peaks. On to Crested Butte for the night.
Crested Butte, 1 night
Day 4 | Crested Butte
First light photography nearby, and following breakfast we'll photo-explore Washington Gulch prior to departing in the direction of Telluride. Shots of Blue Mesa reservoir in the Curecanti national recreation area as we make our way to some superb photography on the Dallas Divide. Things
get under way with swathes of color in front of the San Juan Mountains topped by Mt. Sneffels at 14,150’, and continue with rustic fences, Mule Deer sightings and more terrific scenery on a back road loaded with great shots that always slow our descent into Telluride. Evening light near Telluride, with old barns
and a mountain range being the main attractions.
Telluride, 1 night
Day 5 |
Telluride to Silverton
First light on 14,017’ Mt. Wilson to start our day, then following breakfast we’ll go south from Telluride for yet more fabulous mountain vistas
before progressing slowly back over the Dallas Divide with many photo-stops scheduled. Ouray is next for street scenes, and the 'roof-top' view plus a detour to nearby Box Canyon falls. We’ll then continue south and traverse the 'Million Dollar Highway’ with photography stops on Red Mountain Pass. On to the old mining community of Silverton for the night. Silverton hasn’t changed a whole lot since those gold-mining heydays of the late 1800’s, and the flavor of the old west is
Silverton, 1 night
Day 6 | Silverton
to Mesa Verde National Park
Shots of Silverton and surrounding peaks bathed in the early light, and
following breakfast we'll explore Silverton . . . and most likely bump into some
infamous town characters! At midday we rendezvous with the Durango and Silverton
Narrow Gauge Railroad locomotive for a series of pictures prior to continuing
south on the ‘Million Dollar Highway’ to Durango. On west to Mesa Verde National
Park to check-in, and venture out for photography at west-facing Anasazi ruins.
Mesa Verde NP, 1 night
Days 7 + 8 | Mesa Verde
to Monument Valley Tribal Park
The 4,000 plus sandstone ruins of cliff dwellings formerly inhabited by the Anasazi Indians at Mesa Verde will provide
a series of great shots again this morning. There are cliff and canyon views, plus several points of interest among the dwellings built 600-1300 AD, and we'll take a guided tour among the largest collection at Cliff Palace. Expect some stair and ladder climbing for your photo opportunities. This will be a unique day inasmuch that we’ll start in Colorado,
then pass through New Mexico, Arizona and Utah. On via Goosenecks State Park on the San Juan River, and 'Milepost 13' to Monument Valley for the late light on this most incredible of array of red rock.
On day 8 our photography will commence at dawn with the Mittens view. For the remainder of the day you will be guided around Monument Valley by a local Navajo and John,
recording many classic scenes and taking our time to get the very best from each situation.
Monument Valley Tribal Park, 2 nights
Days 9, 10 + 11 | Arches and Canyonlands National Parks
At dawn, a last look at the Mittens as they are touched by the first light. As we depart the Monument Valley area we'll pause for a pair of classic horizon scenes, and then go north to Natural Bridges National Monument. As the name suggests, the park contains naturally
water-carved arches that were centuries in the making. We
then make one last detour today for Navajo petroglyphs, and on north to
Moab via one more arch.
On days 10 and 11 we’ll photo-explore the highlights of both Arches and Canyonlands National Parks. Early and late light in Arches National Park is scheduled, and the hike for the last light on Delicate Arch will be most worthwhile. Dawn at Mesa Arch in Canyonlands is also outstanding, and a veritable classic sunrise image.
Moab, 3 nights
Day 12 |
Moab to Grand Junction
We’ll ‘mop-up’ around Moab photographically speaking this morning, and then
depart toward Grand Junction. Taking the scenic route we’ll follow the Colorado
River, and take a detour for additional imagery before rejoining the Colorado River
and making several stops. Back to Colorado for our last photography sessions of
the trip at the Colorado National
Monument. The included dinner on the last night of our photography tour will feature an 'It's You!' presentation of clients in action by John.
Grand Junction, 1 night
Day 13 | Departure day
As there isn't any photography scheduled for the day of departure, your flight home can be arranged for any time today.
Photo Tour Photographer/Leader: John Baker, Travel Images Photography Tours
The preceding itinerary is a copyrighted work by John Baker Photographer LLC, and Travel Images Photography Tours
Enhancing Your Photography Skills
Describing the assistance you'll receive on one of our photography tours takes more than a few words, so for greater detail please go here.
Exertion level: This photography tour is classified as 'mildly strenuous' to 'strenuous'
Mesa Verde National Park: Moderately strenuous, plus ladder climbs if so inclined
Delicate Arch image: Strenuous
Landscape Arch image: Mildly to moderately strenuous based upon distance and temperature on the day
Turret Arch image: Short strenuous scramble at the end of a moderately strenuous ascent of steps
Mesa Arch image: Mildly to moderately strenuous
In every other respect this photography tour is considered non-strenuous to mildly strenuous
Do you need a Visa for travel to the United States?
Travelers from all countries can do a quick check of visa requirements here or here
Our international clients may need to contact the embassy of their intended destination in their own country for a visa. Go here or here
Included in the Trip Cost: The following items are included in the trip cost . . .
Photography instruction throughout the trip by John
All accommodations with private facilities [en-suite]
Lunch on day one of the trip
Dinner on the last night of the trip
On-vehicle snacks and bottled water
All ground transportation
Airport pick-up on day 1, and drop-off on departure day. Arrival prior to day 1 is not included
Entrance fees for sites and activities listed below under ‘Admissions Included’
Following the trip, field notes describing the time, place and subject of each photo stop, and a disc containing images of clients 'in action' on the trip
Not Included in the Trip Cost: The costs for these items are the responsibility of each participant . . .
Travel costs between your home and the gateway airport and return
Any transportation or travel costs incurred prior to or after the tour’s inclusive dates
Pre-tour and/or post-tour accommodation
Lunches and dinners except for lunch on day one of the trip, and dinner on the last night of the trip
Entrance fees or costs related to optional sites or activities not included in the itinerary
Personal items such as the hotel mini-bar, laundry etcetera
Incidental charges incurred at our accommodations such as movie rentals, internet and phone
Passport or visa expenses
Airport departure taxes, if applicable
Admissions Included in the Trip Cost:
Admission to Mesa Verde, Canyonlands and
Arches National Parks is included in our Commercial Organization, Commercial
Tour Fees, and/or a Commercial Use Authorization [CUA] permit
4WD transport to the Crystal Mill near Marble
Monument Valley Tribal Park
Colorado National Monument
All other possible rides, admissions or excursions are optional and not included