Northern Utah Portrait Locations
My favorite place to have photos taken is outside. Our family had photos taken last fall in Mountain Green, Utah off of Trapper's Loop. I love the long weeds, trees, and mountain background here. I love to hike and be outside, so I'm at home in the hills.
I've lived in Northern Utah most of my life. I love the Wasatch mountains, lakes, and fields in the area. We have a lot of green space and trails that are great for portraits. Often I ask families what type of background they are looking for their photos: green park, mountain vista, wild flowers, pine trees, beach, tall grass. There are so many options. Here are a few of my favorite go to places to take portrait photos. These places will work for family, senior, maternity, bridal, engagement, and about any type of portraits photos you're needing.
Antelope Island, Utah
By Syracuse, Utah Antelope Island is a state park with beautiful rocks, weeds, and a beach background. There are beautiful sunsets and lots of open space. The one down side is it gets buggy. You have to have bug spray when it gets warm. In the summer there are too many mosquitoes at sundown and I don't like to come when it gets hot. There is not much shade either.
There is a $15 charge to drive into the park. I have a state park pass which can be used at any of the state parks. There are not really any good bathrooms or drinking fountains around and it's a bit far from stores and gas stations. So for kids it might be hard unless you live close to Antelope Island like Syracuse or west Layton.
Gailey Trail, Utah
In Kaysville, Utah I live close to Nicholls' park and the Gailey Trail. I love the dirt trail and tall trees by the stream. There are a few bridges for photos also. In the spring it's bright green with tall green grass growing along the trail. In the summer it stays pretty shady and works well for photos. In the fall the yellows are brilliant and it's a popular spot for photos. It can be crowded.
I've taken photos here in the winter time when it's snowing. It's truly a beautiful place anytime of year. I walk on this trail all year round and sometimes just go for a walk with my camera. I love to see how the trail changes with the different seasons.
Dogs are allowed on the trail and often you'll see runners and bikers on the trail. The best time to be here is before sunrise or late afternoon. It's generally good for photos about any time of day with the shade.
Woodland Park, Utah
In Farmington, Utah Woodland park is a great place for large groups. I've taken extended family portraits here often. It's a grassy, green, shady park in the summer and has nice golden colors in the fall. It can also be a popular spot for photos and fencing. Yes, they have fencing tournaments here. I've seen family reunions and parties also. It's close by and you don't have to hike anywhere to feel like your in the woods.
There are no restrooms here. There is a drinking fountain. Often people are using the picnic tables or playing volley ball at the court. There are some trails in the trees around the park, which is fun.
Farmington Pond, Utah
Not far from Main Street in Farmington, Utah is a small pond where I've seen fishermen and kayaks. There are also ducks, geese, and it's a beautiful place for photos. Before sunset is a great time for golden light and the water is beautiful. Kids like to feed the ducks and it's another woodsy place I like to visit. In the winter I've seen the pond freeze so you could skate out here also.
There is a small waterfall on the north side of the pond, but in the summer it doesn't have water. There are not restrooms or drinking fountains here.
easy access from Main Street in Farmington, Utah
golden hour photos
Mountain Green, Utah
Up Weber Canyon I love Mountain Green. Anywhere along Trapper's Loop is so beautiful. You have long weeds, mountain views, and open areas. There isn't much parking along the road, but I had my family photos taken here and it's one of my favorite places for photos. There are no bathrooms close by or drinking fountains. A gas station is in Mountain Green by Trapper's loop so you could get snacks and a bathroom break there.
You'll want to wear comfortable shoes (no heels) and be ready for uneven ground. In the winter there is a lot more snow than other places and it's on the way to the Snow Basin ski resort and Huntsville, Utah.
Snow Basin Ski Resort
In Huntsville you'll drive the windy road to Snow Basin. There are a lot of different places to take photos here. It has beautiful pine trees year round. In the fall the colors change earlier here and it's a favorite place for fall photos before it gets too cold.
There are mountain backgrounds everywhere you look. The sun sets earlier here so you can go earlier in the day. During winter the ski resort closes at 4 and it starts to get dark and colder. It's nor very busy in the summer and fall. The old Snow Basin road is another favorite place for photos and you can stop anywhere along the road for beautiful photos.
In the spring and summer wild flowers grow and it's pretty. The temperatures stay cooler up here, which is nice. The gondola runs in the summer and you can climb to the top of Mount Ogden easily. One time we came in June and there was still snow. I think in 2023 there will be snow until July! They've have so much snow this year!
It's also a fun place to see moose and deer. Here are photos from the fall time at Snow Basin.
Memory Grove, Salt Lake City
In downtown Salt Lake City Memory Grove is a beautiful place with a bridge, columns, stream, and pond. It's a favorite place to walk dogs and go for picnics downtown. I like that it feels like you're in the middle of canyon and not close to downtown. I took bridal photos here and it's an amazing place. Some people have weddings here.
Tunnel Spring Park, North Salt Lake
Another favorite place for portrait photos is Tunnel Springs. It's up a long hill in North Salt Lake and has a beautiful view of the Salt Lake mountains. In the spring the hills are green and lush. As the summer comes the hills turn yellow and the long grass is golden. It's a popular spot for portraits and you'll see lots of photographers and people there for photos. There's a bike path and tennis courts so it's pretty busy. But, the park has a lot of open space and you can find a good background.
Great Salt Lake Shoreline Preserves
Another favorite place of mine is in west Layton at the shoreline preserves. Pets are not allowed here and often school groups will be here to see the birds. I've seen snakes and frogs too. It's quite wild. At sunset the mountains glow to the east and Antelope Island is at the west.
There are boardwalks and tall grass. In the rain it might be muddy and have puddles, but generally it's a great spot. There is no shade and no trees, lots of open space.
Northern Utah photography locations
These are just a few options I like to use when I take photos close to where I live in Davis County. I've also had photos at Murray Park with the giant pine trees and beautiful pond. There is shade around and it's quite green. The Ogden area has some fun locations that I'll talk about next time. So many great places to take photos. It really just depends on what background you would like for your photos. The weather has to cooperate too. City shots downtown are fun as well as country scenes. I'll show you some more urban areas next time too.
Where are you favorite locations? Do you mind the weeds or snow? I've gotten to accept the weather as it is and embrace the season I'm in. I've had family photos in the cold and it can be more challenging with small kids, but really the memory is what counts. It's always a good idea to just get your photos taken before the chance slips away.