The Path Down to the Bryce Canyon (Utah)

I have visited Bryce Canyon previously but due to the lack of time or poor weather conditions I’ve never had a chance to hike all the way down to the bottom of the canyon.

During my latest trip, the luck finally was on my side; the weather was relatively favorable and I had the entire day to explore beautiful red rocks.

I took the featured photo during the descent to the bottom of the Bryce Canyon along the Navajo Loop Trail. The rain stopped 10-15min before I started the hike and the deep blue colors of the sky in the combination with the white clouds created a perfect backdrop for the orange rocks in the foreground.

Utah. Bryce Canyon National Park. Navajo Loop Trail
Loc: 37.623335, -112.166019


When I analyzed the scene, just before start shooting, I could see that I would have to shoot for HDR. The foreground rock wall was much darker than the sky in the background. The light was too dynamic for the single shot.

I took 3 bracketed shots (-1, 0, +1) on a tripod.


This is the first photo on my blog which was merged to HDR in Lightroom. As you may know, Adobe added to recently released Lightroom 6, new HDR Merge module. I am still experimenting with this new feature but so far I like what I see and I am planning to use it on a regular basis. ( You can find my review here: Adobe Lightroom 6 Review – New Features).

In Lightroom, I selected 3 bracketed photos and sent them to Photo Merge HDR.

Lightroom merged 3 bracketed photos and created new HDR image (DNG).

For the processing, I used a Lightroom preset based workflow, using Natural present from my Landscapes Collection (you can always download free lightroom presets here).


Camera: Sony a6000
Lens: Sony 10-18
Focal Length: 18mm
ISO: 100
Aperture: F9
Tripod: FEISOL Tournament CT-3442  – Check my FEISOL Tournament CT-3442 Review.
Ballhead: FEISOL CB-40D

Processing: Lightroom HDR Preset Based Workflow

Lightroom: import, tagging, HDR Merge, preset based processing (Natural preset from Landscape Collection)
Photoshop: contrast, color correction. I used the Stamp Tool to mask the person walking along the path.

Photoshop Plugins: 

Archiving: I save all my photos as JPEG (quality: 100%) at full resolution and with the help of the Lightroom plugin, I synchronized them with my portfolio on SmugMug for safekeeping, sharing, image hosting and online sales.

Do not forget that my FREE Lightroom Preset Collection is always free for all subscribers to my newsletter.