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Dinner reservations at Bryce, Zion & Grand Canyon around lighting for photos

Dinner reservations at Bryce, Zion & Grand Canyon around lighting for photos

May 13th, 2007, 05:07 PM
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Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 311
Dinner reservations at Bryce, Zion & Grand Canyon around lighting for photos

I am making dinner reservations (for August!) at Bryce, Zion and the Grand Canyon (North Rim) where we will be staying, and I had a question about lighting for photos. The person at the lodge thought the sun set around 8:15pm in August.(The sun sets much earlier in the east in August). As we're interested in lighting for photography, would we be better off eating dinner earlier at 6pm - or going later (we don't want anyone passing out from hunger either!)
Is service fairly efficient at the park lodges, so if we ate earlier, we'd be out in time to shoot photos or would that set us up for a rushed meal? (I suppose we could always eat at 5 if need be).
carolv is offline  
May 13th, 2007, 05:18 PM
Join Date: Jun 2005
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For Zion, I recommend a mid to late afternoon snack, then hiking until dark. Have dinner around 8:30 or 9 when it is dark as there isn't much to do in the evening anyway, unless you have a full moon - nighttime hiking there is really great in August.

In Bryce, we chose to eat early (like 5:00) so we could walk the rim trail in the evening to enjoy the changing light and colors of the canyon.

Grand Canyon (North Rim)is tricky for dining as there is only 1 dining room at North Rim. If there is a thunderstorm, the views from the lodge are quite a thrill. Again, you could eat a snack and eat late or just take what you can get for dinner reservation that seems to fit your needs best. Take a flashlight. Depending on where your room is, lighting is inadequate after dark.
elnap29 is offline  
May 14th, 2007, 01:29 PM
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Thanks for the input. We'll just eat early or late and make sure we have snack food and flashlights in advance.
carolv is offline  
May 14th, 2007, 03:03 PM
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Each area has different topography which affects the light at sunrise/sunset. Zion is situated a valley on more or less of a north-south axis with mountains on either side. Unless you are up high, sunrises and can be a touch disappointing here since the sun drops below the mountain well before sunset. Similarly with sunrises, as the sun is fairly high in the sky once it is visible above the mountains. Here I would plan on eating just after the sun drops below the mountains.

The Bryce amphitheater faces pretty much due east, so sunsets are not really all that spectacular. Bryce Point is one of the few places that has somewhat of a western aspect where you can view decent sunset. Sunrise at Bryce, however, is beyond description. You have not seen the Bryce Amphitheater until you have watched the sun rise on the hoodoos. Despite the name, Sunset Point in not a good spot for viewing sunsets. It is, however, an excellent location for viewing sunrise (better, IMO than Sunrise Point - if only because you will share the experience with fewer people.)

I haven't been to the Grand canyon at sunrise or sunset, so can't offer any firsthand experience here. I can say that throughout the Southwest in general, the light at sunrise is superior to sunset for photography.
ripit is offline  
May 14th, 2007, 03:07 PM
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Sunset at the North Rim is a big deal for photographers. You will see them setting up quite early. Consider that when making your dinner reservations. I'd go to dinner after dark or very early if I only had one night at the GC.
BayouGal is offline  
May 15th, 2007, 06:40 PM
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Thanks for the planning tips. It's really helpful to have ideas on where to go for photos as well. We are planning on getting up for sunrises. Meals will just be around the lighting. I can't wait!
carolv is offline  

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