Saltair is one of the coolest places for family pictures, engagement pictures, senior pictures, basically all forms of photography in Utah. The wide barren expanse, the incredible sunsets, and the reflections are all amazing! You can get a super cool minimalist look, much like what you can get at the Salt Flats (only a little less white) but a LOT less driving. Or you can get an amazing moody sunset and reflection with a totally different feeling. Here’s what you should know before you go:
- The drought in Utah has had a huge impact on the Great Salt Lake. It is now over a mile walk to get to the water. Come prepared with shoes that can withstand a little mud (if you run into it), but you wont want to take them off because the salt content makes the ground really hurt to walk on.
- I used to shoot during the whole walk to the water, but it’s just too far now. I shoot near the parking lot now for the minimalist background look, and then keep my camera put away until we get kind of close to the water. If you shoot on the way, your clients will likely give up before you get there, it’s just too far.
- Wear bug spray, and never go after it’s been 70 degrees three days in a row but before it’s been 90 degrees three days in a row. I made that mistake once, and I’ll never make it again. I got about 100 no-see-em, gnat, and mosquito bites. The water is so far away now though, if you stay near the parking lot there are literally no bugs. They gradually get worse toward the water.
- Don’t start too early, the light is really harsh when the sun is high there, but also leave enough time for the 20-ish minute walk to the water.
- Bring wipes, and towel, and a small bucket of water, so you don’t have to ride home with sandy feet (if you plan to wade in the water).
This sounds like a lot, but if you come prepared (and if you properly inform your clients), there are plenty of people that still want to shoot there. The sunsets and glassy-water reflections are unlike anywhere else. Or some clients may choose to stick with the minimalist backdrop and skip the water all together. Either way, it’s an awesome spot.
Utah Family Photographer
Salt Lake City, Park City, Utah County Photographer