exploring tibble fork resevoir, utah!

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do you ever feel like you grew up not really loving your home town or state, and that only after you leave for a long time do you realize that you took it all for granted? that you never really appreciated everything it was offering you until all these years later? that’s how i feel whenever i visit utah and go on a hike by a waterfall or drive up into the mountains on a little road through a forest of pines or aspens… my family camped regularly in the beautiful outdoors while i was growing up, and our backyard was literally a stunning mountainside, but somehow i usually just always complained whenever we went on a hike or out to explore when i was little. visiting it all now, i wonder just how much i missed out on, by not embracing the beauty around me and getting to know the state of utah better.

now whenever we go back to visit family, i can’t stop admiring those beautiful mountain landscapes and i find myself constantly saying, “KIDS! look at this!” “look at those!” “do you see the deer?!” “isn’t it beautiful?!” it’s such a contrast to our life in new york city, it’s fun to watch my kids step in and explore it all. these kinds of trips are my favorite to bring a camera along for, to capture these moments and unbelievable views around us to help me remember it all and tuck it away into my memory for later.

while exploring tibble fork canyon one afternoon, i brought along our Canon EOS Rebel T7i since we’ve been using it more this fall in partnership with Canon. the Canon EOS Rebel T7i did a great job soaking up all the rich colors on the water, the trees, and mountains. being someone who has played around with several fancy cameras and lenses over the years, i am always impressed at how this camera’s 24.2 Megapixel CMOS (APS-C) sensor captures crisp, colorful photos with so much detail and vibrancy. we shoot in a large RAW file format on our Canon, which also helps capture as much of that image information as possible. the camera held up really well in low light as the light began to fade during sunset. those are some of my favorite times to take pictures outside and i love how the images turned out during this trip to utah.

for those interested in specific camera settings, the image above was taken with an ISO at 100, 18MM F7.1 1/200SEC. more EXIF data below…


tibble fork, are you kidding me?! and how is this place only about an hour drive from my childhood home and somehow i’d never been?! my little sister took her bridal photos here a few years ago and ever since it’s been on my list of “must go as soon as possible” places to see! so glad we finally made it happen!


it’s always so fun to watch my older kids begin to really head out and explore a new place when we travel. they got rather comfortable on this trip heading out of the home and playing in my parents front and back yards on their own, which josh and i have really wanted them to feel confident in doing since it’s not something they really get to do in the city (the play alone outside part). city life is so good to us, but getting out into the great outdoors with no other people around is also really wonderful for the soul. i’m so glad they got to experience some of that this trip.


still raving about this swivel screen on this Rebel T7i since it allows for all the selfies this mama desires. since this is an entry-level DSLR camera (although i promise when you look at your photos afterwards you don’t feel like it’s an entry level camera), another plus is its rather compact and lightweight size which makes holding it or flipping it around for selfies very easy.


also, gotta love a kit lens that can do things like THIS with the right aperture. my settings here for those interested was ISO at 400 43MM F5.0 1/1000 SEC.


baby girls’ first time in beautiful utah! between the sights and the fist gnawing, i think they had a good time. :)


another fun detail shot with my camera settings at ISO400 41MM F5.0 1/250SEC.


samson, tossing rocks into the water! can you see the rock in the middle of the air?


i wasn’t sure if any of the fall foliage would still be around or if we’d have already missed it during our time in utah, but fortunately a lot of the trees still had such pretty colors to display! seeing it against the snowy mountains was kind of incredible. my settings here were ISO at 100 18MM F10 1/160SEC.

and gosh, those utah sunsets! sure do love them. maybe not as much as my skyscraper sunsets, but they are definitely up there! josh took these photos and his camera settings were ISO at 400 55MM F5.6 1/320 SEC.


until next time, beautiful utah! and gosh, tibble fork canyon, i plan to see you again for sure. thank you to Canon for sponsoring this blog post! all images in this post were taken with their newest Canon EOS Rebel T7i and the 18-55mm IS STM lens.

  1. Sandra Luz

    Love the pictures of you and Eleanor!! They’re all beautiful shots.

  2. Rachel

    Beautiful shots. Also, I LOVE your sweater. Do you mind sharing where you got it? Thanks for the uplifting blog each post (yours is literally the only blog I’ve followed for years now)

  3. brittany

    these are seriously gorgeous shots!

    xo, brittany
    gift guide for babies & toddlers on my blog today!

  4. Rena

    It is wonderful you finally learned to love Utah as I think it is a dream there! Fortunately I always loved my home area Bavaria in Germany and I still do :) Thanks for sharing the super cute and happy pictures!
    xx from Bavaria/Germany, Rena

  5. chrissi

    the picture with your baby girls is just too cute. “a handful babies”, i wish i can take picture like this myself at some point.

  6. tracy

    Gorgeous! And where did you get that sweater?!

  7. How amazingly gorgeous is that lake with the trees? Definitely adding Utah to my bucket list. Such gorgeous photos!

    Sara xo

  8. Michelle

    Hey guys, this will probably seem nit-picky so I’m actually totally fine with you not letting it past moderation… While your photos were taken at Tibble Fork Resevoir (some of my favorite portraits of my family have been taken here too…it checks all the boxes for a “nature” session), you were in American Fork Canyon. I know, I know…go ahead and eyeroll…I wouldn’t blame you. But, for those of us who do call Utah home, and this canyon in particular, it hurts a bit to see it so vastly mislabeled. Kind of like me saying Harlem or Morningside Heights is the same as UWS. Again, please don’t put the comment through…but maybe just edit the location (either Tibble Fork Resevoir OR American Fork Canyon…not a slapdash combo of the two). Please and Thanks!

    Also, those pics are top notch! Great camera and great execution with lenses/settings/etc.

    • josh

      You’re so right, Michelle! Great point.

  9. Lauren

    My gosh Eleanor looks like a teenager!