Newlyweds hike Cathedral Rock trail for timeless Sedona portraits

Cathedral Rock is one of Sedona, Arizona’s best hiking and photography spots. Newlyweds Nicole and Brian planned bridal portraits the day after their ceremony with White Desert Photography because they didn’t have time on their wedding day for Cathedral Rock’s timeless beauty.

Day after sessions added to wedding packages make the best wedding weekend, because couples can do everything they dream of. (Assuming they make it through the reception!)

From the Cathedral Rock trailhead to the top is 1.5 miles in total and climbs hundreds of feet in elevation, according to the U.S. Forest Service. Most people can do the hike safely but the trail is steep and technical. Hikers must hydrate before and during Cathedral Rock trail.

Like the rest of your wedding weekend, you must be on time to ensure you grab the best wedding, elopement, or engagement photos. But with the right plan, a day-after-session can be as easy, fun and simple as it sounds.

bride and groom on Cathedral Rock cliffs
bride and groom stand in hiking boots on Cathedral Rock

Nicole and Brian’s May Cathedral Rock hike

On the day of their hike, Nicole and Brian brought the perfect gear to complete one of the best hikes in Sedona. The two newlyweds gave great feedback and brought great backpacks, lots of snacks and even more water.

The Cathedral Rock hike can be deceptive for first-timers. People spend a lot of the time climbing up and down the trail on their hands and knees.

Traveling at your own pace is essential. Because remember, you still have a photoshoot once you reach the top!

couple hiking before their bridal photos at Cathedral Rock in Sedona
Groom walks bride out onto ledge at Cathedral Rock

Preparing for one of the best hikes in Sedona

Hikers must bring good shoes and backpacks that can carry their change of clothes. Hiking poles can be useful, but unusable on some parts of the hike.

After meeting in the Cathedral Rock parking lot, Nicole and Brian said they felt tired from dancing the night away at their wedding.

However, once they started moving up the mountain, they quickly woke up. Seeing the stunning vistas of a Cathedral Rock sunset is a sight you will never forget. You’ll be enamored once you reach the top and see the best sight of them all — your new partner looking their best!

Couple kisses on ledge at Cathedral Rock
bride and groom on red rocks

How to get to Cathedral Rock in Sedona

It’s a rock in the great outdoors, how hard can it be to get there?

For a couple who has never been there — hard. Cathedral Rock is viewable from Crescent Moon Ranch, commonly known as Red Rock Crossing park and is great for photos. But many couples make the mistake of trying to reach Cathedral Rock from this location. Do not do this. This will extend your hike by miles.

The City of Sedona has begun to regulate the amount of weekend visitors to Cathedral Rock trail. They do this to protect the well-loved location for generations to come. So talk to your photographer about the shuttle and parking on your date in order to make sure you’re able to reach the destination on time.

If you show up too late, there is a chance that the rangers will prevent you from even getting to the Cathedral Rock trailhead. And missing photos like these is not an option!

wedding ring in flowers
bride holds out dress while groom lifts up her arm standing on ledge at cathedral rock

Victoria Nabours, a Northern Arizona local, founded White Desert Photography in 2018. Since then, the company has bloomed into one of the most in-demand wedding, elopement and engagement photography companies in Sedona. Additionally, her years of expertise has taken her to international wedding destinations and attracted the eye of local and bridal magazines.

Check out her photo galleries, elopement and wedding packages, and inquire today!

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Arianne & Eric

“My husband and I planned a small elopement in Sedona. I found Victoria on Instagram and loved her style. We went through the planning process without a wedding planner which proved to be difficult. Victoria was so helpful in making suggestions and pointing us into the right direction, even though I know she really didn’t have to do that as our photographer. On the day of the wedding, she was prompt in arrival and swift in ensuring that she captured everything. In our evening shoot, we went to 2 locations but looking at our pictures it appears that we went to at least 20. She has an amazing eye for photography and truly captured the spirit of our relationship. The quality is excellent and we could not be happier with how our photos turned out. Victoria is a gem. If you are looking for a down to earth and talented photography, choose White Desert Photography!”

If you are looking for a down to earth and talented photography, choose White Desert Photography!

Karina & Zach

“Totally WORTH IT! Highly recommend!

Victoria is amazing behind the camera. I am usually really camera shy but I was so comfortable. It literally felt like a DREAM! We enjoyed each breath taking moment!”

It literally felt like a DREAM! We enjoyed each breath taking moment!

Izza & Reenan 

“Our wedding was originally March 2020 and she was so great during that difficult time of unexpected rescheduling. When we finally met 2 years after our first email exchange she made us feel so comfortable and at ease.

We would 100% recommend her to anyone and would be thrilled to have her take our photos again.”

We would 100% recommend her to anyone and would be thrilled to have her take our photos again.

Sarah & Aaron

“We hired her for our engagements, bridals and wedding day and we absolutely LOVED having her to capture these special moments. Victoria, is personable yet professional, and by the end of these shoots we felt she was a dear friend.”

by the end of these shoots we felt she was a dear friend.