Arizona Photographer, Annette Ambrose Photography, breaks down her resources for a Bell Rock Sedona Engagement Session.

Bell Rock Sedona Engagement Session | Inspiration for a Sedona Photoshoot


HEY - I'm Annette

An Arizona based Wedding, Elopement & Couple's Photographer. I am here for the wild, messy and imperfect moments. Let me help you create an experience that will last a lifetime.


May 10, 2023

I bet you didn’t know Bell Rock is more than just a stunning photo location, it’s actually one of Sedona’s most known Vortex Meditation sites! Meaning, other than just being a fantastic spot for engagement sessions it also is the best for serenity. 

Bell Rock is referred to as an Upflow area (meaning “masculine”) that is best for serenity and solving problems from a higher (spiritual) perspective. While Cathedral Rock is also a vortex but referred to as an up-flow “feminine” vortex that is reported to be the strongest in the creek area.

Why am I spewing all these fun facts for you?

WELL! That’s because it just shows how Bell Rock Sedona is the perfect engagement session location because of its higher mix of feminine and masculine energy. And that is exactly the kind of energy we captured for Lexi and Chris all the way from New York to Bell Rock. 

What brings two New Yorkers to the beauty of Bell Rock? Lexi’s mom bought their engagement session as a gift for them two! Lexi’s uncle has a place in Tucson so Lexi has been to Arizona quite a few times. Lexi has always had a special spot for Sedona and wanted to take Chris to show him the magic. 

So let’s get into this moment! 

Arizona Photographer, Annette Ambrose Photography, breaks down her resources for a Bell Rock Sedona Engagement Session.

A Little BTS: The Couple’s Love Story

Lexi and Chris met during their sophomore year at college away in Albany, New York. Funny enough, Chris just so happened to live 2 miles from both Lexi’s grandparents back home! Not only this, but Lexi always carried a St. Christopher medal with her so it feels like it was fate that she and Chris met! Since that sophomore year at college, they’ve dated for 7 years. 

Chris popped the question in a sunflower field on July ‘22! Imagine being surrounded by all those gorgeous sunflowers?!

Fact about St. Christopher: He is the Travel Saint, so he protects you while you are traveling. 

How Their Bell Rock Sedona Engagement Went 

During this Bell Rock adventure engagement session, we managed to go to two different locations that were right by each other. Lexi started out in a beaded Vintage Flapper Style dress with the fringe at the bottom for Cathedral Rock. It was perfect! After snapping some shots, Lexi and Chris did an outfit change and we headed over to Bell Rock for another spot! You have to see the silk white dress with a low back Lexi wore for this! 

My favorite reason why I love Cathedral Rock is that, at the bottom of the hike, there is always a shaded area for a couple of hours before sunset. It’s a great lighting spot for photographers to capture couples in the desert-high sun! 

Bell Rock and Cathedral Rock Trail

So let me just quickly break down the hiking trails! The Bell Rock Trail loop is about a 3.9-mile out-and-back trail. Now that can sound daunting, but you don’t have to “hike” far in to get some great photos. Bell Rock is an easy location for couples who are not wanting to do a lot of hiking but still get those epic nature shots. 

Also, Cathedral Rock is about 1.2 miles and links up and back–which is considered a moderate hiking level. The same goes for Cathedral Rock, you don’t have to hike far in to get to spots where to take photos. For these reasons, Bell Rock and Cathedral Rock are one of my favorite locations with a wide view of all of Sedona to take couples. 

And if you are afraid of heights and don’t want to hike the rest of the way up to Cathedral Rock…don’t worry! I have the perfect location right next door! 

Fun Fact: Cathedral Rock just went under a renovation this Winter in 2023. There were stairs added on the climb up to the top making it a little better for the climb up for people. 

An added bonus to this location is that if couples opt to have two outfit changes, there are restrooms at both parking lots which make it nice and easy to change!

Adventure Bell Rock Sedona Engagements Sessions: What to Plan For

One question I always ask my clients before we pick a location in Sedona is: “Do you want to hike at all? How do you deal with heights? Are you okay with hiking in the heat?”. These questions are very crucial because a hike to the top of Bell Rock is not an easy hike–especially having to do it in nice, formal clothes with your makeup all done up to get your pictures taken.

I always provide the option to have two outfit changes during our time together. Usually, couples opt for a casual and a more dressy option given the location and their personal style. 

However, picking out outfits for Sedona can be a little bit more tricky than most sessions. One thing you have to be mindful about is colors and patterns. Sedona already has a busy, red/orangey backdrop so sticking to solids is always key! Especially if they’re complimentary solid colors.

For Example: If one partner is in a solid, then I recommend the other to be in a solid too. If one partner is in a darker color, I recommend the other partner to be in a lighter color to complement each other. 

Who would have thought that picking out an outfit would be like this, but with my years of experience this works! Don’t stress too much in looking for an outfit, I always tell my clients not to hesitate to send me pictures of what they are thinking and I can easily help you pick.


  • Make sure to wear good hiking shoes
  • bring a pair of shoes to change into when we get to the location 
  • Sunscreen 
  • A backpack
  • A dry towel–just in case for sweating 
  • Extra Makeup or Brushes (really anything to touch up) 
  • A shot of Tequila (haha!) or anything to calm your nerves 


I highly recommend making a date out of your engagement session and going out to dinner afterward! It would be such a beautiful moment to pass up on. So here are some of my favorite restaurants that are near Bell Rock in Oak Creek:

Lastly, one last freebie from my experience for you is to always check ahead when the restaurants are open or when they close. Sedona tends to be a slower pace town and they do things at their own speed and time. One thing about Sedona, everything usually closes before 8. 

Adventure Bell Rock Sedona Engagement Sessions are ABSOLUTELY my favorite! I have a Sedona location guide for more locations I send to my clients after booking. I have spent A LOT of time exploring Sedona and trust me when I say, you are in good hands with me as your guide! 


If you are interested in other hikes in Sedona for a session, check out these locations here:

Merry-Go-Round Rock

Lover’s Knoll

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HEY - I'm Annette!

An Arizona based Wedding, Elopement & Couple's Photographer. I am here for the wild, messy and imperfect moments. Let me help you create an experience that will last a lifetime.


Annette Ambrose

Weddings, Elopements, & COUPLES