If you are going to keep shooting photographs like this, you should definitely be shooting RAW! That is a great image.
When shooting jpeg, which I sometimes do, my first step is to make an 8 bit tiff copy of the jpeg. That way I do not have to do anything further with the jpeg and it can be kept safe. Any further work on the image is done on the tiff.
RAW gives you infinitely more data to work with, though, and many more options if the image needs work.
If you are serious about your photography it would be well worth spending the time to learn how to work with RAW...