An elopement is a simple, intimate ceremony that has been around since the 1800s. The Rocky Mountains are one of the most popular destinations for elopements in the United States! This blog post will answer all of your questions about Rocky Mountain Elopements by outlining the steps you need to take to make sure your Rocky Mountain Elopement is perfect.
When planning your Rocky Mountain Elopement, there are a few things you will need to take into account.
STEP ONE – PICK A DATE
First, you will need to decide on a date. The best time of year for elopements in the Rocky Mountains is during late September through early October when the aspens turn yellow and the weather is still pleasant.
We did it at the very end of the season on October, 31st. We lucked out and had some sunshine, and some snow on the same day! It was pretty cold when the sun was behind the clouds especially with the wind gusts.
You could do it prior to September in the summer time, but you might have a day that is really hot so make sure you choose a location with some shade so you can cool off.
STEP TWO – CHOOSE A LOCATION
Second, you will need to decide on a location. Rocky Mountain National Park offers some of the most beautiful locations for elopements in the United States! You could also consider other locations such as Estes Park or Vail. Whatever location you choose make sure you get the proper permits if needed. Your photographer (if you have one) should also have a permit.
There are spots in the Rockies that are more touristy like the National and State Parks, Estes Park, Vail, and Aspen. You also have the option to choose a more remote destination that requires some hiking. If you choose to go remote, make sure to bring the proper hiking equipment and to train before you come if you are not already used to the elevation.
We chose Rocky Mountain National Park along Bear Lake Road and around Bear Lake. We also went to the nearby Stanley Hotel to take some pictures, and then signed our marriage certificate by the Estes Park sign in Estes Park, CO. We were able to get everything done is about 5 hours.
STEP THREE – MARRIAGE LICENSE
Third, you will need to get a marriage license. You can do this in any state, but we recommend doing it in the state you will be getting married in.
STEP FOUR – WHO WILL OFFICIATE?
Fourth, you will need to decide on who is going to officiate your wedding. This could be a friend or family member, or if you are looking for something more formal you could hire an officiant. Colorado is an awesome state for an elopement because the paperwork is easy to file, cheap to file, and you are not required to have a witness. That means you and your lover can be completely by yourselves and not need to hire an officiant!
STEP FIVE – WEDDING RINGS
Fifth, you will need to purchase wedding rings if you don’t have them already. This can be a fun task and it’s always nice to personalize your rings! You could also consider getting creative with your rings and having something unique made for you.
STEP SIX – PICTURES
Sixth, you will need to hire a photographer if you don’t already have one. We used Western Pine Photography for our pictures. You could bring a local photographer with you on your trip but I would recommend using one with experience in the mountains. Colorado has an array of talented photographers so it shouldn’t be a problem finding someone perfect for you!
A tip for finding your elopement photographer is to look at their portfolio and see which photography style you connect with most. Each photographer will have a slightly different style or vibe. Pick on that you like 🙂
STEP SEVEN – WEDDING VOWS
Seventh, you will need wedding vows. You could write these yourself or use some standard wedding vows. We wrote ours down in the notes app in our phones to make sure they were with us on the special day!
STEP EIGHT – LODGING
Finding the perfect place to stay after your elopement is not hard in the Rockies! There are plenty of amazing Airbnb rentals and small cozy lodges. Whether you are looking for an intimate room in the mountains with a hot tub, an elegant spa day in the hot springs, or a party night-Colorado has you covered!
A Rocky Mountain Elopement is an amazing way to celebrate your love and the Rocky Mountains are a beautiful place for such a celebration!