Rocky Mountain National Park Engagement Photographer
I love being a Rocky Mountain National Park engagement photographer. This place is a dream! Here I’ll walk you through all the amazing places to have your engagement session in Rocky Mountain National Park. There’s so much more here than just Dream Lake! This huge national park is the crown jewel of Colorado’s National Parks. Be prepared with your timed entry ticket for most hours between 8am and 5pm during the busy spring through fall season.
Looking to elope in Rocky Mountain National Park instead?
I specialize in crafting the perfect elopement day for your unique brand of weirdness. Check out my guide on where to elope in Rocky Mountain National Park to learn all about the 12 designated wedding sites. Please follow the rules in this park and remember to Leave No Trace!
3M Curve in Rocky Mountain National Park
This is one of the easiest to access locations for engagement photos with mountain views in Rocky Mountain. However, you have to know where it is because there’s no signage for “3M curve” anywhere in the park. In fact it isn’t even marked on maps. Located between the Beaver Meadows entrance and the Trail Ridge Road junction, look out for this spot on your left just after the Bear Lake road turn off. A large rock formation frames the big view of Long’s Peak and Moraine Park below. This is a great place for engagement photos in every season.
West Horseshoe Park in Rocky Mountain National Park
West horseshoe park is one of my favorite locations in Rocky Mountain National Park for engagement photos. It’s easy to access from the Fall River entrance because it is close to Estes Park. And, because there aren’t any trails that begin here, the small parking lot isn’t usually cramped. The views across horseshoe park have those big mountain peaks you desire. The terrain is rock here, so heels aren’t advised.
Moraine Park in Rocky Mountain NP
Moraine Park is a large meadow that is a popular place for both Rocky Mountain National Park Engagement Photos and for large herds of elk! No joke, this meadow is closed in the fall due to the Elk rut. But in the spring, summer and winter, it’s a fabulous location for your engagement photos.
Trail Ridge Road Engagement Photographer
This alpine area is only open in Summer months from July to September, sometimes earlier or later depending on snowfall. The road travels up over the fragile tundra, so it is extra important to be careful where you step. The epic views afforded from this area are like nowhere else in the state of Colorado, making it a top choice. It is a long winding drive from Estes Park, and it can be windy and very cold here. But it’s worth it! Now, there are a dozen stop offs along this road so its important to know which one(s) you’ll be visiting with your Rocky Mountain National Park engagement photographer, as there is no cell service in this remote location.
Alluvial Fan in Rocky Mountain National Park
This is an easy to access spot where a large river flows over a rocky bed, tumbling for a long time before reaching a meadow. It’s sortof a waterfall.. but not really. A quaint bridge crosses the river here, and it’s a popular place for families with kids. On summer afternoons, the light falls just right in this area for super flattering portraits. The shady area nearby is the best spot in the park if you want forest vibes. And it’s a great spot for fall color because of the abundant aspen trees that turn yellow in late September. I prefer this spot to the nearby Sheep Lakes, which doesn’t allow folks to walk in the meadow.
Rocky Mountain Waterfall Engagement Photographer
Tucked in the east inlet trail on the West side of Rocky Mountain National Park is the beautiful Adams Falls. This is a short hike that most anyone can do. This is a great place for Rocky Mountain National Park engagement photos if you don’t mind a longer drive from Denver and really want a waterfall. See Brittany and Brian’s Adams Falls engagement photos here. Other waterfalls in Rocky Mountain national park are Copeland Falls & Ouzel Falls near the wild basin entrance, and Alberta Falls just southeast of Bear Lake.
Rocky Mountain National Park Lakes
This national park is absolutely filled to the brim with gorgeous alpine lakes. Access varies: There are drive-right up spots like Sprague Lake, Bear Lake and Lily Lake. Other lakes require short hikes like Dream, Emerald, Haiyaha, Gem Lake, Fern Lake and Cub Lake. Difficult hikes have big payoff and bring you to Sky Pond, Chasm Lake, Lake Helene, and more. Lakes provide a focal element to your engagement photos and are great for photographers to get creative compositions. They are also useful for having a clear area from which to see the dramatic mountain peaks!
Dream Lake Engagement Photographer
This is the quintessential engagement photo location in Rocky Mountain National Park, maybe all of Colorado! This is the busiest hike in the park, and a popular spot to plan a proposal. For this reason, and because Hallett peak faces east, the best time for engagement photos at Dream Lake is at sunrise. You won’t regret the early wake up call for a moment of peace at the shore. Being a dream lake engagement photographer means being prepared: be sure to get your Bear Lake Corridor timed entry tickets as this hike starts from the Bear Lake Trailhead. See a sunrise dream lake engagement session here.
Emerald Lake in Rocky Mountain National Park Engagement Photographer
Just beyond the spectacular Dream Lake, the hike continues to Emerald Lake. This lake is a jewel for sure, as the clear water often appears greenish which contrasts with the mountains that surround it. On a clear summer’s day, it’s both a classic and dramatic engagement photo location in rocky mountain national park. I love the stillness of this lake that gives me a mirror reflection in my photos. Watch out for ground squirrels, chipmunks, marmots and pika at this location! See an Emerald Lake Engagement Session here.
Lake Haiyaha Photographer
In the summer of 2022, a large rockslide occurred in the backcountry of Rocky Mountain national park. The granite mountain rock got pounded to fine sand and soon washed down with the rains into Lake Haiyaha. This turned the otherwise ordinary lake turquoise-green! If you are looking for a unique engagement photo location in Rocky Mountain National Park, this could be the hike for you, just turn left at Dream Lake. Lake Haiyaha is lined with massive boulders that make accessing the shore difficult, so be very careful and sure-footed when you have your engagement photos here.
Bear Lake Photos – Rocky Mountain National Park
This popular lake has a mostly-flat trail all the way around it. There is a mountain view out towards Long’s Peak from the northeast shore. A rocky cliff at the western edge of the lake is a fun focal point too. In the winter, this lake freezes over completely, so you can walk out on it. However, it’s often very windy and cold at this lake in the winter, so be warned!
Sprague Lake Engagement Photographer
Sprague Lake is located along the Bear Lake Corridor in Rocky Mountain National Park. During peak season in the summer and fall, that means you will need to grab the timed entry ticket for Bear Lake Corridor to access this location. But don’t let that stop you from this great engagement session location! In my opinion Sprague Lake is the easiest lake to access for those with mobility restrictions. It’s absolutely beautiful at sunrise as the alpenglow travels down Squaretop mountain. Watch out for moose, elk and mink along the edge of this lake! See an Engagement session at Sprague Lake.
Gem Lake in Rocky Mountain NP
This underrated lake looks like nowhere else! A 3.2 mile hike up from the Lumpy Ridge trailhead is filled with views of Long’s Peak. The Lumpy ridge trailhead is outside of the main area of the park and is located just north of Estes Park. The lake itself hangs in a valley with a dramatic rock wall on one side. The views from up there are fabulous if you’re looking for adventure and up for a rock scramble! Chipmunks are abundant at this lake, so watch your snacks like a hawk!
Lily Lake in Rocky Mountain National Park
Lily Lake is a quiet pond that is located just south of Estes Park. You can drive right up to the lake and it’s one of the few places in Rocky Mountain National Park where dogs are allowed. This lake has a small parking lot, so coming on a weekday will definitely help you find a spot. I think fall is the best time of year for engagement photos at Lily Lake, and sunsets here are beautiful! A boardwalk lines the south edge of Lily Lake, while the North side offers adventurous couples the chance to scramble up to the top of a rocky viewpoint. See a Lily Lake engagement here.
Ready to get amazing Rocky Mountain National Park engagement photos for yourself? Reach out and I’ll help you choose the right location for you!