Where to Elope in Colorado
Colorado has four iconic national parks, but hundreds of other trails, mountains, valleys and lakes. You can and should plan your elopement here with stunning scenery. There is no shortage of amazing spots to elope in Colorado in every season. Summer days bring bright wildflowers to the highest mountain passes while fall aspens turn the hills gold. Winter brings some accessibility challenges, but there are still great places that don’t (or do!) require snowshoes. Spring is very unpredictable. For those who like rolling the dice between a sunny 70 degrees and a white out blizzard, April & May are great months for you! All kidding aside, let’s explore some of the ins and outs of where to elope in Colorado and some of the incredible photos I can take for you!
Location is perhaps the most important thing to consider when you’re planning a Colorado elopement – and there are a lot of factors to consider. Everyone has a different idea of the “perfect” spot, and everyone’s elopement plans are different. Some folks choose to elope just the two of them, and some folks get together with 20 close family and friends. Many locations have parking restrictions or size limitations that will narrow down your options. Some require a hike or 4WD to access, some are seasonal or only recommended on weekdays.
Too Many Choices?
And then there’s the choice of views; lakes, peaks, islands, canyons, caves, waterfalls, desert formations or aspen groves? There are so many choices, it can be overwhelming if you don’t know where to look. As your Colorado elopement guide & photographer, I can help choose a spot that suits your dreams & goals, and then connect you to local accommodation, florists, or other special touches you’d like to include.
Here’s my map of where to elope in Colorado. 70+ locations and growing! 90% of these have less than a five mile hike. Want to make it interactive so you can see more about each spot? Get in touch!
This map is like a virtual tour of all of Colorado with color photos I’ve taken of each place. So you can see all the great spots without leaving your living room. If you’re planning from afar, this is a visual key to picking out the elopement spot that works for you. Details like what seasons and time of day are best for each location are included. It will help you plan your activities, accommodations, and your day’s itinerary. Lastly, it’s easy to have a great backup location picked out with this map in front of you. Having that Plan B in your back pocket will keep your planning stress-free!
Colorado Adventurers Welcome
Colorado is a popular state for hikers and outdoor enthusiasts, and many areas can become busy during peak season, afternoons and weekends. If privacy and exclusivity is important to you, let me help! I can advise you about which spots will work for you at certain times. As eloping becomes more popular in the age of COVID-19 and having large gatherings becomes more impractical, many couples choose to keep things simple and have the adventurous marriage of their dreams here in Colorado. The best compromise is to share the incredible photos with your loved ones afterwards, and I promise they will feel like they were there. More ideas on including your family in your elopement here.
How to Get Married in Colorado
Colorado is a self-solemnizing state, which means you can marry your partner without an officiant. Aka.. your elopement ceremony can be as intimate as you like because you can sign your own marriage license and be legally married! You can have a friend officiate without that person being ordained by any service, since you’ll be signing your own marriage license anyway. My husband and I did this when we got married, and we loved it! Also, we signed literally on our friend’s backs since we didn’t have a table. Thanks, guys!
Colorado elopement permits?
While some areas of Colorado require permits for elopements and other small gatherings & events, others are more flexible. However, ALL areas of Colorado should be treated with Leave No Trace principles. That means no confetti or rice. A leaf toss is a great alternative! Basically, leave the land as you found it. Many areas need advance notice, so it’s best to plan your elopement 30 days to 6 months in advance. The Great Sand Dunes, Black Canyon of the Gunnison, The Maroon Bells, and RMNP are some of the more popular areas that require a permit, but many others do as well, and it is harder to find out what permit is needed! These permits vary in cost from free to $300, which is still a whole lot cheaper than an entire wedding venue! I will help you find and apply for the right permit based on your location needs 🙂
Where to Elope Close to Denver
Believe it or not, there are tons of great spots to elope close to Denver & Boulder while still getting that surrounded-by-nature feeling! The well known spots are Sunrise Amphitheater, Golden Gate Canyon State Park, and Roxborough State Park, and these places are amazing! I also know of some spots on Flagstaff, Lookout, and Genesee mountains, three different canyons, some cool spots in Conifer that have unique pavilions, and one pavilion in Bear Creek that costs just $80 to rent for the day! The options on where to elope in Colorado are almost overwhelming.
High Mountain Pass Elopements
If you want big panoramic views above the tree line, consider eloping on a Colorado mountain pass. Some of these passes have paved road access year round, but others are seasonal and are only open June-September. I’ve got a big list and can help you find the pass and the access that’s right for you. The payoff for these high elevation elopement spots is huge, as you can often be completely alone with miles and miles of epic vistas and views of the rockies and the continental divide. If you want a truly iconic Colorado Elopement – this is the way to go!!
Lakes, Rivers & Waterfall Elopement Locations
Spread across the entire state, there are pockets of lakes, raging rivers and epic waterfalls everywhere. Many lake locations require a hike, but these vary in length and adventurousness, so there is always something that suits you! It’s easy to see why these sparkling lakes and glacial cols have a lot of draw. Can you imagine exchanging vows with your person in front of a huge waterfall, or on the edge of a lake at dawn, or rowing a canoe out to an island?
I hope you’ve enjoyed my guide of where to elope in Colorado, whether you live here already or are dreaming about starting your marriage adventure here. If you have questions about any of these locations or are ready to start the conversation about making me your Colorado Elopement Photographer and guide, don’t hesitate to get in touch! I’d love to help dream up, plan, and put the logistics in place so you get to just show up and have the time of your life!
I’m a nomadic and colorful elopement photographer with an obsession for mountains, hiking, and my cats. My photography style emphasizes the epic landscape of your dreams and the authentic moments that make you two.. well, you two! I love my job and my nature-loving clients. Colorado is vast, diverse, and full of breathtaking sights. Maybe I’ll see you there!
I offer full day, 1.5 day and 2 day elopement photography in National Parks and the wild lands outside of them. See my pricing and package details here. I would love to chat with you and help see if an elopement with me is what you’ve been dreaming of. No matter which of the horseshoe bend elopement locations speak to you, don’t hesitate to get in touch below!
CONTACT ME. IT’S NO BIGGIE.
I can’t wait to hear from you!
More Specific Colorado Elopement Location Guides:
Rocky Mountain National Park Elopement Guide
Great Sand Dunes Elopement Guide
Black Canyon of the Gunnison Elopement Guide
Colorado National Monument Elopement Guide
Boulder, Colorado Elopement Guide
Aspen, Colorado Elopement Guide
Summit County Elopement Guide
Mt. Evans Elopement Guide
Telluride Elopement Guide
Ouray Elopement Guide
Garden of the Gods Elopement Locations
Maroon Bells Elopement Guide