As one of the best states for gorgeous mountain scenery, Colorado is ideal for a mountain elopement. In this article, I’m sharing everything you need to know about having the perfect Colorado mountain elopement.
As a Colorado elopement photographer and local, I love working with couples dreaming of an authentic and incredible wedding experience. Not only is Colorado beautiful, but there are endless options, and it’s one of the easiest places to legally marry.
Let’s look at how to elope in the mountains, incredible locations, and tips for planning your elopement.
You can absolutely get married in the Colorado mountains. With so many incredible mountain locations and the ability to legally marry yourselves, it’s almost too easy!
Colorado has it all, whether you want to get married on a mountaintop, in front of the mountains, or surrounded by diverse landscapes.
You can also self-solemnize in Colorado, so you don’t have to have any witnesses or an officiant to legally tie the knot.
Whether you’re looking for a quaint mountain town, an adventurous experience, or an intimate wedding venue, there’s something for any couple dreaming of a Colorado mountain elopement.
Here’s a rundown of my favorite places to elope in the mountains. I’ll share more details and resources for each one below.
Location: Ward, Colorado, about 1.5 hours from Denver
The Brainard Lake Recreation Area has become one of my all-time favorite elopement locations. High mountain peaks, gorgeous lakes, and alpine forests surround this stunning area.
I love capturing elopements at Lake Isabelle and Brainard Lake, both in the recreation area and offering picture-perfect scenery.
Location: Gunnison County, Colorado
Crested Butte is the perfect location if you’re dreaming of eloping in a quaint Colorado mountain town.
I loved Crested Butte’s never-ending mountain views and secluded vibe. There are so many amazing locations throughout Crested Butte for your elopement, it’s easy to get away from crowds and have an intimate experience with your love.
Whether you’re hoping for an adventurous elopement day or want to stick around for a fun honeymoon, Crested Butte has many activities – from skiing and hiking to camping and kayaking.
Location: Southwestern Colorado
Whether you’re looking for a laid-back Colorado mountain elopement experience or something more adventurous, the San Juan Mountains have it all.
I’ve worked with several elopement couples in this area and love how unique their weddings were!
There are a few gorgeous areas throughout the San Juan Mountains to elope:
Location: Northern Colorado
Rocky Mountain National Park is easily one of the best Colorado elopement locations. It’s massive at over 400 square miles, with endless beautiful backdrops and massive mountain peaks.
Whether you enjoy hiking, chasing waterfalls, or hanging out with wildlife, there’s so much for any couple to enjoy at Rocky Mountain National Park. The best part? There are countless photo ops and locations for your wedding portraits.
Location: Slightly north of Denver, Colorado
Boulder is the ideal place to elope in the mountains if you’re looking for city life, too. It’s surrounded by the Rocky Mountains and Flatirons for stunning mountain scenery. The food and drink scene is also incredible, with many opportunities to celebrate your special day.
A couple of elopement locations I love in Boulder are Lost Gulch Overlook and Chautauqua Park.
Lost Gulch Overlook is just outside the city, where you can take a relatively easy hike to a breathtaking lookout point with amazing mountain views, especially at sunset! Chautauqua Park is also beautiful and showcases gorgeous wildflowers during summer.
Colorado is filled with magical mountain locations, and I love working with couples looking for an intimate experience. If you’re interested in eloping off the beaten path in Colorado, contact Among the Pines Photography (that’s me!) to find your perfect location.
A Colorado elopement can cost anywhere from $1,000 to $10,000. Elopement costs vary, depending on elopement locations, time of year, length of your trip, and vendors. The best part about eloping in Colorado is that you can make it fit almost any budget.
If you’re working with a budget, there are free places to elope in Colorado, including some locations like Loveland Pass.
To make your elopement dreams a reality, knowing how to elope in Colorado is important.
Here are some of my best tips for planning an elopement:
I usually recommend booking your photographer early in your planning process because an elopement photographer can also help you plan.
Not only do I capture all the special moments of an elopement day, but I also help couples find the perfect location, choose vendors, and decide what to wear.
With so many options, deciding when and where to elope is often the most challenging aspect.
Here are some tips for choosing when and where to tie the knot:
Once you have your location and timeline figured out, it’s time to book your travel.
If you’re flying, there are several large airports in Colorado, including Denver International Airport (DEN), Durango–La Plata County Airport (DRO), and Colorado Springs Airport (COS).
Colorado is one of the easiest states to get married. Simply go to a Colorado County Clerk’s Office and apply for your license. If you’re widowed or divorced, you’ll need to provide information regarding this.
After you apply for your license, you can get married as soon as that same day.
You also don’t need a witness or officiant to marry in Colorado. Some couples I work with even have their dog witness for them!
What you wear can make or break your Colorado mountain elopement experience.
Comfort is key, especially if you’re having an adventure elopement. Be mindful of the area you’re exploring and the weather. It’s best to dress for comfort and bring a change of clothes for your ceremony and pictures.
You can always ask your photographer for clothing advice based on your elopement location and the time. I share a Pinterest outfit inspiration board with couples I work with to help them plan their outfits.
The best part of all is enjoying your elopement experience! Elopements are most memorable when you stay authentic to what you and your partner love most and incorporate meaningful moments.
Your elopement experience can be as simple or elaborate as you’d like. On my elopement day, my husband and I enjoyed a few of our favorite things – a sunrise hike, having coffee, and hammocking.
Here are a few other ideas for enjoying your elopement day:
I hope this Colorado mountain elopement guide inspired you to plan your dream day. If you’d like help making your elopement experience perfect, I’m here for you!
Among the Pines Photography (aka me!) helps adventurous couples every step of the way, from planning your big day to capturing all the special moments.
CHLOE + CONNER
Brooke is professional, prepared, and provides all the peace of mind that a bride needs on her wedding day. Because of our conversations leading up to the day, I had no doubt that she would capture every important moment and more. Throughout the day, she was present and helpful, but never overbearing or controlling. She beautifully captured the moments that happened naturally & her experience allowed for insight and ideas that I wouldn't have thought to ask for but that I'll now cherish forever! She is flexible, understanding, and patient, and looking back, we can't imagine our day without her. If you are looking for someone to capture your wedding day, or just any day, Brooke is your girl. She goes above and beyond to serve her clients, and she is absolutely gifted at what she does.
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Linden + Brent
In the end, her creativity and our happiness totally shine through in every single photo. Brooke made both of us feel so at ease, from our individual sessions before we had our first look, to strolling through downtown Ouray, to our ceremony and in the scenic spots we visited afterwards. Her talent is beyond compare and we are absolutely thrilled with our gallery of photos we will treasure forever. We give Brooke our highest recommendation and can’t wait to work with her again!
"Throughout the entire planning process, Brooke was honest and flexible, and made it clear that her goal was for us to be 100% happy."
Emily + Nick
Brooke is hands down the most talented photographer I have ever met in my entire life. I gave her my inspiration and she took it and made it into something entirely unique and beautiful. Brooke was able to work with my budget and offer me options. Along with all of this, she was always there to communicate with me from ideas to concerns. The day of never goes as planned, she was thrown curveball after curveball and dodged them all with ease. The photos we received memorialized the best day of our lives and we are forever grateful for the beautiful artwork she created.
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ERICA & ZACH
Brooke was booked to do our wedding June 6th. However, the virus hit and we were afraid we wouldn’t be able to have our wedding in June so we decided to go ahead and get married with just our parents there. I called Brooke and told her our plans and literally we were getting married in a week and she was so quick to say yes and capture our day for us. She helped make our day very special. She was super fun and made Zach and I feel very comfortable. I got my pictures back and I felt so overjoyed to see the happiness and love I felt on that day. Even though we didn’t have our wedding like we planned, it was still very special and Brooke was a big hand in that. She truly captured some very special memories that I will have for the rest of my life.
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Our wedding was in Kentucky in September. Brooke not only traveled for us but made a custom package for us because we had a unique situation. She took pictures the day before, and just seemed to be in the right place at the right time. She met with me before the wedding and we communicated a few times up to the wedding about my specific requests, and she hit the nail on the head. I am so very thankful for Brooke's story-telling, organic nature. She captured our wedding for exactly what it was and what I will remember it to be...full of joy, laughter, love and hope for the future!
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JENNA + JOSH
KRYSTAL & BRANDON
She’s professional, creative, organized, kind, and just a blast to be around. She made my husband comfortable instantly in front of a camera so she’s a miracle worker too. We can’t stop staring at our photos! So many people keep telling us how amazing they are!
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Jessica & Robby
Brooke has a true talent. She is able to tap into and capture moments you didn’t even realize were happening. Absolutely 100% recommend Brooke and her beautiful pictures. We booked her services for our engagement pictures and then immediately realized we needed to have her for our wedding also. I’m already preemptively dreaming of the anniversary shoot I want!
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Rori + Eli
Brooke truly listened to what we wanted as a couple, our hopes, and took time to understand our "vibe," which came through in her work she delivered.
I can't thank Brooke enough for her amazing work - seriously the BEST decision we made and brings me to tears each time I look at these beautiful, photographic memories we'll have forever.
ALYSSA & HUNTER
Not only is Brooke an amazing photographer, but she is so fun and easy to work with! She made the whole process feel natural and comfortable for someone who typically feels awkward and weird while getting pictures taken! I love all of the pictures and I highly recommend Brooke as a photographer!
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ALI & KYLE
That's exactly what Brooke does, she captures a story. No words needed. You can see it and feel it. You can remember the exact moment and how you feel for that person and see how they feel about you. Her intuitive eye has only gotten sharper. I can’t wait to see what other adventures await for her to capture.
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Christy + Austin
Brooke is the absolute best. She truly went above and beyond for my fiancé and I to be able to get our engagement photos taken with the fall colors. Our engagement session with Brooke was such a special experience and a memory we will cherish forever.
Brooke is so sweet, fun, personable and incredibly talented. We could not be more in love with our engagement photos!