February 18, 2021

Colorado Elopement

I love all weddings here at Painted Primrose, big or small we have done them all! However, I wanted to take today to talk about your Colorado Elopement! With the 2020 pandemic, a lot of couples moved to smaller weddings, more intimate weddings and more outdoor weddings. Elopements are an awesome combination of all three! If you love the thought of hiking around in your wedding dress, having a special moment with you and your honey, or having epic mountain views in your wedding photos a Colorado elopement might be exactly what you’ve been looking for. Or, if the thought of getting married and saying your most intimate feelings in front of a huge crowd makes you feel a little ill eloping might be for you!

If you want a big party with everyone you love and you aren’t okay with some dirt on your dress, you may want to consider a more formal mountain wedding! Stay tuned- in a few weeks I am going to put out a blog all about our favorite mountain venues for you to check out.

Colorado Elopement Locations

There are literally so many places in Colorado for you to elope. Mountains, valleys and even some desert locales! No matter what you are looking for, Colorado has it. Here are some of my favorites- I tried to keep them in our service area, and I was successful for the most part, but there were some I just couldn’t leave out!

Rocky Mountain National Park

Of course RMNP is at the top of my list! Right in our backyard, gorgeous, accessible, what more could you ask for?? Rocky Mountain is also a huge park, so there are a lot of places where you could plan your elopement. However, since it is also a huge and very popular park, be prepared for people everywhere. There are also some very strict restrictions in place for eloping in Rocky Mountain. There are so many things to know about planning your Rocky Mountain elopement that I just couldn’t fit them all in this post! So, I decided to write a separate RMNP elopement post which you’ll be able to check out next week.

Colorado Elopement

Rocky Mountain Elopement- Larsen Photo Co.

Boulder Open Space & Mountain Parks

I might be a little biased about eloping in Boulder since it’s SO close to our shop, but you can’t argue that the convenience is amazing. With stunning views of the Flatirons and several options for elopement locations, the Boulder open space is a close, easy to get to, beautiful location for your Colorado elopement. However, like many of these this is a very popular location so there will be people! More pros of this location is you are able to invite more people, and you could even host a formal reception in Boulder with out having to worry about too much travel time. There are also so many different shelters, overlooks and restaurants nearby that you can have exactly what you want. Boulder is also a very foodie and trendy city so there is no shortage of beer to drink or places to eat.

Colorado Elopement

Boulder Open Space Elopement- Larsen Photo Co.

Horsetooth Resevoir

About an hour from us here in Longmont, Horsetooth Resevoir is great if your looking for water! It is a big location but very popular. (As they all are!). There are always a lot of people around, but this is a very accessible location.

Horsetooth Recevoir

Horsetooth Elopement- Larsen Photo Co.

Garden of The Gods

Garden of the Gods is popular for good reason- the views are almost to die for. Located a ways south of us in Colorado Springs, it tends to be a bit warmer there. That makes for a good reason to get married there in the winter. The red rocks also feel almost otherworldly in photos! Colorado Springs is also a very cute little town with lots of nightlife and fun stuff going on.

Colorado Elopement

Garden of the Gods Elopement- Larsen Photo Co.

Brainard Lake

Brainard Lake is one of the most popular recreational areas near us. On the weekends it will be teeming with people, and due to Covid restrictions, they were VERY limited on the number of people they were allowing in this past summer. It is unclear what 2021 will look like. The location is also only open for about four months of the year, because the road closes due to snow. However, if you are willing to brave the crowds, the views and location are very rewarding.

Brainard Lake

Brainard Lake Engagement- Larsen Photo Co.

Things to Know When Planning your Colorado Elopement

  1. Colorado is very popular with tourists, travelers and hikers. Of course there are some super private locations, but this will often be found after an intense hike. One thing us Colorado vendors like to say is when you’re eloping in Colorado you can have private, easy to get to, or mountain views. But you can only pick two of those. Eloping during the week or the winter will probably help reduce the number of people around, but there will probably still be tourists and locals out on the trails.
  2. You’ll probably have to do at least a little hiking to get to your location! Make sure your attire is comfortable and easy to move it. You also won’t want anything to tight or structured, because you are asking for something to rip that way! Sturdy shoes are also a must! You can always change into those gorgeous heels once you get where you are going.
  3.  The weather in Colorado is very unpredictable. Whether you’re planning a Colorado elopement or a big wedding this is something you need to keep in mind. Especially in the mountains. Whether can change quickly and it can snow literally any day of the year. Come prepared with layers. July is consistently the warmest month, with March and April being the snowiest.
  4. Seasons here are very different from a lot of places. If you want a meadow full of “spring wildflowers” you definitely won’t be getting married in what you consider spring. Generally wildflowers are best in July. And see the above point for my warnings about the snow.
  5. Many vendors in the area require pretty steep financial minimums for your wedding. This is because there are a lot of people getting married here, and a lot of people from out of state. Always make sure you’re up front and open about what you are thinking. See below for other vendors we love that are great for elopements!
  6. Plan ahead- get your documents, your lodging, everything all taken care of as soon as you can. In Colorado you can self solemnize (meaning you don’t need an officiant or witnesses) but you will still need to apply for license. Also, many of these locations require different permits and licenses to use the space for weddings or photography.

Other Colorado Elopement Vendors

Of course I love love love partnering with other local vendors! There are so many great wedding professionals in the area. Again, I couldn’t fit how much I love them into one post so stay tuned for more about all our favorite local vendors for all your planning needs. Here I just wanted to include some people who I know love working on your Colorado elopement. Photographers are often super great resources for planning your elopement because they know all the good spots.

The inspiration for this guide comes from Larsen Photo Co. Nina is literally so amazing. She has shot so many elopements and her blog (the inspiration for this blog) has all the tips and tricks! AND she even has an elopement guide right on her website. Check her out here.

We The Light photography also has some super helpful elopement guides, and they have also done so many! They are great for eloping in Rocky Mountain.

Check out our blog for all the planning tools you need!




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