Backcountry Vows

Colorado Elopement Guide

What is an Elopement?

An elopement can really be anything. To us an elopement is a non-traditional, intimate, and intentional way of marrying your best friend. The focus of an elopement is the couple (and their closest loved ones) instead of the 200+ guest experience. For our own wedding, we wanted to value nature and our closest family/friends. We chose to marry in the San Juan mountains where we had always wanted to adventure to. Elopements allow for you to value what is most important to you and your partner.

The technical term “elopement” no longer means running away to the courthouse without your family knowing. Elopements can honestly be whatever you want it to be. For us, it meant an entire week of exploring in the San Juan mountains with our closest family and friends. Your elopement is your time to customize a day (or week) to celebrate the union of you and your partner surrounded by those you love the most. Let’s take a hold of the word “elopement” and make it your own!

Our Wedding

Colorado Airbnb Elopement Video

The perfect Boulder backyard wedding.

5 Tips for Eloping in Colorado

  1. Colorado hiking trails and overlooks are often busy with tourists and explorers in the Summer. Our number one tip is to plan your elopement on a weekday. This allows you to enjoy these beautiful spots without an insane number of people watching you. If a weekend isn’t possible, find a remote “off the beaten path” spot or private vacation rental. There are plenty of “secret” overlooks, Airbnbs and trails that can be enjoyed with a little bit of searching. If you need help finding those “secret” spots, reach out and we can help! We have explored all around Colorado and have plenty of spots to share!
  2. Hire a local Colorado videographer and photographer for your elopement. The locals have explored these places with their own feet. While we love Google Earth it never compares to exploring these locations in person. We know what to expect with weather, road closures, high altitude, trail congestion, and favorite local coffee/breweries.
  3. The amount of National Forest in Colorado is unbelievable and the “top” spots are not always the best spots. Colorado is SOOOOO beautiful and there are so many amazing spots that are rarely geo-tagged or mentioned on any “top 10 places to….” blogs. These are those spots locals stumble upon on their own adventures. While Rocky Mountain National Park is BEAUTIFUL and holds a special place in our hearts, there is a lot of red tap and other headaches that go along with getting married there. You don’t have to fall onto the typical outdoor wedding locations to find an incredible spot. How cool would it be to find your own special spot that only a few other couples have been married at.
  4. Looking to skip finding an officiant or want a family member to officiant? Colorado is one of the few states that allows you to self-solemnize! This means you don’t need a minister or legal officiant to get married in Colorado. All you need is your marriage license and your partner (you don’t even need a witness!!).
  5. Your marriage license can be picked up at any courthouse, no matter where you are getting married. This allows you to pick up your marriage license near the airport or Airbnb instead of being worried about the limited hours of a tiny courthouse near your elopement spot. Fees are only $30 and can be picked up 30 days before your wedding just make sure both you and your partner are there with the correct form of ID and payment (some places require cash only). If you need any help researching these regulations, let us know! We just went through it ourselves!

Colorado Hiking Elopement Video

Why not elope on the same trail you got engaged?!?

5 Ways to Include your Family in your Elopement

  1. Share a video with them after the wedding by hiring an elopement videographer. Hiring a Videographer allows your family and friends to experience your adventure with you. You can have the whole day (or week) to yourselves to immerse yourselves into nature and each other knowing someone is there to capture all of the raw emotions and moments.
  2. Make your wedding day uniquely you two while planning a small ceremony to include your family and friends. We chose to backpack to Ice Lake the night before our wedding to enjoy sometime alone before heading down the mountain for our family ceremony. It was the perfect mix of adventure and family. It is important to make your day centered around you and your partner but we all know how important family is as well.
  3. Turn one day into an entire week. Who says your wedding celebration has to be only one day?!? Plan a week with your family and fill it full of hikes, brewery tours, brunches, and game nights with them. Many of them may have traveled a great distance so why not make the time leading up to your wedding full of unforgettable moments. This elopement is all about you and your partner want.
  4. Have your family/friends create videos or write letters of affirmation and good luck. Hike them up to the top of the mountain and read/watch them together as part of your ceremony.
  5. Celebrate with them after your ceremony is done. Plan a party or gathering a few days, month/s, or year after your ceremony. Share your pictures and videos from the day during this time to bring them into the emotions of the day with you. Who can say no to free food and laughter?

Colorado Elopement Videography Pricing

Our films vary anywhere from $2,000 – $6,000 depending on the number of films and time you want us around. We suggest planning for your videographer to be around for at least 4 hours. Your elopement is more than the ceremony so it is important to have some of those in between moments captured along with your ceremony.

Every videographer is different with how much they charge for each item. Here are a few things we include in each of our packages.

  • Highlight Film (3-5 minutes)
  • Aerial footage (when applicable)
  • Digital gallery to download + share your films
  • Personalized location scouting + planning
  • Custom timelines from 4 hrs to multi-day
  • Travel within Colorado included

Planning your elopement? We specialize in adventure elopements and would love to help you plan and capture your day!

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