Top 5 Reasons For Hiking Elopement
A hiking elopement can be a unique and adventurous way to celebrate your love and commitment especially if you both love to be adventurous. Here are the top five reasons why you might consider having a hiking elopement:
- Intimate and Personal: Hiking elopements are typically small, intimate gatherings with just a few close friends or family members, or even just the two of you. This allows you to focus on your connection and create a truly personal and meaningful experience.
- Breathtaking Scenery: Hiking elopements often take place in stunning natural settings like mountains, forests, deserts, or by the sea. The more intimate, private and breathtaking scenery provides a beautiful backdrop for your wedding ceremony and stunning photo opportunities. Some of the most beautiful spots require a little work to get to but the views are so worth it.
- Adventure: If you and your partner love adventure in the outdoors, a hiking elopement can combine your passion for nature with your love for each other. It's a romantic way to start your journey together as a married couple.
- Less Stress and Smaller Cost: Traditional weddings can be expensive and stressful to plan. Hiking elopements are generally more affordable and require less planning, which can reduce stress and allow you to focus on what truly matters: your love for one another.
- Connection with Nature: Being in the great outdoors can be a spiritual and grounding experience. It allows you to connect with nature and appreciate the beauty of the world around you, which can add a deeper layer of meaning to your wedding ceremony.
How to Plan a Hiking Elopement
A hiking elopement is a wedding where the couple hikes to a remote location to exchange vows or just part of their wedding adventure after the ceremony at more accessible locations. If you both like to hike there is no better activity to incorporate into your dream elopement plus you'll have access to some of the most beautiful and remote locations without the crowds.
Although you have to prepare for hiking on your elopement as you would for any trekking adventure there are view logistics one must keep in mind.
Food and Water- pretty obvious but proper meal planing is iportant especially if you don't want to rush your elopement. Having a picnic during your hike is going to be its internal part of your whole elopement experience. No one wants to be cranky or hungry so plan on bringing some special meal, drinks or even a small cake to make your hiking wedding memorable.
Bringing your dog-If bringing your pet is important to you there are a many dog-friendly hiking trails out there, especially in the national forests. Unfortunately, national parks are a bit more strict when it comes to pets, so be sure to do research of your location before you bring your furry friend along, and always remember to Leave No Trace
Reaserching ceremony permit: if you're planning on having an official small ceremony you must research if you can legally get married in the wilderness. Most public lands are easy in obtaining such permits if necessary but many National Parks have strict regulations where you can get married and oftentimes wilderness is not the place. Don't worry you can hike anyway and have portraits taken at any locations regardless.
Location research- as your photographer I would help you select the best hiking trails depending on your activity and fitness level and the views you're dreaming of at the end of your hike. If you already have a favorite hike in mind that's great.
What to Wear For Your Hiking Elopement?
Just because you are going to do some hiking on your wedding day doesn't mean you have to sacrifice either comfort or the vision you had for your special day. I encourage couples to bring a change of clothes: one comfortable for the hike, and second their dream wedding attire for the first look, ceremony, vows at the desired locations after the hike.
So what exactly should you bring:
Backpack-no hiking adventure starts without a good backpack that will fit snacks, water, change of clothes or shoes.
Hiking Boots- comfortable shoes are a must not only of you're planning on hiking on your elopement day but also because if you're eloping that means you'll be stepping on uneven surface and in general you'll be spending more time on your feet than not.
If you'd like to have pictures in some cute shoes you should bring them for change as well.
Your wedding attire-Some couple choose to hike in comfortable athletic clothing and some prefer to go all adventure and hike in their wedding clothes. If you don't mind getting your dress dirt (after all what adventure would that be if it didn't) by all means hike in your wedding dress, or bring one for change. Don't worry about it taking too much room. I had clients bring a massive dress with long train on their 4 mile sunrise hike.
Headlamp- goes without saying. A good headlamp is necessary not only for those cool nightspots, but also for hiking down after sunset or before the sunrise.
Raingear- and warm jackets are highly recommended anywhere in the forest or mountains or at higher altitudes. Te weather can chance quickly so you want to make sure you are prepared if it does.
Are You Ready For Your Own Hiking Adventure?
Ultimately, a hiking elopement is a fantastic choice if you and your partner value intimacy, adventure, and a strong connection with nature. It's a chance to celebrate your love in a way that is uniquely meaningful to you both.