You have your elopement all planned out. Got the elopement location, your vows have been rewritten 100 times, and it’s time to commit yourself to your partner. Now, you’re standing on the mountain top, and there are 20 onlookers taking pictures and disrupting your special moment.
The reality is that getting privacy outdoors in a public area is never guaranteed unless you plan on eloping off the beaten path. Let’s explore the best ways you can get privacy on your elopement day.
Tourists don’t necessarily hike far and prefer easy access to viewing areas. If you are open to going further, you can find an elopement location that is more private than the more common spots. Here are various ways you can go further:
Rent a 4x4
Rent a helicopter
Fat tire bikes can get you around in the snow or desert sands and beaches. If a 4x4 is not as accessible, you can rent 4-wheelers too.
Elope on a Weekday
Visitors to national parks or attractions tend to prefer enjoying the outdoors on the weekend. If visiting and making a long weekend out of their vacation, many people will choose to take a Monday or Friday off work, so they have an extra day.
The best time of the week to elope is from Tuesday-Thursday. If you want to elope on a different day to these, there are other things you can consider to maximize the privacy at your elopement.
Go in The Off-Season
Just like on the weekdays, eloping in the off-season is much less crowded. Landscapes will change with the season, but it doesn’t mean they are the most beautiful when tourists come. Elopement locations will shine in any season!
The summer and spring will bring greenery and blooming flowers. The fall is spectacular, with reds, yellows, and browns covering treetops. In snowy locations in the winter, white-capped mountains make for winter wonderland elopements.
Sunrise and Sunset – Privacy on Your Elopement Day
When you want privacy and seclusion on your elopement day, my number one tip is to elope at sunrise or sunset. Picture standing on a mountaintop with your partner, and the day is dawning around you. The start of the day is a perfect symbol for the start of your journey as a couple. Getting up early to witness such an experience is worth it, every time.
You can experience alpenglow at both sunrise and sunset, a reddish glow that can be seen near sunset or sunrise on the summits of mountains. It is a unique and intimate experience you get to share with your partner. Depending on the direction the mountain is facing, you can experience the following:
West facing mountains will get a sunset alpenglow.
East facing mountains will set a sunrise alpenglow. Your chances of seeing alpenglow the best is in the mornings, as the weather is usually crisp and clear.
Benefits of eloping at sunrise:
You can have better seclusion on your elopement day. Less likely to bump into tourists so early in the morning.
There can be less traffic on the road and the trail on the way to your elopement location.
It is not only an amazing way to start the day, but you get to spend the whole day on an adventure with your partner.
Compared to a sunset’s “golden hour,” a sunrise can create beautiful images as it's sometimes even more golden than at sunset.
You have a better chance of experiencing cloud inversions if you are a bit higher up.
Benefits of eloping at sunset:
By the time the sun sets, most people head home for dinner. However, be mindful that tourists love chasing sunsets and still search for unpopular spots to experience the beauty of this time of day.
Due to the foot traffic, it’s a good idea to arrive at least 2 hours before sunset. This gives you time to search for a lesser-known sunset viewing point and avoid crowds ahead of time.
Avoid leaving directly after sunset, and instead, stay past “blue hour.” You’ll get to miss the crowds when you leave.
You can sleep in and have a slower-paced morning to prepare for your elopement.
Sunsets create the most magical scenes and are perfect for memorable photos.
Experience “golden hour,” the hour before sunset, where you can get the best golden, creamy, dreamy sunbeams for your photos.
“Blue hour” is the hour after sunset, and taking photos during this time will make for moody and dreamy images.
Have Alternative Locations Nearby
When you go against the grain and search for off-the-beaten-path spots to elope – it always pays off. If you stay amongst the crowds, you might have to share the location with other couples getting married and even stand in line to see the view. Have a backup location in mind if your first choice is too crowded.
Do some research or ask me, your elopement photographer, to find the perfect location to say, “I do”! By booking me at Avonture, you’ll receive a thorough location guide with 5 to 10 location suggestions. These suggestions get based on your preferences and dreams for your day. The locals in the area will also have insight into the best views with the least traffic.
Prepare to Have A Backup Plan In Place
Being flexible on your location will be less stressful for you. Conditions can also get unpredictable such as the weather or road closures. Nature beats to her own drum, and we adjust our plans accordingly. Have an open mind and remember that plans that change is all part of the adventure, so embrace spontaneity! You can put your faith in me that no matter what, I’ll make sure your day will still be perfect.
Always Do Research Beforehand
Public lands can’t promise privacy or seclusion on your elopement day, which is why it’s so important to do location-specific research. It will go a long way!
Research ahead of time about your elopement location to learn when it’s tourist season and find more amazing location alternatives other than the popular ones. You can use apps like All Trails and Google Earth Pro to discover more!
Any spot can get crowded or impacted by the weather. Always be prepared with backup locations and have an open mind on the day of your elopement.
Curious to know where to begin when choosing the perfect location?
Head to this blog: How to choose your elopement location.