If you plan on hiking in your wedding dress for the majority of your elopement or even for a little while you’ll be able to take away a lot of helpful info here to help make it as seamless and easy as possible.
Movement is key when it comes to hiking in a wedding dress, you should be able to lift your legs up high for large steps, lift your arms up and not be weighed down, so lightweight dresses are best for hiking elopements. Read more about picking the perfect adventure elopement dress.
Other than making sure your dress is good for adventuring in, let me remind you that your dress will get dirty on any kinda hike out there - that’s where dresses get their gorgeous natural ombre’s or cute paw prints ;)
The key thing to take away from this is that you should be able to move freely in your dress, not only will this let you enjoy any activities you planned but it will also make sure you are safe on the trail or climbing up on boulders - safety is definitely important when it comes to hiking elopements, you’re still in the great outdoors so always be prepared. Read more about preparing for a hiking elopement here.
The obvious thing to do while hiking in your dress is to somehow lift the skirt up, for very short walks lifting your skirt up and simply hanging it over your arm could work great but for longer hikes, even 2 to 3 mile hikes it can get tiring and then you don’t have you hands free incase you need to use them.
Attach a string to your dress.
Attach a strap, loop or wrist band underneath or at the bottom of your dress so you are able to pick it up and keep it up, let it hang from your wrist or attach it to the back of you pack - the latter is my fave because then you have both hands free and it works great!
The cool draw string option.
Another string option of doing it is by sewing a draw string at the bottom of your dress, preferably on the inner layer, you’ll be able to lift your dress up entirely, creating a shorter version of your dress resulting in free legs and hands!
Drag it and drop it like it’s hot.
Or just let it BE! - let it get dirty, dragged and adventured. This doesn’t always work for all environments or all dresses, if your on a sandy beach or the desert red sands letting it drag could work great, even on a dusty or muddy trail could still work but definitely expect it to get dirty. Sometimes some materials will pick up sticks, twigs and leaves along the way. Materials like lace and tulle are dirt magnets and love picking these things up along the way, it is also tough to pick it out of the dress, but silk, chiffon and organza is amazing for dragging along and they are great at changing color at the edges. Obviously be careful with any dress when you walk over bushes, over stomps with sticks sticking out or anything like that on your trail.
To hike or not to hike…in it.
I highly recommend to opt for getting ready at the end of your trail if the hike exceeds 3 miles, you can decide to hike in hiking attire or get a super cute white jumpsuit to hike in, the options are endless.
Here’s two great ways to pack your dress or suit in your hiking backpack.
Always roll it up to avoid it getting too wrinkly, place it inside the bag your attire came in to keep it safe then place it inside a water proof bag, this can also be any plastic bag or trash bag. See what I did there, recycle. Make sure to check for holes though! This will keep it nice and dry on your hike. Then you can either place your ball of attire inside your pack at the very top or strap it on the outside using the straps hiking packs come with or even something like bungee cords could work! Trying to avoid rolling it at all? Keep it in the attire bag and clip the hanger to the back of your pack on the top somewhere - this always works!
Getting cheeky outside, I mean, getting ready outside.
Getting ready outside could seem kinda scary, especially if you’re the kind of person that is very private with their bodies. Rest assure that there’s certainly great ways to get ready for your elopement day outside.
Make use of Mother Nature.
Find a secluded spot like a large rock or a bunch of trees, this is pretty great if there’s things like this nearby, it is not always the case - but it will be pretty obvious to know ahead of time by looking at photos of the hike on All-trails, Google Earth Pro or even Social Media.
Utilize a pop-up.
If you are sure that there won’t be something like large rocks or thick trees and if you’re eloping around a time that there could be tons of other tourists around you can utilize a pop up tent. They are great for this situation but not so fun to hike with because they can be kinda bulky. So I only recommend this if it will be needed for sure.
Next to your car.
Another option is to get ready next to your car, this one is pretty obvious but super helpful if you take a 4x4 jeep ride up to your ceremony spot!
You and your partner can hold up a blanket or towel too, this could be like a last resort kind of option.
Let it be!
If you’re out there on your own then just let it be, our bodies are natural so being naked out in nature comes pretty natural - besides it can make for some cheeky photos ;)
Don't forget to check out these two super helpful blogs that walks hand in hand with this one.