April 27, 2021
This blog is all about how to elope in the beautiful state of Washington! We love Washington and it’s diverse landscape. It is one of the most amazing places to celebrate your love! We’ve included lots of important information to note, some recommended vendors, epic locations, and more! Hopefully, this is helpful when you are planning your Washington elopement. After all, eloping in Washington State is an incredible adventure!
Both Hannah and Adam were born and raised in Washington and man do we LOVE it! As children, both of us had similar experiences of camping, hiking, and exploring Washington. Now that we are together, we’ve been all over Washington, from the desert to the breath-taking Cascades to the rocky coast. We are both so grateful to live in such a beautiful state! There are just so many amazing places to adventure and elope in Washington. There are 3 amazing national parks (Olympic, North Cascades, Mt. Rainier) and so many more state parks! Living about an hour south of Seattle, we have mostly explored Olympic NP and Mt Rainier NP. But we’ve been adventuring to the coast, eastern Washington, and the North Cascades more often.
Decide whether or not an adventure elopement is right for you and your partner. It’s an incredible experience that is solely focused on the two of you and your love. But we totally understand that elopements aren’t for everyone! Check out our blog on Adventure Elopements and 13 Reasons to Elope to help you figure this out.
Hey, that’s where we come in! We absolutely love documenting elopements. They are beyond special. If you want to learn more about us, check out this page, and if you want to learn more about the experience we provide, check out this page. You won’t be disappointed! All you need in order to book us is a date! Then, we’ll help you plan your dream day.
This is one of our favorite parts! We’ll help you pick the best spot in Washington for your elopement. There is such a diversity of landscapes, that you have endless options. You can elope on the coast at a sandy beach or with jagged rocks. You can elope amongst wildflowers or in the mountains. You can elope at a lake, by a river, or under a waterfall. You can elope in the desert or at some pretty neat sand dunes. This is one of the hardest and easiest parts of planning! But don’t worry, we’ll be with you every step of the way.
Next, we’ll want to make sure we secure the proper wedding and Special Use permits for your day. It’s important that we try to get these as quickly as possible so that the park has time to get back to us. We’ll also want to secure your Marriage License, and anything else that might be important.
Most locations require the couple to purchase a wedding permit to make sure that it is a legal wedding. However, this depends on the location/venue. We’ll help you figure out if this is neccessary!
In most National Parks and State Parks in Washington, a Special Use Permit is required in order for you to have photos + a video of your elopement. Often times, we help you find this information, contact the National/State Park, and fill out the application to make it easy for you! Then, we’ll just invoice you for the cost. But sometimes, if you’re not having any guests or props, the park won’t require you to purchase a permit.
You can get a Washington State Marriage License at any County Auditor’s office regardless of whether or not you are a resident of Washington. The are 39 different Washington Counties, and each county will vary on pricing, but it is usually around $60. Both partners must be present and you must show valid photo IDs. You most likely don’t need an appointment (although that might be different due to covid-19).
You do not have to be a resident of Washington to get a Marriage License here, but you must be having your ceremony within the state. A Washington Marriage License is valid for 60 days, and there is typically a three-day waiting period. You have to apply for a license at least 3 days before your elopement.
If you are unable to apply for an application in-person, the best way to do this is to go online, fill out an application, and have the license mailed to your home.
Here is more information about obtaining a Marriage License from Pierce County (they often have Mount Rainier as the background for the license, so I recommend Pierce County over any other counties).
This is easily the best part of your elopement day. After all of the planning, excitement, and anticipation, we finally get to celebrate you. You get to have a stress-free day that’s 100% true to who you both are.
When it comes to weather in Washington, you genuienly never know what you’re going to get. Personally, we think the unexpected is kind of fun because it’s a new experience! We’ll always make sure that we are prepared for the unexpected, though. Our packs will always include a First Aid kit, hand warmers, extra snacks, water, and other necessities. Okay, let’s get into the different Washington seasons and what to expect!
In Washington, spring usually starts in late March and goes until the end of May. This is probably one of the rainiest seasons, as it rains more than half of the days each month. In the mountains, you’ll still find a lot of snow, and the average temperature is usually between 40-60 degrees. In areas closer to sea level, you’ll start to see a lot of green and new growth! It’s a beautiful time of year.
Summer starts in June and usually ends in late August/early September. June still has quite a bit of snow in high altitude locations, like Mount Rainier. But in July and August, you’ll see wildflowers bloom in fields and you’ll have more clear days. The average temperature is between 50-80 degrees, and it rains a lot less often. This is the most accessible season because all roads to the mountains are typically open by July. The only concern is that summer is a busy month, and there is the chance of wild fires.
Typically, autumn begins in September and ends in early November. Fall is one of our favorite seasons because it’s often a less busy season than summer, which makes it more ideal for hiking/exploring! The average temperature can range from about 70 degrees in early September to 40 degrees in November. The fall colors are beautiful in Washington State!
Winter months are between the end of November (beginning of December) and the end of February (beginning of March). While a lot of trails aren’t as accessible in the winter due to snow, there are still a lot of fun winter activities in Washington! You can visit the coast (which won’t have any snow), or you can embrace the snow and go snowboarding, backcountry skiing, snowshoeing, sledding, and more! Depending on where you are, the temperature usually ranges from 50-30 degrees. The rain definitely starts to pick up in the winter as well, and there are few times when it actually turns to snow in the Seattle area, but it’ll definitely be snowing in the mountains.
You + your love
Photo + Video Team
Snacks + Water
Champagne to Celebrate!
A Rain Coat (just in case LOL)
Depending on where you’re eloping, the best places to fly into would either be SeaTac airportor the Spokane airport. Spokane is in eastern Washington, so this is the best spot to fly into if you want to stay on the eastern side of Washington. For the coast, North Cascades, Mount Rainier, or the Olympics, Seattle would be the best place to fly into!
You have a lot of options when it comes to accomodations! You can rent a hotel, stay at a lodge, camp, book an Airbnb/VRBO, rent an RV, etc. There are tons of fun ideas! Here is a list of some of the best hotels and lodges to stay at in Washington. Camping is one of our favorite things to do, and some of the best campgrounds are: Hoh Rain Forest Campground, Ohanapecosh Campground, Colonial Creek Campground, Moran State Park, and White River Campground, just to name a few. And when it comes renting an Airbnb or VRBO, make sure to check out Washington’s unique stays! Or you can opt for renting an RV/trailer to travel in, which could be a fun adventure!
This is one of the lesser known National Parks in Washington, but we’re not sure why?! It’s absolutely breath taking, from waterfalls, to Lake Crescent, to epic panoramic mountain views. If you want to explore multiple landscapes, this location would be perfect for you! It’s even close to the coast, so you could visit both the water and the National Park! One of our favorite spots is the Hoh Rain Forest because it has huge Sitka Spruce, Western Red Cedar, Douglas Fir, and Western Hemlock Trees. And almost all of them are covered in draping moss!
On the Washington Coast, there is a variety of different spots to elope. You can get married on a sandy beach or on a rocky beach with epic rock formations! If you’re interested in eloping on the coast, check out this reel we made on Instagram for a sunset picnic elopement!
Hands down one of the best places to elope in Washington would be Mount Rainier. We actually have the most couples eloping at MRNP this year! Mount Rainier is incredible year round. In the winter, you have snow covered trails, which can be a great opportunity for snowshoeing or backcountry skiing. The wildflowers in the summer are amazing, and the fall colors are absolutely incredible! It’s basically impossible not to have a wonderful time at Mount Rainier. Don’t believe me, check out this Backpacking Elopement and this Riverside Mt Rainier Elopement!
This is an epic spot for beautiful views of the Cascades Mountain Range! One of our favorite spots is up near Mount Baker, called Artist Point. Check out this elopement gallery from that location! Another beautiful (and commonly known for it’s stunning blue color) spot is Diablo Lake.
And of course, if you’re interested in eloping with us, contact us here!