Buena Vista elopements are some of my favorite Colorado elopements. I could photograph them for the rest of my life and never get tired of them. Jaclyn, Brian, and their pup often hike around Buena Vista in their spare time so they knew right away that they wanted to elope in Buena Vista. When I read their inquiry, I squealed from excitement because I’ve been camping and hiking Buena Vista since 2015 and I love any excuse to go back and explore.
The morning of their elopement, we met before sunrise to hike to their ceremony location to take advantage of the beautiful lighting and avoid potential crowds. J + B had the most beautiful ceremony, their vows were amazing and brought each other (& me) to tears.
Following their elopement ceremony, they poured some coffee and had a quick bite to eat before sitting down and reading the letters their families and friends wrote them for this day. They laughed, cried, and talked about how happy they were to have such a great support system.
After this, we explored! It was so fun & we had zero crowds because they chose a weekday (read here about why weekday weddings are the move).
After it all, they marked up their new camper and hit the road to continue their celebration as newlyweds.
Avoid weekends. Buena Vista is many locals’ and tourists’ destination for recreation & for good reason because it’s amazing. Due to this, it’s best to avoid weekends if you can. Many people elope in Colorado because they value privacy and an intimate experience. The easiest way to ensure you don’t have a crowd is to avoid weekends since many people are exploring or passing through.
Plan around afternoon weather. Summer in Colorado is known for its moody afternoons…meaning, we often have weather pass through in the early afternoon. You don’t want to be on top of Mt. Princeton, Cottonwood Pass, or above tree line when those storms roll through. It’s not even the rain that couples should worry about, it’s the lightening. If you’re on top of a ridge somewhere, on the way to say your vows on Mt. Harvard, or something, turn around and seek shelter. Safety first.
Prepare for the elevation. Many couples elope in Buena Vista from a different state, or they are from Colorado but a lower elevation. Depending on where you choose to elope in Buena Vista, the altitude can have an effect on you. The town of Buena Vista is at an elevation of 7,965 feet and there are many elopement locations around 12,000 feet and up towards 14,000 feet. Make sure you arrive a couple days in advance to allow yourself time to acclimate, drink lots of water, pack electrolytes and snacks, and ensure that you’re caught up on sleep!