One of the things I love most about elopements is that they are truly unique to each couple. Some couples want to bundle up and have an epic winter snowshoe adventure. Others want to rent a Jeep and explore some off-road trails. And some, like Chance and Haley, start the day with a hike to a mountain elopement ceremony, and end it with a thrilling sunset mountain bike ride.
When we first started planning their mountain elopement, Chance and Haley had two goals for their day: An intimate sunrise ceremony on a mountaintop overlooking mountain ranges, and then a mountain biking adventure later in the day at sunset. And of course, their day wouldn’t be complete without including their frequent adventure companion, their furbaby Indy.
We chose Crested Butte, one of the country’s mountain biking capitals, as our initial location. However, since Colorado weather is unpredictable during the shoulder season, we knew we’d need to have a backup plan.
Cut to the day before the ceremony. I headed out to scope out the location, and found that it was still way too packed in with snow for us to access. No problem! We had a fantastic second location in mind that turned out to be the absolute perfect backdrop for Chance and Haley’s vows.
It was a 4 mile hike to our spot. We wanted to be there for sunrise, so we met up with Chance’s sister and her boyfriend at 2 am so they could join us. The weather was chilly and there was still some snow on the ground, but it was a gorgeous hike under a clear sky filled with stars. This would be the first time Chance and Haley would see their elopement spot, so the anticipation built as we climbed higher.
My absolute favorite part of the day was seeing the look on Chance and Haley’s faces as they reached the top of the mountain and saw their ceremony location for the first time. It was clear from their smiles that their mountain elopement dreams were coming true.
Once we reached the site, they got ready separately for the ceremony. Haley and Chance had decided to share their vows privately, before they had their first look. As they stood back-to-back reading the words they had written to each other, you could feel every bit of the love between them. Later, Chance told me that he was so anxious during this moment that he feared he would pass out, but once he turned and saw Haley it all melted away. It was a truly beautiful moment.
After the ceremony, Chance popped some champagne and the group celebrated on the mountaintop. They shared drinks and snacks and danced together under the warm sun, including Indy in all the festivities. They even had him sign the marriage license. (Yes, furbabies signing marriage licenses is totally a thing you can do in Colorado and yes, it’s awesome! Read all about this and other tips for How to Get Married in Colorado.) Soon, it was time for the hike back home where we took a nap and prepared for the second part of our adventure.
We met back up later that afternoon for a mountain bike ride in Gunnison. Indy rode along in a specially made backpack, adorably peeking out over Chance’s shoulder as he rode. After a super fun ride through the mountain trails, we stopped so Haley and Chance could share some Bourbon and take in the stunning sunset views. It was the perfect end to a day filled with love, fun, and adventure.
Colorado truly has something for everyone. Whatever type of elopement you’re dreaming of, you can likely find it here! The first step is to DREAM BIG. Don’t let your doubts or anyone else’s expectations get in the way of your perfect elopement. As Chance and Haley put it, “Don’t worry or care about what anyone else will think of your plans. Do what makes the both of you happy and that’s it!” For more tips on how to find the best elopement package for you, check out our blog post, What to Consider When Choosing a Colorado Elopement Package.
Hi there! I’m Adam, and my favorite thing in the world is helping couples just like you plan their perfect elopement. Whatever your ideal day looks like, I’m here to help you make it happen.
If you’re ready to start planning or just have some questions to decide which elopement package is right for you, I’d love to hear from you. You may just find that your wildest fantasies for your elopement day are more possible than you think!