How to Have A Ski Elopement in Washington
I’m glad you asked! Skiing is my absolute number 1 favorite thing to do in the winter in Washington and I probably ski up to 8 months per year. Eloping is one thing and adventure eloping is another! I absolutely love when couples decide to spice up their elopement (or engagement) by adding a fun activity that both people enjoy. I may be biased, but in Washington, you have some of the best epic mountains in all of the continental US. Whether you choose to ski at a resort or go to the backcountry like this couple, there’s soooo many options. If you’re not familiar with backcountry skiing, it’s basically a way to hike up a mountain sort of like cross country skiing, but you get to ski downhill and get first tracks. If you’re really curious, check out my blog on backcountry skiing in Washington.
Option 1: Ski Resort
This is a great option for more accessibility for your guests and a bit more simple to plan around with weather! I will help you get permission and permits sorted with the ski resorts so we can take photos on the slopes! I highly suggest going on a weekday to avoid the weekend crowds. You can totally ski in your full formal wear too.
While you may be expert skiers who seek only double black diamond runs, the best photos are honestly on mellower terrain to capture you both together. But! If you’re set on some steep chutes and crazy skiing, I am there for you and we can 100% make it happen too! And then imagine if you chose to have guests attend your elopement, you could have the best party ski on the slopes!
Another great thing about ski resorts is that you can easily host a reception at the base or a nearby town. Crystal Mountain is an exceptional fit because they have a gondola that can take non-skiers up to the top of the mountain and still join the festivities at the high alpine restaurant. Plus, who wouldn’t want a sweet view of the gorgeous Mount Rainier? My other favorite resort is Mt Baker! The views of Shuksan and Baker are unrivaled there. It’s a lot quieter than Crystal and offers so many open areas for the best photography. And obviously, if you have a favorite local ski resort, let’s do that!
Option 2: Backcountry Ski Tour
If you’re also a backcountry skier, omg, can I please take photos for you??? With backcountry skiing comes so much more freedom. Imagine waking up early for a sunrise tour to your ceremony spot and then skiing powder as the sun comes up! Or climbing an epic North Cascades mountain and saying your vows as the sun comes up (or goes down).
Obviously, backcountry skiing comes with its own risks like avalanche danger and selecting safer routes for the given weather. I’d suggest mid-late spring for more adventurous ski tours (like Eldorado or Mount Baker) to allow for a more stable snow pack and reaping the corn snow. But if you’re powder seeking, perhaps a mid-winter date would be optimal, but erring on short side for a tour since daylight is shorter and it allows more time for anything that might be thrown our way.
A few more thoughts
And whichever you choose, I think it’s awesome to pair the ski elopement with a local AirBnB stay. From woodsy getting ready photos at an A-frame cabins to ending in a steamy, intimate hot tub evening under cute Edison lightbulbs, this is your sign to make your adventure elopement a local Washington getaway!
And obviously, I’d be so incredibly down to photograph your ski elopement! Combined with my experience photographing skiers and elopements for the past 5 years, I’m confident that I will be the best photographer for you! I mean what other photographer would be willing to ski anything for you??? Let’s get this ski party started!