What to Expect When Eloping in Utah | Utah Elopement Photographer

With the popularity of micro wedding and elopements, I decided to dedicate a whole post on what to expect when eloping in Utah. Have you decided you want to elope in Utah? The best part about Utah is that there are so many epic places to elope. If you want to elope in a national park like Zion National Park or have a ceremony on a ridge in Big Cottonwood Canyon, I’m here to help! I’ve had the incredible opportunity to become a wedding photographer in Utah that I now call home over the last 4 years. I love getting outside and exploring new places. I’ve gotten to photograph several Utah elopements in the mountains and the desert and it’s the best part about my job for sure. Elopements don’t have to just be you and your partner either; they can be your 25 closest family and friends there to celebrate your special day. They can be whatever you want them to be while following the rules outlined below.

Rules for Eloping in Utah

  1. Permits. If you are eloping in Utah, you will need a permit. Regardless of whether you’re getting married in a national park, a state park, national forest, or BLM land. Some places require your photographer to have a permit as well. Each location has a different fee associated with it, but it’s generally not any more than $100. It’s typically easy to find information for the location you are thinking by searching in Google. For example, here is the guide about permits for Zion National Park. More remote places such as BLM land can be harder to find information about. I’m happy to help with any of this as well.
  2. Flowers. Some locations do not allow real flowers. You will have to use dried flowers or artificial ones to not disturb the native plant species. I know that Dead Horse Point State Park does not allow flowers, but Zion does.
  3. Officiant. To legally get married in Utah, you are required to have an officiant and 2 witnesses. Hello, I am one of those witnesses 🙂 I know of a great officiant if you need a recommendation. For more information on where to get your wedding license, please click here.
  4. Conservation. You’re probably getting eloped out in nature because you love to be surrounded by nature and and you don’t want the stress of a big wedding. I want to capture the beauty of whatever location you’ve decided upon while practicing conservation. You know the saying, “leave nothing but footprints, take nothing but pictures”? That’s what I’m here to do. I do not want to disturb any of the natural vegetation by stomping all over it. I strive to be respectful of the land so others can enjoy it for decades to come.
Right/ An elopement in Moab Left/ An elopement in Salt Lake City

What Time of Year to Elope in Utah

The cool thing about Utah is that there are 4 distinct seasons. I’m originally from Georgia and know how untrue that is for some parts of the country. Depending on where in Utah you’re wanting to elope and what sort of vibe you’re wanting. I’ll outline the pros and cons of each season below:

Northern Utah Mountains (Salt Lake City, Park City, Logan, Provo, Midway, Heber)

  • Winter – There is lots of snow in the mountains and temperatures are typically in the teens to 30s. If you’re wanting a fun day in the snow, this is definitely your time to elope in Utah. I love the snow and there are so many activities you can participate in in the winter in northern Utah.
  • Spring – The early spring months are still snowy and are referred to as the “mud season” with the snow melting. I suggest an outdoor elopement in Utah in spring mid to late May. The colors start to come alive and the hills are beautifully green.
  • Summer – The summer months are probably the most common to elope in northern Utah. The days are warm (typically in the 70s and 80s in the mountains), the days are really long, and there are many places to explore.
  • Fall – The fall colors in Utah are quite unmatched with the peak being the last week of September and first week of October. When I had my Utah mountain elopement, it was in October. The weather can be tricky this time of the year, but I think it’s so worth it because of how beautiful it is.

Southern Utah Desert (Moab, St. George, National Parks, Cedar City)

  • Winter – It does snow in the Utah desert and can be cold. If you’re wanting an intimate day and not see any people, the winter months are perfect for you. I think that the snow against the red rocks is beautiful.
  • Spring – Spring is my favorite time in the desert. The plants become alive again and the temperatures are perfect between March and late May.
  • Summer – Summer is incredibly hot from June to September. There can be more crowds in the summer as well. An elopement can be done in the summer months and I have photographed lots of elopements during those months.
  • Fall – Fall is amazing in the desert. The days have cooled off and it’s not as crowded as the summer months. It feels like fall from mid-October to early-December.
Utah Elopement
Kayleigh and Ryan hiking for their elopement in Zion National Park

Are you wanting to elope in Zion National Park? Check out this Ultimate Guide to Eloping in Zion National Park that I made 🙂

I hope this answered some of your questions on What to Expect When Eloping in Utah. I am happy to help with any part of the planning process when it comes to eloping and gathering the correct permits. Contact Me to learn more.

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