The Best Time to Elope in Colorado
"When is the best time to elope in Colorado?"
There is no wrong time to elope in Colorado. Colorado has all four seasons, and we get the best of all worlds. However, there may be better months to elope, depending on the weather you want. For instance, if you want gorgeous sunny weather, Colorado is notorious for having blizzards throughout early spring, it sometimes snows in June! This guide should help you decide when the best time to elope in Colorado based on the weather you're hoping for and the activities you're planning.
Things to ask yourself before we get started:
What kind of weather do you want during your elopement? Sunshine during a warm day? Are you hoping to see wildflowers? Golden foliage on a crisp autumn morning? Three feet of snow and fresh powder falling?
What kind of scenery are you looking for? Epic mountain views, waterfalls, sand dunes, or something else?
What types of activities do you want to do during your elopement? Hiking, boating, kayaking, a polar plunge, camping, snowboarding, skiing, or snowshoeing?
If you want warm weather and wildflowers:
If you're hoping for gorgeous sunny weather and wildflowers in the mountains, you'll most likely want to elope in the first few weeks of July. During this time, places like Rocky Mountain National Park, Crested Butte, and Steamboat Lake State Park are bursting with blossoming wildflowers. In most mountain locations, the weather will vary, but temperatures should be between 60-90 degrees. If you're planning an elopement here during this time, plan on rocking a short sleeve dress but come prepared with a few layers!
This is the best time for a camping elopement in Colorado, however, do know that the nights can get cold still. Make sure you pack some of your warmest clothes!
If you want to elope in the Sand Dunes:
The best time of year to elope in the sand Dunes is generally May. The snowmelt will cause a stream to cut through the dunes during this time, meaning there's a small river to play in! The dunes also aren't too hot during the early spring, during the summer they can get to unbearable temperatures.
If you can't make it during May, I recommend skipping the summer months and going there during the early fall. That way, the temperature is much more bearable!
Do note; if you decide to do a morning elopement hike up the sand dunes, you're going to want to wear warm shoes. I learned the hard way! The sand is as ice cold and snow in the early mornings, even in the summer. It can be a miserable experience if you try to do this in sandals. It's hard enough to walk in the dunes in sandals anyways!
If you want elopement photos at Trailridge Road in Rocky Mountain National Park:
Not every epic road and hike is open year-round in Colorado; this is true for the popular elopement photo destination Trailridge Road, which is closed during the winter. Usually, the road opens on Memorial Day weekend (usually early June) and closes around Halloween. So you can either visit during peak summer months, or the stunning fall foliage!
If you want a Colorado elopement with fall Colors:
Fall colors are unusual in the Colorado mountains! If you're going to capture it during your elopement, you'll want to plan for mid-September through mid-October. Some of my favorite spots are Allenspark, Rocky Mountain National Park, Grand Lake, and Aspen during the fall. I also love fall elopements because the weather is generally my preferred temperature, not too hot or cold. However, I will warn you it tends to freeze in Colorado before Halloween. We call this typical Colorado weather!
If you want to go snowshoeing during your Colorado elopement:
The ski slopes open deceivingly early in Colorado since they make their snow, and each year it seems to get earlier! You won't want to plan a winter elopement in November when people start to visit Colorado for the ski slopes. Instead, I suggest waiting until the new year and planning your snowshoeing elopement in January or February. While you still could get away with it mid to late December, sometimes the snow isn't great. Waiting will give you a better outcome. Also, specific elevations and locations don't get as much snow as others early on. If you want the best snow head to Breckenridge or Steamboat Springs during this time.
If you want to go snowboarding or skiing during your elopement:
Like I said previously, the ski lifts open before the snow is worthy in Colorado. If you want a ski elopement during the winter, I advise going January-April. Also, make sure you're getting to your destination a day early. The primary highway to the most popular ski areas, i70, often gets shut down during the winter. Plan accordingly and give yourself some extra time - you deserve it anyway!
If you opt for a winter elopement, I highly recommend long sleeve dresses and opaque skin-colored tights.
What day of the week is best to elope in Colorado?
If you want privacy and intimacy during your best bet is to elope Monday through Thursday. Colorado hiking trails are notoriously packed during the weekend, so hiking elopements aren't ideal. If you want the most privacy possible elope during the fall or winter on a weekday!
Do you want astrophotos included in your elopement photos?
The best time to take astrophotos is during a new moon phase, essentially when the moon is not visible in the night sky. A lot goes into astrophotos, including clear weather and being far away from light pollution, making them achievable, so the Sand Dunes, Rocky Mountain National Park, Steamboat Lake, and many other Colorado mountain locations make this attainable. Check with your photographer to see if they think this is possible; however, don't necessarily get your hopes up too high, the conditions need to be perfect.
The Average High Temperatures Per Each Month in Colorado:
January 42 °F
February 45 °F
March 52 °F
April 59 °F
May 68 °F
June 79 °F
July 84 °F
August 82 °F
September 74 °F
October 63 °F
November 50 °F
December 42 °F
Rember, this is just a monthly average reported so that temperatures may be hotter or colder. Colorado is also known for unpredictable weather, sunny 70-degree weather one day and snow the following day. This is why it's always essential to make a plan B for your Colorado elopement.
I hope this guide helps you to pick the best time to elope in Colorado! If you have any questions about specific locations and what it's like during that time of the year, please do not hesitate to reach out.