Yosemite is without a doubt one of the most uniquely stunning places on earth. Its outstanding natural beauty draws in people from all over the world, which makes it the perfect destination for an elopement. There are hundreds of incredible spots to perform the ceremony, plus exploring with your photographer to get those incredible moments is a blast! If you’re contemplating eloping in Yosemite National Park, there are a few things you’ll need to know. I’ll provide you with some of the best spots and tips for your special day in Yosemite.
One of the most popular reasons to elope is that couples don’t want to deal with the stress of wedding planning. Who can blame them? There’s no guest list, no reception planning, and a whole lot less money spent. Elopements are very special because it’s entirely about celebrating the love and commitment being shared together. It’s for you two, no one else!
Say goodbye to stress, and say hello to unbelievable photos and a fun-filled day of memories. Yosemite will not disappoint!
I can help make your day exactly the way you envision and leave you with beautiful photographs that will last a lifetime. Learn more about me and what makes me different than other wedding photographers and get in touch.
To see more, here is a Yosemite elopement I photographed last Fall. Similarly, please check out more tips for how to plan an elopement and making your wedding day a more intimate affair.
Even if your elopement will only consist of you two, the photographer, and officiant, you still need a permit. U.S. National Parks allow ceremonies to take place on their grounds through a “special use’ permit which requires an upfront fee of $150 at Yosemite. If you risk it and don’t get a permit, think of how awful it would be to have to pause your big day if a ranger stops by to see your (nonexistent) permit? It’s not worth it. Plus the money goes towards the national parks!
Tip: Plan to submit your permit application a few months in advance just to be safe.
At 4,000 ft in Yosemite, most people will be fine, but it’s when you start to climb other spots such as Glacier Point where it gets iffy, especially if it’s hot! If you feel dizzy, sit down, take deep breaths and sip water. It’ll only last a few minutes, but it’s smart to take precautions and know beforehand it could happen to you!
– Change of clothes
– Hiking shoes / comfortable shoes
– Jacket / hoodie (mountains can get cold)
– Water (it's important to hydrate!)
– Snacks / Granola Bars / etc.
– Toilet paper / Wipes (bathrooms are scarce)
– Champagne / Wine and Glasses
– Props for photos (blanket, flowers, etc.)
– Flashlight (if you’re out near sunset)
– Umbrella/rain jacket if there’s a chance of rain