Mt. Baker Elopement
Forest Service and BLM Elopement Locations
When you think of Mt. Baker you may think of Washington winter sports, but it is also one of the most beautiful elopement locations in the state! Mount Baker is a part of the Forest Service Land which is, you guessed it, another great resource for searching out your own elopement location. The wilderness area of Mt. Baker surrounds the North Cascades National Park and sits on over 100,000 acres. You are bound to find your own slice of privacy if you choose to elope here. Besides privacy you will find thirteen glaciers and be surrounded by the fourth tallest peak in Washington. If you are looking for adventure on your wedding day, this mountain, or volcano really, will not disappoint! The forest offers great camp sites, beautiful lakes, beautiful pacific northwest waterfalls, winter sport activities, views beyond belief, and miles of epic trails. If you are looking for an elopement location that will stop you in your tracks and take the breath out of your lungs, you’re looking at it, folks. This place will make you feel so on top of the world and connected to your surroundings, which makes it a perfect spot to read your vows to your lover. Samantha, the beautiful lady in these pictures with her man Asa, kept saying “fairies must live up here” due to its insane beauty. Asa and Samantha have hiked these mountains for some time now. One of their dates early on in their relationship was on this mountain. Pro tip: Do not eat sushi on a date and then hike a mountain :)
Keep on scrolling for more information and elopement locations within Forest Service and BLM land. If you would like to scope out more information on Mount Baker check out the Forest Service website or epic adventure tips for this area on The Outbound’s website. Pro tip from the photographer/adventurer: I always search out the park or forest service land’s website first for any closure, permit or other important information when planning an elopement or heading out for adventure. Then my go-to is typically The Outbound for any advice from previous folks who have explored the area!
Forest Service and BLM land to Consider for your Elopement!
First off, what exactly is Forest Service land or BLM land??? The Forest Service land covers 154 national forests and 20 national grasslands, which encompass 193 million acres and is protected by the Department of Agriculture. BLM land covers 247.3 million acres and is managed by a branch of the goverment known as the Department of Interior. It is extremely important to practice Leave No Trace Behind Principals while visiting or eloping on these public lands. The great thing about eloping in these areas are often times they tend to be less crowded than National Parks and sometimes the State Parks, but can be equally as stunning landscapes and experiences for your elopement day. Since these public lands tend to be less built out and managed, you are more likely to be able to bring your pup-a-roos along on your elopement day. In most cases it is cheaper, if not free, to visit these areas. Just like an elopement within the National Parks, it is important to contact a ranger to make sure you do not need to apply for a permit and to get information on any other restrictions on where you can hold a ceremony if you are having guest along as well.
Maroon Bells in Aspen, Colorado - This could be one of the busiest Forest Services areas!! If you want to elope here, my biggest tip would be to elope at the very start of season before the bus starts running and on a weekday. This place is stunning and a few days here is sure to blow your mind. To see a honeymoon session shot here click here.
Imperial Sand Dunes in Southern California - These sand dunes may also be referred to Algodones Dunes. This mass of sand stretches over 40 miles and is a part of the BLM lands. At sunset it is quiet and stunning. It is also best to elope here on a weekday to avoid the avid ATV drivers. Check out an elopement from this location by clicking here.
Coconino National Forest in Sedona, Arizona - Often times, as a local of Arizona, it feels as if most of the state is National Forest land. The Coconino Forest stretches over pretty much all of Sedona and most of Flagstaff. The elopement locations in this stretch of land are endless. For one epic location you can hike or take a jeep off road to, click here.
Grand Staircase-Escalante National Monument in Southern Utah - Did you know over 40% of Utah is considered public land? The Grand Staircase is over one million acres of diverse desert land and meets Arizona by Lake Powell. There is endless opportunity here for one heck of an epic elopement!
Mt Hood National Forest in Central Oregon - If you hike Mount Rainier and look South on a clear day, that beautiful peak in the distance is Mt Hood. Another mountain known heavily for its winter sports, but man is she beautiful all throughout the year! Mount Hood is only a two hour drive from Portland, opening lots of options for things to do for your elopement day or weekend!
Gifford Pinchot National Forest in Washington - Part of the PCT runs through this vast forest in Washington. You may find lava, streams, waterfalls, bears or elk here! There are so many elopement locations to choose from within this forest!
Sierra National Forest in California - Does this area sound familiar?? Welp, within it you will find Yosemite National park and Kings Canyon National Park, but it also houses part of the PCT and John Muir trail. Stepping outside of the National parks and onto the public land may lead you to epic trails up stunning mountain sides from California to Nevada.
Just like last week’s blog post where I told you about some pretty magical State Park elopement locations, I could go on for days about all the specific locations you could consider. The advice I always give when it comes to planning your elopement and selecting a location is: stay true to yourself as a couple and communicate with your photographer. I hope this blog post was helpful or inspiring to you, feel free to reach out if you have any questions!