Jodi and Zach shared such special moments during this anniversary session in one of Arizona’s beautiful slot canyons.
So it turns out I LOVE the snow!! How about you??
Coming from Texas and Florida for my last four and half years of living I haven’t got to be around the snow much! Who would have thought my first big ‘blizzard’ since college would be in Arizona?!?! No one that’s for sure!
Enough about me though, I want to talk about you two!! So you’re engaged and you’re thinking of eloping! YAY!!! If you’re wanting that winter elopement do not rule out Arizona. Besides being in a state packed with hiking trails, rock climbing locations and endless adventure road trip destinations you probably won’t freeze to death here if you elope in the winter! You can get those snowy views and winter wonderlands at warmer temperatures! You are most likely to find snow in Payson, Flagstaff, Bisbee and the Grand Canyon. It is possible to get snow in Sedona, WIlliams, Prescott, Page and Jerome. My best advice for a couples looking to elope in Arizona during the winter wishing for snow would be to be prepared!! Go ahead and get your marriage license in advance and watch the weather to set a date. Once you have set a date stay flexible and be prepared to change the date for more snowfall, a different location or due to any road blocks.
Payson is a perfect place for a winter elopement or a snowy adventure session!! The drive to Payson from Phoenix takes on a whole new wow factor with the mountains covered in snow!! A lot of the areas to photograph you will pretty much have to yourself minus the few and far between snow mobile drivers. There is just something about all the pines, the sunshine and the snow that scream romance to me. Not to mention the possible sighting of elk! Rim country gets about 20 inches of snow each year so it really is probably the best option next to Flagstaff for that winter wonderland look.
If you get to see Sedona graced in snow you are so LUCKY!!! It really is one of the most beautiful sights I have seen in Arizona. Sedona snow fall is more unpredictable, but it does happen more than you would think! These shots were from the recent “blizzard” Sedona had, said to have been the most snow in many years! Low clouds moving through the red rocks with snow covering the trees and cacti is sure to make for a stunning photo background and romantic day together. Eloping in the snow typically sends my mind straight to Iceland, Colorado, Washington or the Grand Tetons. If you’re willing to put in the work with selecting date and being flexible I think Sedona would surpass your wildest imagination!
If you’re considering eloping in Arizona please reach out to me! I would love to be apart of your day and document your love story! If you’re thinking of eloping in Arizona during the winter I would love to share more tips with you about planning and accessing great locations for your elopement!
a year in review…
Welp….this is it, the last day of 2018! I always spend the last few days of the year to review the year and make plans for the new year.
I must say HOLY COW what a year!!!
The first part of the year I prepped for opening business and moving to Arizona. I drove across country with my two cats in my car arriving to my new life on Valentine’s day.
I jumped right in full force, my first week here I photographed an intimate wedding in Northern Phoenix and and in home maternity session. As the year went on I worked on building a portfolio of adventure elopement and anniversary sessions to show clients just some of the amazing options for their wedding day. I met A LOT of new people in the industry and outside of the industry, got to know my new city, did some intense continued education within the industry, determined a style and a brand and traveled a lot. In between it all, I even launched a wedding dress rental program for all of my elopement and intimate wedding brides. The year was BUSY and not at all what I thought it would be, but does anything go as we plan???
If you have ever moved out of state you know that the first year is usually….odd. Lol. It is a year of adjustment, change, learning and reworking relationships. It was not a easy year at all for me emotionally and I must say I am very excited for a new year. I think 2018 was my year of change, growth, grounding and wonder. I am hoping 2019 will be my year of growth, blossoming and success. I am so grateful for the clients I had this year, the new friends I have made here in Arizona, to live somewhere with mountains and for supportive family and friends.
I’m also so blessed to have found the path within photography that I am extremely PASSIONATE about!! Graduating college with a BFA in Photography only 4.5 years ago I had no idea what I was going to do to with it. I knew I liked working with people and helping style photo shoots, but that was it. I went to work for an RV company photographing product to then a studio and golf photography job. While I loved my job and doing the work the all-around passion was missing. I truly think I have found my home in photography and couldn’t be more excited to go into the next year with further knowledge I gained this year to help couples pick a location for the elopement, help them plan, give them tips on awesome local vendors, be able to help them with a wedding dress if they’re eloping on a shorter time frame and document the most special day of their lives.
Cheers, ya’ll to 2019!
I consider my first accomplishment of the year to be moving to Phoenix, Arizona. I can tell you first hand it really makes a huge difference to love where you live. Then would come the official launch of my business! I took a leap of faith and went from working at a commercial photography studio that mainly focused on golf to turning my focus to couple’s in the wild and photographing elopements!! I feel so honored to have been featured in my first year of business by Looks Like Film, Wandering Weddings, Tacari Weddings and interviewed by the Phoenix Voyage. I also launched a wedding dress rental program for all of my elopement brides!! I offer designer wedding dresses from size 0-10 that brides can select from without the time lines and stress of shopping at a store, not to mention saving closest space later. Of course, the overall achievement of surviving my first year in business.
Locations of 2018:
In 2018 I visited, scouted and photographed at the following locations: Joshua Tree National Park, Yosemite National Park, Lake Tahoe, Zion National Park, Bryce Canyon National Park, Anacortes, West Palm Beach, Flagstaff, Sedona, Hanging Rock State Park, South Carolina, Louisville, Southern California Sand Dunes, Arizona Rim Country and Coal Mine Canyon.
Upcoming Travel for 2019:
In 2019 I will be traveling to the following locations for elopements and intimate weddings: Lake Powell, Asheville, North Florida, Sedona and the list is growing. Some places on my travel list for the year not yet scheduled would be Smith Rock, Oregon, Grand Tetons National Park, Yosemite National Park, Colorado, Alaska, Mt. Rainer and of course Iceland (it is always on the list!)
I can’t wait to see where all 2019 takes me!
I am also excited to bring in the new year with a new logo!!
Be on the look out for some big things and new changes on the website. I'm so EXCITED for the new year!
Special thanks to the following folks for helping make 2018 not too shabby for my first year in Arizona: South Mountain Films, AZ Fleuristas, Ruthanne, Lauren Yvonne Design, my PHX ladies hiking group, Ashly, Shane Baker, Everardo, Jen Maclay, I Do Rentals, Platinum Medical Group, the Southwest PGA Section, ALL OF MY AMAZING CLIENTS, all the ladies that modeled my wedding dresses for launch, of course my handsome significant other, Shane Simmons and many more.
Arizona Adventure Elopement Photographer - Winter Proposal Ideas in Arizona
Proposal locations in the Phoenix area
Camel Back Mountain
Tis’ the season and propose at the top of Camelback Mountain. The Christmas tree is back this year! The tree will be on the top of Camelback until the day after Christmas and Santa will be making his sightings on the weekends. Cambelback is a staple hike in Phoenix so it can get crowded but it is so worth the views, plan accordingly. You can access the top by hiking Echo Canyon Trail or Cholla Trail. Be sure to finish your hike by sunset due to the parks closure. This hike leads you to a perfect place for an adventurous proposal if you’re trying to stay out of the cold.
Desert Botanical Gardens
The Desert Botanical Gardens is a perfect place for a proposal anytime of the year, but if you’re trying to avoid the cold this winter it is even better! Came during the day for a lovely stroll through the park or come by the night and enjoy the Electric Desert Light Show. Either way the gardens is bound to offer a quiet place to pop the question without the hike. (Please note they only allow dogs in the park during certain events throughout the year).
Not sold yet that Phoenix could offer the best location for your holiday or winter proposal??? Here are a few other locations around the city! Piestewa Peak is another hard trail, but being the third highest peak in Phoenix it would also offer great views for a proposal. While the Salt River is drained at this time of year it still offers that magically touch seeing the wild horses and stunning sunset colors. You can also take a horse ride through the Saguaro Ranch Stables. Can you say it’s a date?! Or make it a date weekend! Camp in Cave Creek Regional Park and spend your weekend camping, hiking, sitting by a fire and enjoying the quaint area of downtown Cave Creek with bull riding, line dancing and great food.
Northern Arizona Winter Proposal Locations
Just a short drive from the Phoenix area (1.5 hours) you find Payson home of the pines as I like to say. The Payson area is filled with amazing adventure spots like the Tonto National Bridge, Fossil Creek and several lakes. A killer view and romantic spot for a winter proposal in Payson would for sure be the the mogollon rim. No hike required and I imagine it would be the perfect spot to cuddle up for a romantic winter picnic leading to the big question. Be sure to check the weather conditions and road conditions before setting out!
Check out this video below of slight snow from the mogollon rim:
Sedona is a hiking mecca, climber’s dream and a travel destination. If you’re a local or a tourist it is a super romantic spot for a proposal and even more so in the winter. From long hikes in the snow, to romantic dinners or short hikes with amazing views you can not go wrong. If you’re up for the hike some that I recommend are Seven pools, Devil’s Bridge and West Fork.
Check out this video of a snowy Sedona!
Flagstaff is one of those places that gets me feeling like a little kid on Christmas morning. Flagstaff may be the ultimate location for an Arizona winter proposal. While the roads to Lockett Meadow or closed there still endless options! Check out snowbowl, where you can go skiing, ride the ski lift or just check out those snowy mountain views. There are lots of other trails, destinations and romantic dinner options in the area so well. Not sure?? Does the word cabin excite you? Imagine renting a cabin and enjoying a wood fire with the snow and stars all around you before popping the question.
To track snow in the snowbowl area check out this link!
THE Grand Canyon
I didn’t think about the Grand Canyon as a winter destination until I moved here and now I can not wait to see it graced with snow!! It is a perfect day trip from Phoenix and a grand way to propose :) While the snow is mostly during the months of Jan. and Feb. we have already had snow fall this winter season.
Check out this video from a snowy Grand Canyon WITH elk!
While this is only a few of the many stunning places in Arizona that are perfect for a winter proposal I hope that this helps you in your planning to ask for your partner’s hand in marriage!
Please remember that if you decided to head to Northern Arizona to pop the question to check the weather conditions and road conditions. Feel free to pop the champagne and celebrate, but remember these beautiful natural habitats are fragile, please practice leave no trace behind.
As always, yes! I will hike with you! Do not miss the chance to document this important stage in your life. I am available to photograph your proposal anywhere in the state of Arizona :)
These locations are not only just right for a winter Arizona proposal, but also a winter elopement or engagement session!
It is me here to say thank you for reading my blog and hope that you enjoyed it! Feel free to leave a comment below about your proposal story to inspire others! Guys, I am always here to help out on this special moment in your lives. Feel free to reach out, having a photographer there can be a complete surprise and secret until after you have proposed or it can be a helping tool to getting to the question. Come snow, rain, night fall or any hike I am ready and excited to be on the adventure with you two!
Winter Elopement Locations - Adventure Elopement Photographer based in Phoenix, AZ
Hey it’s me here!
I am here to tell you that Winter is still a perfect time of year for your elopement, just check out all of these desert locations!! I recently ventured off to Zion and Bryce Canyon National Parks to hike Angel’s Landing and check out other trails for elopements. I was so excited to see this little spot in Bryce that is perfect for a ceremony if you plan to bring a couple of very important people along to witness the vows. Bryce and Zion are still great elopement locations for a winter elopement, the nights are quiet cold, but the day can be warm. Depending on the day you can catch snow in Bryce, which means cold, yes, but BEAUTIFUL! Tis’ the season right??
Heading more South into Arizona, you have Sedona, Grand Canyon, Tuscon and Petrified Forest National Park as great locations during the winter. If you do want snow but not those negative numbers you may get in other states or countries this time of year then Flagstaff and Payson are perfect options. Heading to Southern California I also recommend Joshua Tree for the winter. Once again it can get cold during the night, but after a perfect day who doesn’t want to cuddle up in a cozy Airbnb?
Thinking of eloping this Holiday season or just during the Winter months in general??? Shoot me an email! I would be happy to chat with you! I have availability over the holidays and in the coming months. Need a dress on short notice?? Do not worry, I have you covered. Check out the designer dresses I have for rent for my adventure elopement brides!
Want to adventure and get married in the most epic winter wonderland???
Arizona Adventure Elopement Photographer - Sedona Elopement Photographer - Couples that Elope - Engaged Now What
Hey! It’s me here to tell you more about the couple’s that elope!
Recently, I took a trip back home to the East coast. I received lots of questions about why I chose to be an elopement photographer. I also often receive questions here in Arizona about what an elopement is. I find that there is a BIG misconception about elopements and the couples that choose to elope. I often get questions like, aren’t they just running away? Aren’t these couples trying to get married as cheap as possible? Aren’t these just courthouse weddings? Do they even want photos?
The answers to the questions couldn’t be more of no! I find that the couples that are eloping are not running away, but simply choosing a different route to get married. Weddings come with big expectations, lots of planning, lots of eyes on you all day, your entire wedding day is spent with other s and running around fulfilling a plan. For some people this is fantastic and they have always dreamed of this big day. For others, that sounds exhausting and cold. During an adventure elopement the couple gets to spend a lot of quality time together. Vows read in private can be a quick few minutes or an intimate moment cherished. It is private and romantic. They are free to have all their emotions spill out intimately.
I also find that a lot of couples that elope value the photography of their big day just the same if not more than traditional weddings. Elopements allow a lot more freedom in general, but especially for creative images. Elopements are more likely to have more photography in more of a fine art form with grand landscapes. I also, would disagree with most elopement couples taking the cheaper way out. Some couples that elope have already planned an entire large wedding with all the bells and whistles then decide to go a more intimate route. A lot of couples that elope are often traveling to their location. I rarely find that they go any cheaper on the dress, florals or other things. It is most definitely cheaper because there is no venue and you’re not paying to feed 100 guests. There are plus and minuses to the cost, but I would not say cost is a defining factor in the choice to elope.
Now, the big when and where of elopements! Majority of couples that elope you see in grand places like Yosemite and Horseshoe Bend. You may be thinking to yourself, wow I am not an avid hiker and that looks intimidating. Do not let this turn you away from choosing to elope! A lot of elopement photographers have lots of location options ranging from half mile hikes to ten mile hikes to location ranging from easy to hard. Some couples even rock climb to their location! This does not mean that you must do this too. A lot of the couples hike together often, spend lots of time outdoors, but a lot of couples it is less about the outdoors and more about the intimacy. The when and where is where it is super important in choosing an elopement photographer and communicating with them a lot to ensure a day that is perfect for you!
The overall take away about couples that elope and choosing to elope is that it is a day for you and your partner, just you two or a few select people super important to your partnership. The options are endless to have a day completely your way, where you want, when you want and how you want. Elopements are about adventuring as a couple into life together <3
These are couples just like you, madly in love with each other and the wild. <3
Special thanks to Ruthanne for the portrait of myself :)