groom and bride hold hands and look at the sunset during olympic national park elopement

Olympic National Park Elopement Photographer

The Olympic Peninsula and the Olympic National Park are some of the most beautiful and wild areas in the Pacific Northwest. You’re so far from big cities that you have space to breathe and live your joyful life. It’s an epic place of fantasy [insert obligatory Twilight reference here], but also a place of wonder, beauty, and connection to the world around us. With that, it’s an incredible place to elope. 

Before we get too deep into the guide, if you’re interested in chatting about my photography services for your elopement, they start at $5000 for all-day coverage or $2500 for smaller coverage (prices include lodging/travel fees). Let’s talk about your plan, and how to make sure the day is documented. 

Also, I have guides for elopements in the North Cascades, San Juan Islands, your Backyard and the Oregon Coast.

couple holds hands in the woods during elopement

Why You Should Have an Olympic Peninsula Elopement

First, let’s talk about the Olympic National Park itself. It is the biggest and most visited national park in Washington State. This surprised me because I thought the popularity and closeness to major cities would have given Mt. Rainier the edge.

The Olympics have so much to offer, and a lot of ways to enter the park. You might be coming for a woodsy hike at Staircase, windswept mountaintops at Hurricane Ridge, a dip in the Sol Duc hot springs, the rich greens of the Hoh rainforest, or a backpacking trip through it all. People are drawn to it because this place has so much to offer.

The headliner is typically the mountains, and there are few places that are as wild and accessible as Hurricane Ridge. It is stunningly beautiful. Just a few steps from the parking lot, you’re in the middle of the mountain range, all by yourself. As a kid, I gave my sister a fear of heights by startling her on a ridge trail up there (sorry, Callie!). But even if you’re just at the visitors’ center, you will be greeted with more views and beauty than you can imagine. It’s just so accessible.

motion in dress during sunset elopement

If you want to dig deeper into the Olympics, then there are thousands of miles of trails—and thousands of vertical miles to climb up and down the peaks. You can crisscross, scale, and get lost in the world with nothing but yourself and the mountain goats. Plus, the true wilderness is just a few more steps down the trail.

One of the most unique spots in the Olympics is the Sol Duc Hot Springs. This naturally hot bath is a perfect spot in the middle of the woods to be calmed and warmed by the waters. How many places can you go on a hike to and finish with a soak?

Outside the National Park, you’ll find a few lovely and rich lakes on the peninsula. The most popular are Lake Crescent, Lake Quinault, and Lake Cushman. All three offer beautiful spots to relax, paddle, and enjoy the glacier-cut lakes, with the mountains soaring high above.

The Washington Coast on the Olympic Peninsula is a magical and mystical place. In Second Beach and Ruby, sea stacks and rocks pop out of the sand. The waves crash; the weather changes and you are left feeling truly in awe of the power of the ocean as you watch the sunset.

bride and groom on path during elopement

The Pacific Northwest is known for being a wet place, but no place is as wet as the Hoh Rainforest. A walk under the old, overgrown trees and thick moss will show you how much water is captured there, and how that gives way to the richest flora the area has to offer.

Most people have been on a boat at some point and jokingly stood on the bow, like Jack and Rose in Titanic. It’s wild to be right in front and feel like you’re all alone, standing at the edge of the world. Well, what if instead of a boat, you could have that feeling on land? That’s what Cape Flattery feels like to me. It’s the most Northwestern point of the continental United States, and as you stand there, facing the Pacific with the whole country behind you, the wild winds and waves wrapping around you, it feels like you’re all alone in this adventure.

Besides all the beautiful landscapes, the Olympic Peninsula is full of quirks that make it a special place: the city of Forks, which has embraced its place in Twilight lore; renting a tour bus to camp along the waterfront; eating at roadside diners; the rain-shadow of Sequim, and so much more.

Now booking 2023 and 2024 weddings and elopements

Whether you just are wondering about pricing or you want to have an in-depth discussion about veil styles, let’s start chatting.

All-day weddings start at $4500, 3-hour elopements start at $2500.

Bride holds modern grass bouquet during Salt Creek elopement on the Olympic National Park

How to Choose a Location for Your Olympic National Park Adventure Elopement

With all the diversity of the area, it’s almost overwhelming to pick a spot for your Olympic Peninsula elopement. There are just too many awesome spots! But here are a few of the most popular places, and why you might want to choose them. 

When deciding, consider the questions I always ask: “What would you do if your elopement weren’t being photographed? If it were just you and your partner getting married, what would you choose? Where would you go? What would you want to feel?” With that as a guide, you can pick a spot that feels truly special to you, and we can make beautiful photos that you’ll cherish forever.

I love helping folks plan their elopements, so don’t hesitate to reach out even if you just have questions or need advice.

couple kisses in front of a frame during elopement

Hurricane Ridge

note: Hurricaine Ridge is closed for summer 2023 following a fire at the lodge. You can still hike up there, but the road is closed after Heart O’ the Hills campground. I would suggest finding alternative locations for wedding photos for now.

Best Season: June—October

Drive time from Seattle: 3 hours

When most people think of the Olympics, Hurricane Ridge is the first thing that comes to mind. This spot is only 40 minutes from Port Angeles but is in the middle of the mountains. There are epic vistas that go deep into the park or out across the Strait of Juan de Fuca, all the way to Canada. With open meadows, trails, and so many places to tuck away in, it is a great spot for a personal and private ceremony in the National Park (Note: See permit rules). 

Also, like many places in national parks, if you venture more than a quarter-mile away from the visitors’ center, you will find much more seclusion and space to yourself. Erika and I joke that they’re called “national parks” because people put their car in park and just stay there. Walk a bit, and you’ll have it to yourself.

Although Hurricane Ridge is usually best during the summer months, the visitors’ center is open year-round. During the winter season (December—February), the area is usually open from 9 AM—4 PM, but this depends on the weather, snow plowing, and avalanche warnings. Follow the Hurricane Ridge Winter Twitter Account for daily information.

mountain lake olympic national park elopement

Olympic Coastal Beaches 

The beaches of the Olympic Peninsula are unparalleled. There are few places in the Pacific Northwest that feel so untamed. You’re always at the mercy of the powerful Pacific Ocean, and this can make your elopement feel very intimate. Below are some of the most famous beaches in the area but know there are many more options and ways to enjoy your time on the beach. 

Keep in mind the changing tides. (You can find all you need at this page.) As with most of the Washington coast, it is great during any season because there is no “really nice” season. Whether you go in January or August, it might be 60 degrees and sunny; it might be a torrential downpour. It might be both! 

Second Beach Elopement

Best Season: April—October

Drive time from Seattle: 4 hours (including ferry ride)

Second Beach is one of the most famous beaches in the area. The short half-mile hike in from the parking area is easy, but it quickly makes you feel like you’re a world away. The beach is fairly large, with a big sandy area (especially during low tide). There are also a lot of various rock formations, including a few holes in the wall, which are really cool. First Beach (with its famous tree stump) is also nearby, or you can hike a little farther to Third Beach (less popular for elopements, due to the hike).

A few years back, I spent a night at Second Beach and made a fun little video about it. 

Note: Second Beach is on the Quileute Reservation and is currently closed, due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Ruby Beach Elopement

Best Season: April

Drive time from Seattle: 3.5 hours via Olympia; 4.5 hours via Port Angeles (including ferry ride)

Ruby Beach is a great spot for an elopement, due to its easy access from the parking lot. You just have to walk down the hill, and you’re there. There are beautifully washed stones higher on the beach, and sandy areas at low tide. There is also a stream that creates beautiful framing around the prominent rocks. There are also really accessible areas with epic rocks. It’s just a dream for diverse options while still being easy to get to. You can’t go wrong with a Ruby Beach Elopement.

Note: This area is open during the COVID-19 pandemic, but that does increase crowds—especially during weekends or good weather.

couple kisses double exposure ruby beach elopement in olympic national park

Kalaloch Beach

Best Season: April—October

Drive time from Seattle: 3 hours 15 minutes via Olympia, 4.5 hours via Port Angeles (including ferry ride)

Kalaloch is also famous for its floating tree. You have to be careful with this iconic photo spot, but it’s really fun to include such a wonderful element in the images. It is also a great spot for elopements, due to its easy access to four separate sections of the beach. This means you can easily find a spot to elope in that will feel like your own private part of the Olympic Peninsula.

Aside from the beach itself, Kalaloch is a great option for an elopement because of the Kalaloch Lodge and nearby campground.

Note: This area is open during the COVID-19 pandemic, but that does increase crowds—especially during weekends or good weather.

Shi Shi Beach

Best Season: April—October

Drive time from Seattle: 4 hours 40 minutes via Port Angeles (including ferry ride)

Although the eight-mile round-trip hike to Shi Shi might seem a little daunting, the rock formations on this beach are truly spectacular. It’s one of the most unique areas—especially with the deep cuts that face the islands.

To access any beach or recreation area on the Makah Reservation, a pass must be purchased from the tribe. These are easily available on their website or from vendors in Neah Bay. These will also give you access to Cape Flattery.

Note: Shi Shi Beach is on the Makah Reservation and is currently closed, due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Rialto Beach

Best Season: April—October

Drive time from Seattle: 4 hours via Port Angeles (including ferry ride)

Rialto Beach is a popular spot for elopements because it is very accessible. Just a few steps from the parking lot, and a quick scramble over some fallen logs, and you’ll find yourself on a rocky beach. You can continue the one-mile hike down the beach to the hole-in-the-wall area with more large rock formations or just enjoy the waves.

Cape Flattery Elopement

Best Season: April—October

Drive time from Seattle: 4.5 hours (including ferry ride)

Cape Flattery is the most Northwestern spot in the continental United States. The rock formations in this literal upper-left corner of the country are incredible; the waves whip through, and the views are spectacular. There are a couple of small spots along the way for an elopement, but this spot itself is only encouraged for very intimate celebrations. 

To access any beach or recreation area on the Makah Reservation, a pass must be purchased from the tribe. These are easily available from their website or from vendors in Neah Bay. These will also give you access to Shi Shi Beach.

Note: Cape Flattery is on the Makah Reservation and is currently closed, due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

couple walks together along lake Crescent elopement

Lake Crescent Elopement

Best Season: June—October

Drive time from Seattle: 3 hours

Lake Crescent is a beautiful spot for elopements. It’s a very deep glacier-cut lake with views of the Olympic Mountains above. You want to find yourself out on the water and in the middle of the woods. 

Lake Crescent is also surrounded by great Airbnb options, or the Lake Crescent Lodge, which has an Insta-famous dock. There are also campgrounds in the area.

(Note: Completely unrelated, if you’re a runner, then you need to run the Adventure Segment of the Olympic Discovery Trail. It’s easily accessible from the north shore of the lake and offers some of the most pristine and beautiful single-track running I’ve ever done.)

Mt Storm King adventure elopement

Best Season: June—October

Drive time from Seattle: 3 hours

With an epic sunset view of Lake Crescent to the west, it’s a beautiful spot to stand on top of the world and elope with a view.

Note: Although the hike is only four miles roundtrip, it does contain 2000 vertical feet. So, keep that in mind when planning your elopement at the top.

couple kisses by mountain lake

Lake Quinault wedding

Best Season: June—October

Drive time from Seattle: 3 hours

Lake Quinault is a glacier-cut lake on the southwest edge of the Olympic National Park. The lake is large and offers hiking and beautiful views from every point. 

Due to its proximity to Lake Quinault Lodge, there are also options for a more traditional wedding reception at the lodge itself (or just a place to stay).

Note: Lake Quinault is one of the wettest places in which you can consider having an elopement.

Lake Cushman

Best Season: June—October

Drive time from Seattle: 3 hours

Found in the southeast corner of the Olympic National Park, Lake Cushman is a beautiful spot for your elopement. Although there are limited amenities, there are beautiful options for Airbnbs or to elope in the National Park at Staircase.

Hoh Rainforest elopement

Best Season: June—October

Drive time from Seattle: 4 hours

One of the most popular areas in the Olympic National Park (but also one of the most unique places around), the Hoh Rainforest receives 12 feet of rain every year. It is so rich and beautifully green. There are plenty of spots in and around the visitors’ center to have a small elopement ceremony. 

Strait of Juan de Fuca

Best Season: June—October

Drive time from Seattle: 3 hours

There are a lot of spots along the Strait of Juan de Fuca to have elopements in, from intimate Airbnbs to open beaches for larger groups. There are also campgrounds and lodges. A few highlights are the Dungeness Spit and Salt Creek.

Sol Duc hot springs wedding

Best Season: June—October

Drive time from Seattle: 4 hours

Aside from the hot springs, you’re in the middle of the woods at Sol Duc. You can’t help but feel connected to the trees, the falls, and the earth below. You’ll get glimpses of Mt Olympus, and you can cross the Sol Duc Falls for beautiful vistas.

Note: Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, access to the mineral pools is only available for overnight guests of the lodge.

groom and bride together

In Which Season Should You Have Your Olympic National Park and Peninsula Elopement?

As with most of Washington State, the best season for adventures is May through September (especially July through September). This is especially true if you don’t want to deal with snow at higher elevations (e.g., Hurricane Ridge). 

However, if you’re looking to elope on the coast, then conditions are a little different. The Washington coast is notoriously volatile. I’ve been on the coast for Christmas, and it was 60 degrees and sunny! I’ve also been out there in August, and it was 45 degrees and rainy. Sometimes, you’ll get both of those within a span of 10 minutes! The weather coming off the Pacific Ocean can change in a moment. So, my best suggestion is to do what you want—but be prepared for anything!

What Permits Are Necessary for an Olympic National Park Elopement?

For an elopement or wedding within the Olympic National Park (including on the coastal beaches), a Special Use Permit is required. That permit can be downloaded here, but it’s also recommended to email the park to discuss the rules, as well (especially during the COVID-19 pandemic). Plan ahead with the permit. These are only good for a year, so finish the paperwork as soon as possible.

If you want to elope somewhere else on the Olympic Peninsula (not within the National Park lands), then a permit is not necessary. Within Washington State, a wedding can happen anywhere that isn’t specifically prohibited.

If you want to have an elopement at an Airbnb or other rental, then it is advised to notify the owner before the wedding. The owner may charge additional fees, but there is also precedent for weddings to be cancelled or have much larger fines tacked on later.

Keep in mind that the permit is only good for the ceremony. If you need to pay for parking in the area in which you’re eloping, then parking passes will need to be purchased per car. All parking can be covered by an America the Beautiful Pass from the National Park Service, although you do not need to pay for individual entrance to the park, like you do at other national parks in Washington State (e.g., North Cascades National Park, Mt. Rainier National Park, Mt. St. Helens National Monument).

If you’re hosting the elopement outside national park grounds, then you will not need a permit for the wedding. Most hikes and/or national forest areas are covered by either the Northwest Forest Pass or the America the Beautiful Pass. 

If you want to get married at a state or other local park, then you should reach out to the administration of the individual park. There may be a necessary fee for reservations or access. State park access is usually given via the Discovery Pass.

couple runs on the beach on film during olympic national park elopement

Choosing an Olympic National Park Elopement Photographer

When picking a photographer for your wedding day, you should find someone who makes images that match your vision for the day. 

I will admit that my style isn’t for everyone, but I am here to help you plan your day. That means planning a story that is connected to your love and documenting it in a way that will not just remind you of what happened on your wedding day, but help you feel what you felt all over again. I make images that hold true to the feeling of what actually happened, with color correction that is modern but not overedited. We’re going to use film, be creative, respect the world around us, and make memories that will last forever.

It’s also okay to find someone else. A lot of folks in the Pacific Northwest are great adventure-elopement photographers; it’s most important to find one who connects with you.

Olympic National Park Elopement Packages

I offer elopement packages for the Olympic Peninsula. The most popular option is my all-day package. When I say all-day, I really mean it. I’ll be there from when events start and stay until they stop. I’m here for you to document all that your day has to hold. This is a great option if you want to make photographs at multiple locations in the Olympic Peninsula or have a portrait session along with a reception.

I also offer a 3 hour small elopement package as well. These are perfect for smaller events at just one location. Both options include travel and lodging costs.

Note: There may be additional fees for permits or other events (depending on what the elopement plan is) but just know that I’m here to help you choose an option that fits your needs and budget. Let’s chat more!

Copule kisses

Olympic National Park Wedding Cost

An Olympic National Park elopement can be a very economical option, but it can also be as big as you can dream up! Due to the natural beauty of the area, you can opt for simple decor and minimal extras, thereby bringing the cost of an elopement down to the $6-8K range (including photography), or you can opt for a more luxurious ceremony in the $12K (including photography, food, etc.). 

Couple stand together Olympic Coast elopement

Leave No Trace 

Anytime you’re planning to go into the wilderness (whether it’s a mountaintop or a beach), it’s a good idea to review the Leave No Trace principles, but it is especially important when planning your elopement. The seven principles are:

  1. Plan ahead.
  2. Travel and sleep on stable surfaces.
  3. Dispose of waste properly.
  4. Leave what you find.
  5. Minimize campfire impacts.
  6. Respect wildlife.
  7. Be considerate of others.

Keep all these in mind when planning your elopement. As we plan your elopement (and during the celebration), I will do all that I can to help you stay within these guidelines. We will take photos that celebrate the natural beauty of the Olympic Peninsula, but we will also take all precautions to care for the world while doing so. We’ve got this, together.

Couple stands by reflecting pond during Olympic National Park elopement

How to get to your Olympic Peninsula elopement?

The Olympic Peninsula is large. Deceptively large. From Seattle, it would take 8-10 hours to drive all the way around. So, keep that in mind when picking your location. If you’re considering multiple locations, then I would suggest picking spots that are within an hour of each other, but keep in mind that it is going to take 2-4 hours to get there, as well. 

Most popular elopement locations on the Olympic Peninsula are easily accessible with any vehicle. Not many places require high-clearance vehicles (the exception being if you wanted a wintertime elopement at Hurricane Ridge). Although not always necessary, having AWD options can be helpful. The short answer is you’re going to drive a lot! If you have guests flying in, then make sure that they rent a car.

couple holds hands in sunset during ruby beach elopement

Where to Stay for your elopement


  • Lake Quinault Lodge: A beautiful spot run by the National Park Service in the southwest corner of the park. The rooms are in the lodge, but there are other areas by the lake that are modern-rustic. There are lake views, and even some clawfoot hot tubs!
  • Kalaloch Lodge: One of the only hotels in the middle of the Olympic Coast, it sits on a bluff over the beach and has everything you need for an unplugged experience (i.e., no cell service, no Wi-Fi). Owned by the National Park service.
  • Mossquach Resort: Off-the-grid cabins and rooms in the middle of the woods. Just outside Forks, with easy access to the beach or the Hoh Rainforest. You can even have the wedding onsite with multiple rentals.
  • Red Lion Port Angeles: A great hotel option in the heart of historic Port Angeles. Easy access to Hurricane Ridge and the ferry to Victoria, BC.
  • Pacific Inn Hotel: A classic American motel in Forks, just minutes from Rialto Beach, Second Beach, and the Hoh Rainforest.
  • Ocean Crest Resort: A motel near the ocean in Moclips, WA. 
  • Robinhood Village: A fun and woodsy Hood Canal destination. Easy access to Staircase, Lake Cushman, and Mt. Elinor. (Note: See Skip and Suzy’s Wedding.)
  • Alderbrook Resort: A modern and beautiful resort on the Hood Canal. Easy access to Staircase, Lake Cushman, and Mt. Elinor.
  • 7 Cedars Casino: A modern casino in Sequim. Easy access to Dungeness Spit, Hurricane Ridge, and the entire Strait of Juan de Fuca.



  • Salt Creek: County park. Has lots of RV or tent-camping options. There is also a great beach for daytime usage. (Note: I’ve stayed here. It’s awesome).
  • Whiskey Creek : Whether you want to stay in a cabin, tent, your own RV, or a rented tour bus, this place has it all. It’s intimate, fun, and right on the water. (Note: I’ve stayed here. It’s awesome).
  • Dungeness Forks: One of the smallest and most intimate campgrounds in the national forest.
  • Deer Park: High in the mountains (5400’) and in the middle of nowhere. No RV access, but all the stars you can imagine!
  • Hoh: Green trees and beautiful views.
  • Kalaloch: Campground right on the edge of the Pacific Ocean.
  • Sol Duc: Camp in your tent by the river or in an RV. During non-COVID times, you can also access the mineral pools. (Note: Currently only available to resort guests.)
  • Staircase : Old-growth forest with access to hikes through the southeastern corner of the Olympic National Park.
  • Hobuck: On the Makah Nation’s land, with easy access to both Shi Shi Beach and Cape Flattery. Camping or cabin options available. (Note: Currently closed, due to the COVID-19 pandemic.)

Nearby Cities:

  • Sequim: A cute little city, and one of the first towns you’ll come to when crossing the Hood Canal Bridge (going clockwise around the peninsula). It’s in the rain-shadow of the Olympic Mountains, which means it is typically sunny. Well-known for the Olympic Game Farm and the lavender farms.
  • Port Angeles: A classic downtown city. The last “big” town on your way around the Olympic Peninsula. It is also where the ferry to Victoria, BC sets sail.
  • La Push and Forks: Small towns that have embraced their Twilight fame. They also have easy access to Rialto, First Beach, and Second Beach.
  • Seabrook: A community created along the Washington coast, near Moclips. It’s a great spot to rent a single house or to have larger weddings at the Town Hall.
  • Ocean Shores: A classic coastal town with a boardwalk, and all the saltwater taffy you can hope for!
  • Aberdeen: A large Central Washington logging town with easy access to all of Grays Harbor. It is also the entrance to the Olympic Peninsula (when going counterclockwise).

What to wear during an Olympic Peninsula elopement

I’m not going to be the fashion guru to help you pick out your wedding attire. I’ll admit that I wear black jeans 95% of the time because I don’t have to think about it. But, when you’re having an adventure wedding somewhere beautiful, there are a few things to consider. Beyond looking great, I’d suggest that you pick wedding dresses and suits that are easy to carry, put on, and move in. You’ll also want clothes that don’t wrinkle easily (especially if you’ll be packing them in and changing on location) as well as easy to wear additional layers under or over (this is the Olympics, so it probably will rain at some point). Also, when hiking, have good shoes. Whether you change them or not is up to you, but be safe when on trails and good footwear does a lot to help that.

For more thoughts about attire, I wrote a full blog post about it.

Bride and groom kiss in cabin during olympic national park elopement

Suggested vendors for Olympic National Park elopement

It’s a little wilder out there. So, not all vendors can make it out to various sites. It’s important to plan and pick vendors that can provide service in that area. Some vendors are in the Puget Sound, while others are from Sequim, Port Angeles, or Aberdeen/Hoquiam. I tried to label where everyone is from.

Hair and Makeup: I wrote a full blog on this, but I definitely recommend talking to Ashleigh Victoria Styling, Kaboom (Sequim), and/or It’s Likely Makeup by Min (Port Angeles, specifically only 30 min from Hurricane Ridge). It is always a good idea to make sure that your makeup artist has experience with your skin tone.

Planners: PinkBlossom Events, Pacific Engagements

Officiant: Happy Heart

Dressmakers: BHLDN, The Dress Theory, Grace Loves Lace, Emily Riggs 

Videographers: Becca Neblock, Weiss Films

Livestream:, Simply Eloped 

Florists: Fire & Blooms (Sequim), Annie’s Flower Farm (Sequim), Fullness & Joy Floral (Port Angeles), Harbor Blooms (Aberdeen)

DJs: DJ Headsmile, DJ Jason Hopper 

Cake: Wildflower Cakes

Caterers/Food Trucks: Table Catering, Miere Catering and other food truck options

Couple kisses during sunset elopement on film

Are Dogs Allowed on the Olympic Peninsula?

It’s totally normal that you want to include your pup in your wedding day. If you’re getting married at a private space or in one of the state or county parks, you should be totally fine.

Dogs are not permitted outside parking lots in national parks, including the coastal beaches. There are a few trails on which they are allowed, but those are very limited. In the areas where dogs are allowed, they are required to be on a leash.

couple walks through hoh rainforest during elopement

How many guests can I have at my Olympic National Park elopement?

Most elopements on the Olympic Peninsula are pretty small. As with anything, the farther away and the wilder your location is, the fewer people can be a part of it. So, if you’re getting hitched on a beach or on top of Mt Storm King, then you might not be able to bring Grandma, but that intimacy is one of the main draws of the area.

If you want to have a larger elopement, then sticking to a more public spot (e.g., Hurricane Ridge) or one of the lodges (e.g., Lake Quinault Lodge) would serve you better. Most can easily accommodate a 20-40-person wedding, and some spots might even go larger. Also, the main lodges and national park visitors’ centers will have ADA accessibility that is not typically found in the rest of the area.

couple hugs on beach during whiskey creek elopement at olympic national park

Obtaining a Marriage License for Your Olympic Peninsula Elopement

Marriage licenses must be obtained in Washington State at least three days before the elopement day. They can be obtained in the county building of any county in Washington. They are valid anywhere in Washington State. If you are a Washington resident, then it is easiest to get your license in your home county, and then bring it to your Olympic Peninsula elopement. Note: See my How to elope in Washington blog for more info.

If you’re traveling to Washington for the wedding, then make sure you arrive at least three days before your elopement, so you can get the paperwork right away. It is easiest for travelers to get it in Seattle, which is only a short train ride from SeaTac Airport. 

I have another blog with more info on all the legal information.

Bride's elopement dress at Whiskey creek on the Olympic Peninsula

What Do I Need to Bring for My Olympic Peninsula Elopement?

How many times have we stood around, looking at our bags, wondering if we severely under or overpacked? None of us want to arrive at our destination and realize we’ve gotten it wrong.

Packing for your Olympic Peninsula elopement will vary, depending on the kind of day you’re planning (e.g., a beach elopement vs. a hiking destination), but here are a few things that you should have with you, no matter what:

  • Marriage license 
  • Any needed passes/permits, such as:
    • National Park Pass
    • Special-Use Permit
    • Northwest Forest Pass
    • Discovery Pass
  • Snacks
  • Drinks
  • Garbage bags (for trash or extra rain protection if needed)
  • Layered clothing
  • Headlamps
  • Props (e.g., a “Just Married” sign)
  • Good shoes
  • The 10 Essentials
  • Your sense of adventure!

I know we’ve covered a lot of these throughout the list, but they’re all important. Bring garbage bags to pack up all your trash. Be prepared for cold and wet weather. You’ll be in the mountains in the Pacific Northwest, so the weather can change quickly. It’s annoying but having a lot of light layers to put on or remove is always more useful than one jacket that may be too warm (or not warm enough!). 

Couple stands together during olympic peninsula elopement on the beach

Parting Thoughts

More than anything, know that I’m here for you. We’re going to plan this adventure to be everything you want it to be. We’re here to tell your story and put art on your walls that will illustrate your love to everyone who sees it.