Laura & Drew
An early start with a huge reward
Have you ever experienced something so wonderful, you replay it in your head over and over?
We met Laura and Drew at the trailhead at 3:30am, and began our hike in the dark with only headlamps lighting the way. Our goal? To reach the Mount Fremont lookout before the sun rose, so they could say their elopement vows with the colorful peak of Mount Rainier lighting up behind them. As we went, we began to just make out the silhouette of Rainier, and see the few tiny little lights that signified climbers making their ascent to the top. We went on, knowing that something beautiful was in store for us in just a short time. Light began to hit the peak of the mountain, but the sun had not yet risen. There was just a faint, blue glow reflecting off the glaciers as we spotted our destination in the distance.
The last stretch of hiking followed a ridge line shielded from light, so it was not until we made it to our goal that we were able to fathom the full scope of our journey. The lookout tower, perched at the end of that ridge, with an ocean of cloud layer resting below us. We watched the skies change – the alpenglow transition from blue to pink, to bright orange, and finally to white as the sun fully began to show itself. Our way back down was met with surprise mountain goats and endless fields of wildflowers, which we had walked by wholly unaware just a few hours prior. This was a morning worth remembering.
Why Elope at Sunrise?
It’s mornings like this that come to mind when I pitch sunrise elopements to couples hoping to visit iconic spots, but don’t want to sacrifice intimacy and privacy. Mount Rainier National Park was in the midst of peak wildflower season, and since this area of the park is only accessible by car in the summer, these trails can be heavily trafficked during the day. Even at sunrise, we had fellow hikers enjoying the views alongside us, but it was nothing compared to the visitors during the day and evening! Hiking up in the dark let’s you experience a trail like this two ways. There is nothing more breathtaking than the brilliant display of sunrise alpenglow. You’ll still have your entire day ahead of you to celebrate, relax, or continue on to your next adventure.
We wanted to extend a shout out to our good friends at Cabana. Trevor and I have researched so many camper van rental companies in our travels, yet Cabana has created an experience that none of the others even come close to. Imagine all those cozy hotel luxuries paired with an awesome off-grid adventure vehicle.
Mount Rainier and Other Washington Elopement Spots
We love all of Washington state for hiking elopements – Because of views like this and for the numerous other amazing parks, forests, mountains, and stretches of rocky coast. If you’re still trying to find your perfect Washington elopement location, hit us up and we’ll help you plan your own awesome, epic day in our favorite state ever. Read all about our other favorite Washington park, Olympic National Park, here.
This stunning Washington elopement was also featured on Wandering Weddings!