How do you elope in Crested Butte Co? Here is your go-to guide from locations to permits. I will walk you through how to elope like a pro in the beautiful town of Crested Butte Colorado!
Choose Your Season
Crested Butte’s beauty varies throughout the year. Decide whether you want a winter wonderland, a vibrant summer ceremony, or the golden hues of fall. Each season offers unique opportunities and scenery.
- Fall in Crested Butte (September – October) Beautiful yellow and orange aspens with the backdrop of the mountains are gorgeous. But you are at very high elevation, and it could snow and will be cold at night. The leaves are at peak in mid-September and could be off the trees but October.
- Winter in Crested Butte (November – April) Winter in Crested Butte is amazing—but remember, it’s a ski town that’s above 9,000 feet. Even on a bluebird day that’s sunny and clear, you’re going to be dealing with cold and snow. If you love your winter sports and relish an elopement day playing in the snow or skiing, then this is the place for you! But if you prefer beautiful views of snow in the background with warmer weather where you’re eloping, Crested Butte in the summer or fall is probably a better choice.
- Spring in Crested Butte (May-June) Spring in Crested Butte does not exist because it is mud-season. Usually by mid-June the snows stop falling but depending on the snow year we have had, it could be muddy until the end of June and some of the remote locations will not be accessible.
- Summer in Crested Butte (July-August) We are the wildflower capital so summer in Crested Butte is absolutely stunning. You’ll experience hot days with sunshine that last well into the evening, but it still cools down quite a bit in the evening so bring a light layer if your event will continue into the night.
Permit Requirements for Eloping
Check if your chosen elopement location requires permits. Popular outdoor spots may have regulations to ensure a minimal environmental impact. Obtain the necessary permits well in advance. Some cool things about getting married in Colorado-
- Marriage licenses must be used within 35 days of the issue date in Colorado
- You don’t have to get your marriage license in Crested Butte—Colorado is cool with you getting your license in any county so long as it’s in Colorado
- No witnesses are necessary—no officiants, either! So you can marry yourselves in the state of Colorado.
- Licenses cost $30—but some counties might only accept cash, so prepare for that
- There’s no waiting period—AKA, if you want to get your license, get married, and turn it back in all in the same 24 hours, you can!
- You must file the license (in person or by mail) in the county it was issued
Elope in Crested Butte with Local Vendors
- If you work with local vendors who specialize in elopements in Crested Butte you are sure to have a easier experience with your planning. This includes photographers, officiants, florists, and any other professionals you may need. They’ll have insights into the area and help make your day seamless.
Weather Considerations for Your Elopement
- Mountain weather can be unpredictable. It is usually cooler in the evenings no mater the season, and very cold in the winter depending on the time of day. Always bring layers!
Altitude Awareness in Crested Butte
- Crested Butte is at 8,883ft. in town and will go up to 12,000+ in the mountains. Allow time for acclimatization, stay hydrated, and be mindful of the potential effects of altitude on you and your guests.
Capture the Scenery of Crested Butte
- Work closely with your photographer to capture the stunning mountain landscapes when you elope in Crested Butte. I often end up helping clients with location and time-of-day plans because I have an insight on the lighting in all of the spots in Crested Butte and surrounding areas, so don’t be afraid to ask!
- Choose cozy and romantic accommodations for your elopement stay. Crested Butte offers charming cabins, lodges, and bed-and-breakfasts that can add to the intimate atmosphere.
- Celebrate your elopement with a romantic dinner at one of Crested Butte’s local restaurants. Enjoy the flavors of the region and make it a memorable culinary experience.
Personalize Your Elopement Ceremony
- Whether it’s writing your vows or incorporating personal touches, make your elopement uniquely yours. Consider involving local traditions or symbolic elements that resonate with you as a couple.
Informing Your Guests
- If you have guests attending, provide them with information about the location, weather, and any special considerations. This ensures everyone is well-prepared for the elopement.
- Obtaining the necessary paperwork and marriage license in Gunnison County is easy. Just visit the courthouse in Gunnison and get it all sorted before you ceremony.
Select the Perfect Location for Your Elopement in Crested Butte
Crested Butte offers diverse locations, from mountain summits to wildflower-filled meadows. See a list below of my personal favorites!
- Emerald Lake: A stunning alpine lake surrounded by lush greenery in the summer and snow-covered landscapes in the winter, providing a tranquil and picturesque setting.
- Woods Walk is one of the ceremony sites owned by Crested Butte Land Trust, that you can reserve for both elopements and larger weddings. It’s walking distance to downtown, which makes it very easy to combine an outdoor ceremony here with a reception at one of the many restaurants on Elk Ave.
- Peanut Lake is another of the ceremony sites that can be rented via the Crested Butte Land Trust. It’s close enough to downtown to be walkable in summer, and features views of Mt. Crested Butte and an aspen grove of beauty.
- Gunsight Bridge is the final of the three ceremony sites from Crested Butte Land Trust. It’s best for ceremonies from July through the fall offering a picturesque bridge and river surrounded by mountains.
- Mountain passes and the surrounding wilderness offer some amazing scenery as long as you’re up for some semi-sketchy 4×4 driving. There’s some epic dispersed camping in this area, so you could even camp under the stars on your wedding night! These passes are usually accessible from early July, when the snow has melted, until early October, until the snow flies.
- Irwin Lake is a serene mountain lake with reflections of the surrounding peaks. It is also one of the busiest locations in the summer so keep that in mind if privacy is your top priority.
- Aspen groves are amazing locations to elope in. If you find one in the National Forest you can get married for free!
- Paradise Divide is a high mountain pass offering panoramic views of snow-capped peaks and vibrant wildflowers during the summer months, creating a breathtaking backdrop when you elope in Crested Butte.
- Crested Butte Mountain is where you can enjoy sweeping views of the valley below and distant mountain ranges. But you will need to book with CBMR to use this location.
Things to do in Crested Butte
- Skiing and Snowboarding: In winter, enjoy world-class skiing and snowboarding at Crested Butte Mountain Resort.
- Mountain Biking: In summer, explore the extensive mountain biking trails, and consider taking the lift for downhill biking.
- Hiking: Crested Butte offers scenic hiking trails for all levels of hikers. Don’t miss the wildflower-filled meadows during the summer.
Crested Butte Mountain Resort
Experience the resort’s amenities, including zip-lining, scenic chairlift rides, and the Adventure Park with a climbing wall and bungee trampolines.
Historic Downtown Crested Butte
- Stroll through the charming streets of downtown Crested Butte, lined with colorful Victorian buildings. Explore local shops, art galleries, and cafes.
Outdoor Events and Festivals
- Check the calendar for events like the Crested Butte Film Festival, Wildflower Festival, and the Crested Butte Arts Festival.
Crested Butte Nordic Center
- Enjoy cross-country skiing and snowshoeing in the winter or explore the trails on foot or bike during the warmer months.
- Visit the Crested Butte Mountain Heritage Museum to learn about the town’s history and heritage.
- Attend performances or events at the Crested Butte Center for the Arts.
- Experience world-class fly fishing in the rivers and streams surrounding Crested Butte.
- Drive the West Elk Loop Scenic and Historic Byway for breathtaking views of mountains, valleys, and wildlife.
Relaxation and Wellness
- Unwind with a spa day or yoga session to rejuvenate in the tranquil mountain setting.
- Attend outdoor concerts in the summer months, often held in beautiful settings.
Photography and Stargazing
- Capture the stunning landscapes with your camera or enjoy stargazing away from city lights.
- Savor local cuisine in the town’s restaurants, ranging from fine dining to cozy cafes.
- Explore the mountain trails by renting off-road vehicles or joining guided tours.
- Enjoy camping in the surrounding wilderness for a true outdoor experience.