Brainard Lake Elopement

colorado elopement

Brainard Lake Wedding

How to elope in Colorado

Brainard Lake Recreation Area Elopement Guide

How to plan a beautiful and unforgettable

Brainard Lake Elopement or Wedding

Colorado Wedding Videographer and Photographer

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I'm Going To Look After You.

From Your First Contact, All The Way Through This Process

The goal isn’t to portray you in a way that misrepresents you. Rather - take the time to understand what it is your looking for, what you want your wedding day to be like, hear & understand your journey, and provide you with an experience that is for only for you.

Brainard Lake Colorado

Overview For Your

Brainard Lake Elopement

Brainard Lake in Colorado is one of the prettiest elopement locations you can choose. With endless views that are easily accessible, and even more within a short hike, it's the perfect middle ground. However, this is a very trafficked area that you'll need to do a little prep for to visit or get married at. While it's nothing to difficult, it's all necessary to ensure that you have the best experience, and protect this beautiful area to the best of your ability!

Brainard Lake Elopement

The Timed Entry System

Due to the high traffic to the area and limited parking, Brainard Lake has a timed entry system. To get a ticket, you will need to reserve them via and select the trailhead within the area you'd like to park at. Your pass will only be valid for the trailhead you select and passes are released on a 14-day rolling window.

brainard lake elopement

When Is Brainard Lake Open?

While open year-round, there is a gate that closes for the winter roughly 2 miles from the main area of Brainard Lake. To reach the lake & other trailheads in the winter months, you will need to snowshoe or cross country ski the distance over the snowy road. Generally, the gate is open for the season & drivable from Late June to Late October, weather permitting.

Colorado Elopement

Should We Have A Guest Limit?

In short, yes. For intimate weddings at Brainard Lake I would highly recommend having no more than 20 guests present. Here's why - It's not that big of an area. Parking can be difficult, cell service is non-existent and coordination to get everyone to the same location can be quite difficult. This area is best suited for gatherings that you can fit everyone in one or two vehicles.

Brainard Lake Elopement Videographers

Will We Need Any Permits?

In most cases you won't. While you do need to pay for your ticket in ($14 per vehicle) there currently isn't a required permit for eloping couples under *most* circumstances. Just to be safe, I check in with the National Forest Service regarding each circumstance just to be sure we're all in the clear. Events that need permits are usually ones that have guests present as they are higher traffic.

Brainard Lake Wedding

What's the best season to have your Brainard Lake wedding or elopement? This is a key questions to ask, as there are certain parts of the year that are more accessible than others. In all honesty, there are certain times of the year that you won't even be able to reach many of the locations in this post unless you're a Colorado winter pro and ready to face the elements.

How To Elope In Colorado

Summer Elopements at Brainard Lake

Summer elopements at Brainard Lake are incredibly beautiful. It's also by far the most popular time at Brainard Lake. Early summer gives you incredible snow capped views of the Indian Peaks in the near distance, as late summer will have an abundance of colors. If you're eloping at Lake Isabelle or Mitchell Lake, the mid-summer months will give you the best results, as the ice on the lakes will have melted, and most of the snow drifts will be gone. Regardless. Brainard Lake is at its peak in the summer, no doubt about it. Just be aware that during this season, weekends will be very crowded and give you very little privacy, while weekdays can give you a little more privacy.

Fall Elopements at Brainard Lake

Fall is also an excellent time to elope at Brainard Lake. From Mid-September to Late-October you'll find an abundance of fall foliage, and some occasional light snowfall. This is by far my favorite season for elopements at the Brainard Lake area simply due to the beauty & diversity of the colors. The area is still fully accessible, but with fewer tourists it will oftentimes give you areas all to yourselves. Lake Isabelle is one of the most popular elopement locations in the area (and Colorado) but a little known fact is that it's actually a reservoir. It's generally drained in mid-September without notice, so plan accordingly if that's your desired location!

Snowshoe Elopement At Brainard Lake Colorado

Winter & Spring Elopements at Brainard Lake

The main road leading to Brainard Lake is closed from Late October to Late June, depending on conditions. During this time frame, you can still access the trailheads within the Brainard Lake area, but you will need to park at the Winter Lot and make your way from there. It's roughly 2.25 miles from the Winter Lot to the base of Brainard Lake. While there are plenty of beautiful locations along the way, you'll be greatly rewarded if you make the trek to Long Lake or the areas beyond. The area is incredibly beautiful in the winter, as you'll find an abundance of snow and white peaks in the near distance.

Brainard Lake Hiking Trails

The Best Elopement and Wedding Locations At Brainard Lake

Let's talk about the best elopement and wedding locations at Brainard Lake! Brainard Lake has some of the most beautiful & accessible high-elevation terrain in all of Colorado. It's split up into three main areas accessible via trailheads: Brainard Lake, Long Lake Trailhead & Mitchell Lake Trailhead. Each of these offer vastly different terrain & options, some of which you can drive up to, while other areas might require a hike as little as 1/4 mile or up to 10 miles.

Brainard Lake Sunrise Elopement

Brainard Lake Area (Main Area)

Long Lake & Lake Isabelle

Eloping at Lake Isabelle has become a Colorado Adventure Elopement staple. The four mile round-trip hike will reward you with one of the prettiest alpine lake backdrops, especially at sunrise. Long Lake (1/2 mile round trip) is also another great backdrop without the longer hike, and also has some incredible trees.

This area of the park has the most parking and easily accessible locations. In most cases, you can expect walks of 300-500 feet to some great locations. By default, this area is generally the most crowded, but for very good reason. Between the great views & easily accessible water & mountains, it's hard to beat.

Here's Some Of My Favorite Locations In This Area of Brainard Lake:

Here's Some Of My Favorite Locations In This Area of Brainard Lake:

Lefthand Res & Niwot Mountain

Mitchell Lake & Blue Lake

While technically not part of the recreation area, the road to these locations is right next to the entrance gate of Brainard Lake. These two areas offer fewer crowds, and some incredible views. Niwot Mountain is one of the most accessible mountain top view in the area and the views are simply incredible.

Blue Lake is one of the more strenuous hikes in the area. It's roughly 6 miles round-trip, with over 1K feet of elevation gain. Mitchell Lake is much more manageable, as it's just under 2 round-trip and very little elevation gain. The trees on the way up are also incredibly beautiful and photo worthy.

Here's Some Of My Favorite Locations In This Area of Brainard Lake:

Here's Some Of My Favorite Locations In This Area of Brainard Lake:

Brainard Lake Colorado Wedding

Eloping is so much more than just saying your vows or hiking to an epic location. At the end of the day, you'll want to celebrate in a way that's authentic to you. Regardless of what that is, I'm here to help make your vision come to life!




Go On A Hike

(Short Or Long!)

Make It An

Overnight Trip

Let's Take Things

To The City

With the vibrant mountain town life just down the road in Nederland, you can experience the local food & drink scene there, or take things back to Boulder or Denver for a real city experience.

For those looking to have the photos with the best lighting at some incredible locations, camping is a great option. You can easily get a camping permit and take advantage of those early morning views.

With an extensive network of trails on-site, it's hard not to take advantage of the beauty. Getting there a bit early for sunrise or sticking around for sunset will give you some incredible visuals that you'll never forget!

Lake Isabelle Elopement Packages

Lake Isabelle Elopements

Let's talk a bit more about Lake Isabelle Elopements! Lake Isabelle is easily one of the most popular elopement locations in all of Colorado. It's within an easy drive of Denver, Boulder, and Fort Collins. In addition, it's absolutely beautiful! Since it is such a popular elopement location, I've included a few details below to show you more of the details into eloping at Lake Isabelle. Let's dig in a bit deeper!

Lake Isabelle Fast Facts

Hiking To Lake Isabelle

The hike to Lake Isabelle is one of the prettiest in the state. It's honesty no surprise this is such a popular location. To get to Lake Isabelle, you will need to park at the Long Lake Trailhead. Just note, to park at this location, you will need a specific timed entry pass to this location. If you get one to anywhere but this location, your hike will grow in length by 2 miles total.

• It's roughly a 4-mile round trip hike with 600ft of elevation gain.

• Hiking shoes are highly recommended as the path is rocky

• This is a high elevation hike, take proper precautions (water, food, etc.)

• You will be hiking for roughly for 2-3 hours (in and out)

Why Elope At Lake Isabelle?

The base of this hike sits at roughly 10,500 feet and ends at roughly 11,000 feet. Just note, with an elevation of nearly two miles high, you will need to take proper precautions to complete this hike, especially if you do not live at elevation. Hydrating 24-hours before, in addition to bringing along plenty of water and calorie dense foods is key. Even then you might be prone to elevation sickness, so try to give yourself a day or two to acclimate if coming from low elevations.

Beautiful Mountain Views At Sunrise and Sunset

It's Easily Accessible In Summer / Early Fall

While at a high elevation, it's a easier & more simple hike

It's easily accessible from the Denver Metro area

Colorado Elopement

The process


To start - fill out the form via the 'contact' page and I'll be in touch within 24-hours to introduce myself & set up a time for us to hop on a laid-back call where we can get to know one another.

Connect + Introductions


I want to understand what it is your looking for, what you want your wedding day to be like, hear & understand your journey. After, I'll create a customized package for you that reflects just that.

Personalized Proposal


Once you feel confident that I'm your person, to lock in your date, I ask for a signed contract agreement in addition to a 30% retainer to lock in your date. After that, it's all official!

Your Date & Retainer


After securing your date, we can dive deeper into planning every aspect of your day. This is super easy & laid back, starting with a questionnaire to find what your non-negotiables & must haves are.

Planning Your Experience


On your wedding day, you'll be able to fully live in the moment and I'll be there to capture it all. After, I'll take the time to edit your film & photos into a piece of art that's all about you.

Wedding Day + Editing

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