Hermit Park is the perfect location for couples looking to elope in Estes Park, but who aren’t quite sold on Rocky Mountain National Park (and definitely don’t want to leave their pup at home!) I might be a bit biased since it was this spot that my then-boyfriend and I celebrated our fourth anniversary together, and the same spot where we got engaged six months later. But there are SO many reasons why I love Hermit Park, but there are even more reasons why I think it should be considered for your elopement!
I was lucky enough to talk my brother, Kaleb, and his very sweet girlfriend, Shea, into doing a styled elopement shoot so I could share with you just how GROGREOUS of a spot this truly is. While they’re not married (sorry, Mom!) they sure did a great job of making it look like the real thing! Let’s dive into why Hermit Park might be your perfect elopement location!
Location, location, location!
Hermit Park is located just outside of Estes Park, Colorado and has some pretty epic views overlooking the town and Long’s Peak. You’re close to town and lots of restaurant and lodging options, but far enough out that it’s not as busy as Rocky Mountain National Park. If you’re wanting to do a private ceremony with just the two of you and still celebrate with your close friends and family, there are SO many good brewery, distillery, and restaurant options close by!
Gorgeous views for not a lot of work
Depending on how much hiking you’re looking to do, there’s lots of options! The overlook I took Kaleb and Shea is only a 20 minute, .75 mile hike from the trailhead. If you’re looking or something a bit longer, you can go all the way to the top, which ends up being around 4 miles round trip with stunning 360 degree views of Estes, the plains, and the mountains. What more could you want?!
If hiking isn’t really your thing, don’t fret. There are many gorgeous dirt roads and relatively flat trails that take you through meadows and fields of flowers to take advantage of instead. While Kaleb and Shea visited in May before the leaves started making their appearance, Hermit Park is stunning in the Fall once the many aspen groves begin changing color!
As far as permits go, Hermit Park is definitely on the lower end of the cost spectrum. A photography permit is $25 for the day, and a wedding permit is not needed if it’s just the two of you! (P.S. Did you know that Colorado allows you to self-solemnize? This means that you are not required to have an officiant or witnesses.)
Dogs are allowed!
Possibly the best selling point is the fact that dogs are allowed! My pup was our “best boy” at our wedding, so I absolutely understand wanting to include them on one of the most important days of your life. Because witnesses aren’t required on your marriage license in Colorado, you can get creative with your witnesses and even have your dog put their paw print instead!
Options for larger weddings, too!
If you love the idea of celebrating with up to 150 of your closest friends and family, they have a gorgeous pavilion, complete with a hand-crafted wedding arch, picnic tables, and a gas fire pit that can be yours for the day for $500. For weddings with guests, wedding permits can be purchased for $125.
Cabins and camping!
If you or your guests want to stay in the park overnight, there are lots of cabins and camping spots available! How cute would it be to rent a cabin for the weekend, take your time getting ready together, hike up to the very top of the mountain to exchange your vows and make it official, and then celebrate with your first dance under the stars next to a campfire in front of your cabin?
Eloping at Hermit Park is such a great option if you want to get away from the crowds of RMNP, bring your pup along, and still want the gorgeous mountain views that Estes has to offer!
While you’re here, check out Chloe & Ahren’s Anniversary Session at Hermit Park, as well as learn alll about golden hour and why you want to consider it when planning your timeline!
Ready to get started planning your Hermit Park Elopement? Let’s chat!