Are you dreaming of a magical Washington State Elopement among the North Cascade Mountains?
I want to congratulate you because there are few places that live up to the jaw-dropping nature of these incredible mountains! Seriously, they are some of my all-time favorite places! With that being said, I know how daunting planning this type of elopement can be! So, I’ve got you covered!
As a Washington Elopement Photographer, I’m giving you a list of the best places to elope in the North Cascade Mountains in Washington. Also, I will be showing you some past elopements I’ve photographed for elopement inspiration!
You can expect a detailed and thorough run-through of the following locations in the North Cascade Mountains: Artist Point, Ptarmigan Ridge, Bagley Lakes, Mt. Shuksan, and Mazama. Together, we will touch on location specifics, permits/passes, photo examples, and so much more.
READY FOR SOME WASHINGTON MOUNTAIN GREATNESS?!
Artist Point quickly became one of my favorites. Honestly, it was for good reason. Not only does it have the most epic views, but it is EXTREMELY and EASILY accessible. For those two things, it deserves all five stars!
It is located in North Cascades National Park and only 138 miles from Seattle. This makes it easy to get to if you are traveling from outside of Washington State. The Seattle-Tacoma International Airport is a straight shot!
The closest town is Glacier, Washington which has the dreamiest Airbnbs.
It is important to note that there is only one entrance to Artist Point so it is easy to get to and find.
Mt Baker is an active volcano. So, the weather does have an impact on certain trails + roads. The best time to elope is the end of July through the end of October. You can monitor all of that info through the national park service’s website.
Artist Point is a literal dream with an easy trail path, wildflower paradises, alpine trees, wild meadows, and EPIC mountain views of Mt Baker and Mt Shuksan.
A mountain-lovers dream, wouldn’t you say?
Since Artist Point is in a national park, you’ll need to make sure you have the right permits/passes for your North Cascade Mountain Elopement.
If you want to have your ceremony in the park when you elope in the North Cascades, you’ll need to get a special use permit from the National Park Service. I would recommend applying for your permit as soon as you can. This could mean as soon as you decide on a date or when the application opens for your date. That way the day that you want for your elopement is available and you don’t run into any hiccups as you get closer to your ceremony.
Ptarmigan Ridge is definitely a fan favorite! With its stunning viewpoints and valleys, it makes for an incredible hiking elopement.
Ptarmigan Ridge kind of piggybacks on our last location! It actually is accessible from the Artist Point parking lot! The full hike is nine miles. However, the money spot is only three. If you aren’t a big hiker, but you love the views… I have two words for you: PTARMIGAN RIDGE.
For you van lifers, there is no camping in the parking lots from April 15 – November 15 to insure there is parking space for other visitors during the “busy season.”
This spot has stunning rock faces/ridgelines, colorful valleys, and extreme close-ups of Mount Baker. It links up to Chain Lakes if you wanted to add alpine lakes into the mix.
Without a doubt, fall is my favorite time of year.
The same information applies here as it does to Artist Point.
Bagley Lakes are beautiful alpine lakes surrounded by wildflower meadows and epic rock faces.
Since we are talking about the same general location, the North Cascade Mountains, the same road is used to get to most of the spots I am mentioning. Bagley Lakes is found by taking Mt. Baker higher (same as the previous two). The only difference is that it is lower up the mountain in the Heather Meadows area.
It is accessible and an easy hike. However, it is not very ADA friendly.
At Bagley Lake, there are perfect platforms for a ceremony with or without family. Not only that, there are lakes in the distance, but it is very easy to get up close to them! I always recommend considering a post-wedding dip or a relaxing paddle board trip!
GETTING PERMITS AND PASSES
The same information applies here as it does to Artist Point and Ptarmigan Ridge.
Mount Shuksan isn’t for the faint of heart. In fact, it is for ambitious mountaineers who want full-on adventure. It is a tough journey, but it is so worth it!
ABOUT THE LOCATION
This spot is pretty gnarly.
For updated and relevant information, I recommend checking out Summit Post’s entire webpage dedicated to giving those who are interested in the mountain, the best info. You can access that HERE.
Mount Shuksan is full of vast snowfields and jagged peaks on peaks on peaks. Seriously, there are a lot of peaks! Besides the peaks, there are evergreen forests with alpine trees. Undoubtedly, these make the incredible sunrises and sunsets evennnnnnn more breathtaking.
Prepare for snowcamping! I am telling you, it is gnarly and calls for mountaineers.
This information can be found within the vast information given by Summit Post.
Mazama is for those looking to get lost in the middle of the North Cascade Mountains.
To get here, you will pass Diablo and Ross Lakes on Highway Two. Once you have passed those, you will go through Washington Pass. Honestly, this is one of the most amazing views you will see in Washington! At least, that is my opinion! But, trust me! I have seen a lot of gorgeous views.
This spot is 176 miles from Seattle and has the best little market called the Mazama Store. You haven’t been to Mazama if you haven’t been to the market!
There are beautiful, dense forests that are framed by stunning rivers and alpine lakes. Of course, there are incredible mountainous views and every wildflower you could ever imagine.
Ready for a fun fact about this North Cascade Mountain location? The Pacific Crest Trail crosses right through Mazama.
Most of Mazama is BLM land. This means that no special permits are needed. However, a discover pass or interagency pass is required for parking and camping.
LOOKING FOR A PHOTOGRAPHER FOR YOUR NORTH CASCADE MOUNTAINS ELOPEMENT?
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