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5 Tips for Planning a Mountain Wedding

Planning a mountain wedding in Colorado and wondering where to begin? You’ve come to the right place!

There are so many beautiful and awe-inspiring wedding venues in Colorado, it’s no easy task for engaged couples to begin narrowing down the search. The first thing we recommend is to decide whether you want to get married on the Front Range (e.g. Denver, Fort Collins, Colorado Springs, etc.) or in the mountains.

Most of our couples choose a mountain wedding venue because, well, we’re in Colorado, so why not? Whether you’re a native Coloradan or simply coming to Colorado for your destination wedding, the Rocky Mountains are a sight to behold. And as far as wedding backdrops go, you couldn’t hope for much better.

With that said, there are a few things to keep in mind when planning a mountain wedding that don’t necessarily apply to urban weddings. We here at J. La Plante Photo are huge proponents of helping couples throughout the entire wedding planning process, so today we’re going to discuss five of those things…

Prepare for all four seasons when planning a mountain wedding.

Many of the best mountain wedding venues in Colorado are perched more than 8,000, 9,000 or even 10,000 feet above sea level. Weather can change rapidly at these high elevations, regardless of the time of year. Below, are two photos taken just hours apart at TenMile Station in Breckenridge. This wedding was held on June 21st (the summer solstice). It was in the 60s and sunny during the day and snowed at night.

If your wedding venue is at a high elevation, be sure to bring warm layers, even if it’s the middle of the summer.

Wedding Photo Inspiration | TenMile Station Wedding | Breckenridge Wedding Photographer | J. La Plante Photo

Wedding Photo Inspiration | TenMile Station Wedding | Breckenridge Wedding Photographer | J. La Plante Photo

Make sure you have a Plan B.

Along those same lines, if you’re having an outdoor wedding (which most couples do in Colorado), be sure there’s an indoor backup location in case a storm moves in at the last minute. Most Colorado wedding coordinators and venue owners already know about this (it’s not their first rodeo after all), but it can’t hurt to double check.

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Take steps to prevent altitude sickness.

This is especially important if you’re coming to Colorado for a destination wedding from a lower elevation. Let’s say you’re flying in from sea level, for instance. Be sure to spend a few days in Denver (5,280’ feet above sea level) to acclimate. This way, you’re not headed straight up to your wedding venue all the way from sea level in one fell swoop.

Also, be sure to drink plenty of water during the days leading up to your wedding. Alcohol will affect you more up here and a hangover at 10,000 feet is no joke.

Along those lines, eat healthy foods and get plenty of rest the night before your wedding. The last thing you want on your wedding day is a bout of altitude sickness. Always remember: once you start feeling the symptoms, it’s already too late.

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Educate friends and family when planning a mountain wedding.

If you have wedding guests flying in from out of town, there’s a lot of important info you’ll want to convey to them well before the wedding. First and foremost, warn them about altitude sickness (see above). Second, tell them to pack warm clothing (also above). Finally, give them a crash course on driving in the mountains. All-wheel-drive is recommended year-round in the mountains, so be sure your wedding guests aren’t renting Toyota Corollas at the Denver airport!

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Be sure to pad your wedding timeline.

For all of the above reasons, make sure to include plenty of buffer time in your wedding timeline, in case anything goes wrong (e.g. guests running late, a bridesmaid or groomsman getting sick, an unexpected snow shower, etc.)

Your wedding photographers will also thank you for this. Sometimes, the best wedding photos require a bit of a drive (or a hike) from the venue itself. We want to be able to take you away at some point to take photos and if you have buffers in your timeline, you’ll be able to relax and enjoy yourselves without having to worry about impending deadlines.

Don’t worry, you don’t need to know how much extra time to include in your timeline. We’re here to help you figure all of that out, based on your wedding venue and photo preferences!

Planning a mountain wedding | Black Canyon Inn Wedding | Estes Park Wedding Photographer | J. La Plante Photo

As always, feel free to reach out to us if you have any questions. Happy wedding planning!

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