How To Elope In Palo Duro Canyon And Make It Absolutely Unforgettable!

How to Elope in Palo Duro Canyon!

Let’s say a big wedding is just not your thing, there’s some people who this just does not not resonate with. Usually, elopements are most appreciated by those who charter their own path, love intimate dinners and they tend to love slow, intentional moments with the people they care about the most. The term elopement often creates an image of a couple running off to a chapel in Vegas with an officiant dressed like Elvis. I’m proud to say we’ve moved far from this stereotype. Your elopement wedding day can be just the two of you or you can invite family members. Unlike a traditional wedding it’s usually 10-15 people in attendance. I’m often asked to share the details around how to elope, so here’s how to elope in Palo Duro Canyon State Park.

Palo Duro Elopement at Palo Duro State Park, Texas Elopements

Eloping in Palo Duro Canyon State Park

Palo Duro Canyon State Park is a beautiful place to elope! It’s the second largest canyon in the United States right after the Grand Canyon. At Palo Duro, the canyon is roughly 120 miles long. There are tons of trails to hike and play which vary in difficulty. There are so many amazing places to hike and explore, and the views are absolutely incredible. You really feel like you’re in a different state when you’re there enjoying nature and wilderness!

What is the best time of year to elope in Palo Duro Canyon?

Usually the best time to enjoy most of the activities on the Palo Duro Canyons is the summer (ideally March-April) and fall (ideally September-December.)

Palo Duro Canyon State Park in Canyon Texas

Where’s the best place to stay in Palo Duro Canyon State Park.

There are so many options for staying in the area. I prefer to tent camp depending on the time of year and you can book directly from the State Park website here. I have stayed in Sagebrush, Hackberry and Fortress Cliff which were all awesome! Here are a few other options for your stay while visiting Palo Duro Canyon State Park:

  • Traditional camping is an option,
  • Palo Duro Canyon offers glamping options! options. if you’re wanting the most comfortable camping type of experience in the wilderness.
  • Doves Rest Cabins is easily one of my favorite rentable options for having beautiful views in every direction is
  • On Airbnb you can find Tiny Home rentals. I loved my stay there, you’re right at the front steps to the state park and along the rim. It’s in the same vicinity of the Palo Duro Zip Lining company and the Jeep tour There have been instances in which couples have rented all the tiny homes on this property for their intimate wedding guests. I LOVE this idea for intimate weddings. There are benches, fire pits, grills. It really has everythng I needed when staying here.

You can always contact me for more information and options. I love sharing all the yummy details about Palo Duro Canyon!

Texas Elopement in Canyon, Texas. Photo taken by elopement photographer Karole Johnson Photography

Create a personalized elopement planning checklist

You eloped with your partner. Nobody knows what makes them happier or the most joyful. Tell me your expectation! Your events will not appear like those of others – there is no good way to plan such personal events. These general wedding planning tips are designed to meet your specific needs. Having photographed hundreds of couples, we have got general ideas for how to plan their wedding day for a smoother and more stress-free event.

Determine a Budget

Budgeting may be one of the more difficult things about marriage, however, it definitely is one of the biggest things to consider. Those money conversations will be useful. I recommend you start by determining how much money you want to spend. And plan on from there. Booking your vendors early is essential. For elopements and intimate weddings, I recommend booking your Lodging, Elopement and Hair and Makeup Artist and Lastly, look at the cost of the product.

Make it official

Important Details, like becoming legally married. First things first, you will need your marriage license! Each state has their own different set of marriage laws that you must follow to become legally married. Many times this will require a trip to city hall to get your marriage license applications. If you get a marriage permit or marriage certificate from another place in your country, be sure to read the information on this document before signing it. Some documents must be provided before you travel and bring along with you.

Couple exchanging vows near the canyon at the elopement ceremony in Texas.
A couple reading their vows during their elopement ceremony at Palo Duro Canyon State Park

Next in planning for an elopement is to determine if your wedding will need and elopement planner. If you are wanting to completely hand your wedding day to someone else to plan, I would recommend a wedding/elopement planner. However, if you’re the type of person that enjoys planning small dinner parties, let’s work together and co-create the elopement day of your dreams. I’m also a licensed officiant and LOVE writing ceremony scripts for my elopement couples. Besides a marriage, it’s important to choose officiating. Are there professionals who are good at hair styling? Do you want flowers? Is there decor for the location? Dont forget to look for the receptions and parties too if they happen. Does your party have to take place at the location of your rental venue.

Palo Duro Canyon State Park Elopement/Adventure wedding/Adventure Elopement

I’m an experienced elopement photographer, and I would love to help you plan and capture your special day. I can help you with everything from getting a co-creating your timeline, obtaining a permit, to getting your marriage certificate. I’ll also ensure you follow all Leave No Trace principles.

The best place for a hiking Elopement in Texas is Palo Duro State Park.

If you’re interested in eloping in Palo Duro Canyon State Park, please reach out to me! I would be more than happy to meet your elopement photography needs and answer any of your questions and help you plan the perfect elopement day at Palo Duro State Park.

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