Oregon is the ideal place for any adventurous couple looking for an incredibly scenic elopement experience in the western United States. This Pacific Northwest state has it all, from landscapes like rugged cliffs and sea stacks, an abundance of waterfalls, and epic mountain views. This guide will walk you through the fun and practical logistics you need to plan your Oregon elopement and how to elope in Oregon.
I’m just going to ramble/list a bunch of the cool stuff Oregon has to offer: the deepest lake in America, the longest land route AKA the Oregon Trail, the second most climbed mountain (Mt. Hood, which is a close second to Mt Fuji), the deepest river gorge in North America, the largest amount of microbreweries, the nations most photographed lighthouse, over 750 vineyards, a National Monument with the richest fossil sites on the planet, the most ghost towns, and so much more. I can guarantee you that Oregon has something that hits all the checkmarks on your adventure elopement list.
It gets pretty rainy and moody in Oregon (obviously since it’s the Pacific Northwest everything there looks like it’s straight from Twilight), but there are peak times when perfect weather comes around if you’d like to avoid the rain as much as possible.
Best time to Travel: June – September (Ideally July)
July has an average high of 80 degrees with average lows of about 57 and just 0.6 inches of rain which is way lower than the rest of the year. The summer months may bring about more tourism, so to have the most private experience, we recommend eloping on a weekday, even at sunrise, if you’re up for it.
To apply for your marriage license, you must apply in person no more than 60 days before your elopement. This is designated by the county you are eloping in.
You will receive your license the day you apply for it, there is no waiting period. You’re required to have an officiant and two witnesses. The application is $60. Syd and I will take care of the rest (two witnesses and an officiant, that’s us! No way!).
Oregon is home to at least 238 unique waterfalls. Here’s the link to a complete list that includes; height, hike times, traffic, and all that fun stuff if you want to get nerdy: Wiki Oregon Waterfall nerd stuff.
Many of the waterfalls in Oregon include an incredible hike, some short and easy; others are a longer trek better suited for the experienced adventurer. If you want to get that epic scene of you and your significant other professing your love to each other underneath one of these beauties, I promise we could find one that perfectly fits your vision.
This isn’t so much a specific place as it is a combination of two landscapes that make up an awesome view. Alvord is, believe it or not, a desert located in Southeastern Oregon. Steen’s is the mountain range that sets the backdrop for this magical place. The Alvord Desert was once a lake that spanned 100 miles across and 200 feet deep. Today the primary portion of the flat alkaline desert is about 20 miles long and 7 miles wide. Did I mention there are also glacier canyons and hot springs throughout this place? Pretty amazing.
Canon Beach is a popular coastal tourist destination is located about 1.5 hours west of Portland and toward the Northern coast of Oregon. It is most famous for “Haystack Rock”, a 235-foot sea stack that juts out of the Pacific Ocean just off the coast making for a super dramatic backdrop to your epic elopement scene. National Geographic listed Canon Beach as “Top 100 most beautiful places.”
If you’re wanting a more private experience and aren’t down for sunrise, we have some other favorite coastal Oregon locations that are much lower traffic. Contact us today to get started planning your Oregon elopement.
A maybe possibly active volcano surrounded by lakes creates the picture-perfect snowcapped mountain landscape. Mount Hood is also the 2nd most climbed mountain in the world. With about 11,200 feet to the summit, there’s plenty of mountains and surrounding area to discover.
We of course had to include a National Park in here! Home to the ninth deepest lake on the planet, Crater Lake is surrounded by rocky cliff faces and unbelievably blue water. But there is a lot more to this park than just its beautiful lake. In fact, the lake only makes up about 10% of the park. The entire park is made up of over 180,000 acres of dense lush forest. This is definitely a park to knock off your bucket list.
My name is Sydney, and I'm a destination wedding and elopement photographer based out of Austin, Texas. I love to capture timeless, creative, and emotional photographs for couples who are craving an intimate, modern, and intentional wedding experience. Beyond photographing, I love to assist eloping couples in their travel and planning to make their day relaxing and enjoyable.