How to Elope at Sprague Lake in Rocky Mountain National Park, Colorado

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We are an Elopement Photography / Videography duo based in Fort Colins, Colorado. 

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Bailee & Jake



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Rocky Mountain National Park in Colorado is one of the most jaw-dropping National Parks. It’s no wonder Cory and Lindy chose this spot for their Colorado elopement! Choosing to work with a Colorado Elopement Photographer and Videographer at Sprague Lake in Rocky Mountain National Park means gorgeous views, easy accessibility, and year round access. In this blog I want to deep dive into one of my favorite elopement locations in Rocky Mountain National Park and tell you exactly how to elope at this incredible location all while showcasing Cory and Lindy’s sunrise elopement at Sprague Lake!

Where Is Sprague Lake?

Sprague Lake is located within Rocky Mountain National Park in Colorado. This specific spot is located on the Bear Lake Corridor and is 7.5 miles from the Beaver Meadows Visitor Center. The parking lot is less than a five minute walk away from Sprague Lake. The closest towns to Sprague Lake are Estes Park, Lyons, Loveland, and Fort Collins.

The ceremony location for Sprague Lake is on this cute little dock that overlooks the lake! This location is awesome because it kinda veers off of the main path, giving you a little bit of privacy from the main path.

Sprague Lake elopement location in Rocky Mountain National Park in Colorado

Rocky Mountain National Park Timed Entry Info

Rocky Mountain National Park was the first National Park to implement a timed entry system in 2020. The park said that it did this for two reasons: To protect the parks resources and visitor experience. The timed entry process is super easy to navigate and you can learn more about the timed entry process here. You will need to create a account in order to reserve your RMNP time entry reservation. This account is free and easy to sign up for!

2024 Timed Entry Updates

  • Rocky Mountain National Park (RMNP) will implement a pilot reservation system using timed entry in 2024, beginning on Friday, May 24
  • This summer’s pilot will be similar to the pilot used in 2023. There will be two types of reservations available: One permit will be for the Bear Lake Road Corridor, which includes the entire corridor, as well as access to the rest of the park. This reservation period will be from 5am to 6pm. The second permit will be for the “rest of the park,” and does not include access to the Bear Lake Road Corridor. This “rest of park” reservation period will be from 9am to 2pm
  • Timed entry permits will allow park visitors to enter Rocky Mountain National Park within two-hour windows of availability, with no set time for departure

Reservations to enter the park will be available through following the schedule listed below:

  • Beginning at 8 a.m. MT on Wednesday, May 1. This round of reservations will be available to enter the park from May 24 through June 30
  • The next release will occur on June 1, for the month of July and any remaining days that have not been booked for June
  • On July 1, reservations will be available for the month of August and any remaining days that have not been booked for July
  • On Aug. 1, reservations will be available for the month of September and any remaining days in August that have not been booked
  • On Sept. 1, reservations will be available for October and any remaining days in September that have not been booked

Do I Need A Timed Entry If I Have A Signed And Paid Wedding Permit?

The short answer is no. Your signed and paid wedding permit for Rocky Mountain National Park will cover your timed entry so you will not need to reserve that. However, you will still have to pay the entry fee at the entrance. You can see how much this costs here.

Your wedding permit will cover the timed entry for the amount of cars specified on your wedding permit for your specific ceremony location. For Sprague Lake, this means that you can have up to 10 cars in the winter and up to three cars in the summer. Regardless of your party size, we strongly recommend carpooling as the parking lots can fill up. You can read about the designated ceremony sites here.

If you are eloping outside of Rocky Mountain National Park but are planning on entering the park for portraits you will need to obtain a timed entry reservation.

It is important to note that there are two types of entry tickets may need; you may need a timed entry reservation and you will always need to pay the entrance fee when you arrive at the park.

How To Apply To Elope At Sprague Lake

Please read through Rocky Mountain National Parks wedding and other ceremonies page for all of the best and latest information about eloping at the park. After you have read through everything, you can fill out a wedding application here.

After you fill out the application you must email your special use application to the following address: Mailed in/faxed application forms or requests via phone are not accepted.

After favorable review of your application, a Special Use Permit will be prepared and sent to you for signature via email. Upon receipt, review, sign, and return the permit via email for final approval. If your ceremony plans change, notify the parks office immediately. After the permit is finalized, they will send you an authorized copy via email. 

The approved permit must be in your possession at the time of the ceremony! This is super important! Please make sure you print this out and have a few copies on hand. I have been stopped multiple times while out on an elopement and they ask to see your printed copy.

I have heard of couples (and vendors) getting banned from the park if they do not have a permit, so this step is vital!

If you are interested in other ceremony locations, I wrote this blog about my top three favorite locations in Rocky Mountain National Park!

The Best Time To Elope At Sprague Lake

Sprague Lake is open year round for elopements! Honestly, any time is a great time to elope here. I have photographed elopements at Sprague Lake during all of the seasons and it never gets old! Each and every season has its own beauty and you really can’t go wrong!

Why You Should Elope At Sprague Lake in Rocky Mountain National Park

Not only is Sprague Lake absolutely gorgeous, but it has some pretty incredible elopement perks! I love that this area is wheelchair accessible with an easy path all the way around the lake, it has restrooms, and the parking lot is a pretty good size! I also love that it is pretty close to the Beaver Meadows Visitor Center. Sprague Lake is also close to Moraine Park and Bear Lake, so if you wanted to include any hiking or additional portraits in Rocky Mountain National Park after elopement, this Sprague Lake is the perfect jumping off spot! To learn more about eloping in Rocky Mountain National Park, click here.

Cory and Lindy’s Sunrise Portraits

Now that we’ve covered all of the nitty gritty, let’s dive into the magic that was Lindy and Cory’s Rocky Mountain National Park elopement!

When Cory, Lindy, and I first met they knew they wanted dramatic mountain views and easy accessibility. I knew right off the bat that Sprague Lake would be the perfect place for them! After they secured their permit we began planning their dream elopement.

They knew they wanted a little more privacy so they opted for a sunrise elopement. We met them on one of the most incredible sunrises I have ever seen in the park! We started with portraits and the alpenglow was absolutely insane that morning. The pinks and oranges lit up the mountains as we watch the sunrise light up the rocky mountains. We were even able to watch the early morning fog roll out as the earth warmed up. It was such an incredible morning!

Cory and Lindy’s Elopement At Sprague Lake

After their sunset portrait session at another location in the park, we made our way to Sprague Lake for their morning ceremony. We had the most incredible morning with these two and loved every minute of their elopement!

Cory LOVES D&D so they rolled a twenty sided dice to see who got to read their vows first. It was so them and we loved that they included this in their elopement! After their incredibly sweet vows, they exchanged rings and sealed their marriage with a kiss. It was such a sweet and private ceremony on one of the most perfect days in Rocky Mountain National Park!

Ready To Plan Your Rocky Mountain National Park Elopement?

We are SO EXCITED that you’ve chosen to honor your relationship and your hearts by eloping in Colorado! Rocky Mountain National Park is in our backyard and we have so much experience romping around this gorgeous park. Get in touch with us to start planning your elopement in Rocky Mountain National Park!

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We're a husband and wife Colorado elopement photographer and videographer. We're two easy-going humans who love the outdoors and are passionate about Colorado adventure elopements. We wholeheartedly believe that saying your vows in the great outdoors is the best way to get married! Not only will we document your elopement, but we'll help you throughout the entire process to make sure that you have the most incredible wedding experience! 

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