Planning an elopement in Glacier National Park? Bet there are a million questions swirling around in your brain – photographers, accommodations, permits, travel – ALL OF THE THINGS! Don’t you worry, I’ll answer all of those questions for ya, but today, let’s talk about choosing your date!
Choosing a date is maybe not that exciting but a really important step in any wedding timeline, especially when it comes to planning an elopement in Glacier, the date can really affect your whole vision for the day! If you are looking for something specific, whether it’s the grand scenic mountain views or snowy fields, it’s important to choose a date that is right for you! Up here in the Rockies, weather can be unpredictable, a little wild, and maybe different than you’d expect! No worries though, I’m here to help you plan your adventure no matter the season!
First, ask yourself some questions..
One: Do we have any flexibility in our date? – If you have a specific date in mind, you’ll have to accept whatever weather comes with the season, which can be magical, it’s not a bad thing. If your date is in busy months, bookings might become scarce for vendors near the park so you’re gonna wanna get rolling ASAP.
Two: What views do we want for our day? – Bright, sunny mountain views? Whimsical snowy peaks? Waterfalls? In love with wildflowers? If you have specific ideas for where you want to elope within the park, make sure to choose a date that spot is accessible, and your views are “in season”.
Three: Do we have specific times of day in mind? – Sunrise and sunset sessions are popular choices, but daylight varies throughout the year and temps can drop pretty low – so keep that in mind! Also the continental divide runs through the park some areas are better for sunrise light and others are best at sunset!
Now that I’ve got ya thinking about your date + asking yourselves a few questions, let me show you what different seasons in Glacier National Park have to offer!
Sweet summertime! Late June through August.
Summer is a favorite for a reason! Glacier National Park’s sweeping valley fields are blooming with wild flowers, days are long with that golden hour light and the whole park is yours for the choosing! The sun rises early around 6a and can set as late as 9:30! The famous Going-to-the-Sun Road opens typically the third week of June and the whole park is open and accessible for us to explore! Prior to the 3rd week of June there are accessible areas on both the west and east side of the park however much of the Going-to-the-Sun Road is closed over Logan’s Pass. Keep in mind, with this summertime beauty also comes crowds. Elopements are typically booked for Monday through Thursday to avoid the masses! Plus I know the spots that are quiet and kind of secretive! Just look at the park in the summer – pretty freakin magical!
Fall! September to early October.
Who doesn’t love fall?! I mean really? Turning leaves giving those golden hues, the crisp air and smaller crowds! And while fall in Glacier can be what dreams are made of, it’s often short lived. Winter comes quickly around here. Be ready for chilly temperatures starting in mid-September and snowfall as early as October! Sometimes there is even a rogue winter storm end of September!
Late fall can bring unpredictable weather and it varies every year. But, if you time it juussst right, you could end up there just as the snow starts to fly and it’s incredible!
Winter! October through April.
Winter is a dreamy time here in Glacier National Park! If you are looking for fields of fresh snow and dramatic mountain views – winter might be right for you! Days are short and temperatures are frigid, but if your dream is a winter wonderland, you won’t be disappointed!
And while winter is a magical time, you should be warned that it can also look like a white-out, with mountains totally socked in! It is winter, ya know?? Most of the park is closed in the off-season, making some viewpoints impossible to reach. The Going-to-the-Sun Road is closed from mid-October to late June. Expect in winter months to have access from the West Entrance up to the Going-to-the-Sun Road to Lake McDonald lodge only. But there are still beautiful views to be found in these places!
Spring. May to mid June!
Oh springtime, our unpredictable friend!! Snow or rain or snow or sunshine?? We never know! Okay we don’t usually have snow, but it has happened. Spring blooms late in Glacier with winter lasting til May. So while we warmly welcome spring time when she comes, the wait can be a long one. But when winter finally subsides, it leaves behind a little magic! Areas like Many Glacier + Two Medicine Valleys start to open up mid to late may. Even though you still can’t get to Logan’s Pass, you can enter the Going-to-the-Sun Road from St Marys giving us a little more space to roam. It is also very quiet this time of year in the park. Accommodations inside the park don’t open up until June and visitors haven’t started flooding in yet, so book the cutest AirBnb nearby and enjoy having this incredible place to yourself!
So are you for wildflower fields in the summer or winter snow and mountain views? Maybe somewhere in between? No matter what date you choose, I’m ready when you are so let’s start planning!!