Proposal Planning Guide for the Rocky Mountains

how to plan a mountain proposal in Colorado

Hire a Colorado Proposal Photographer to Help

adventure elopement and mountain wedding photographer in Colorado, Nat Moore Photography, walks towards the camera

First of all, hiring a Colorado proposal photographer who has planned and documented mountain proposals in the past can be invaluable. I know you may be thinking you don’t have the funds for that but I promise this moment deserves to be documented. And you will not regret hiring someone who has done this a time or two.

I help with location scouting, planning how to surprise them, and where to drop the knee for the best vantage point of it all. I include gear lists and anything else you might need to know or think about while trying to plan an epic proposal. Including vendor recommendations to help take your proposal to the next level.

Pick Your Favorite Season

You can propose in any season in Colorado. You just have to remember that you will be in the Rocky Mountains. Which means high elevation. Thus, can mean many different kinds of weather, sometimes even changing in a matter of minutes. But each season is unique, beautiful and fun for different reasons.

a person proposes as Mill Lake in RMNP with a photographer for this adventure proposal

Winter will have fewer tourists at the most popular spots. It also means you won’t need reservations to get into our National Parks. But it also means much much colder temps. Road closures: meaning less accessible high alpine locations – unless you want to hike (or snowshoe) in. Always have a backup location plan with your photographer in winter in case of a blizzard.

Spring is pretty much winter still in Colorado’s high country. March and April are typically Colorado’s snowiest months, especially in the high country. The snow doesn’t completely melt out of the highest elevations until late June to early July, depending on the kind of winter we have. Spring is still a great time to plan a proposal at the ski resorts.

Summer is Colorado’s wildflower season which is from mid-July to early August usually. If you want to be able to hike or take a 4×4 vehicle to the top of a mountain pass without snow then this is the season for you. Summer will also provide the warmest temps (usually) in the mountains. But summers come with thunderstorms that usually happen in the afternoon to evening. So the earlier the better. A sunrise proposal will also mean that you can get to the most popular places with a lot fewer people than in the afternoon or during sunset time.

Fall is a gorgeous time of year in Colorado’s Rocky Mountains. Though you can really get any weather from snow to summer temps it is worth it because the Aspen trees are turning. You just have to be mindful of weekends and holidays with the “leaf peepers”. Colorado is one of the biggest tourist states and they flock from all over the world to be here when the Aspen leaves turn. I always suggest weekdays but especially during peak fall time. Which usually runs from mid-September to early October in the high country.

Pick a Date & Your Adventure

Pick a date when you’ll be able to do things you enjoy together. If you plan a trip full of fun things to do in multiple beautiful spots then no adventure will stand out as “omg this is it.” to your partner. It’s easy to conceal your plans when everything is an adventure! Picking the date will let you begin to make some real plans like choosing a location, booking lodging, and planning out your adventures.

Adventure Ideas for Mountain Proposals

Go skiing or snowboarding. Or try a snow bike if both of those sound too hard!

Go for a hike.

Snowmobiling or snow tubing

Exploring a mountain town.

Have a mountain picnic.

Stay in some of Colorado’s unique and luxury lodging.

Road trip to some beautiful scenery.

Take a dip in some epic hot springs.

Take a gondola ride to the top of a mountain resort.

Go dog sledding in the winter – Check out Alpine Adventure Dogsledding in Leadville.

Go kayaking or paddleboarding on an alpine lake.

4×4 to the top of a mountain.

Heli ski.

Hot air balloon.

Go climbing.

Visit one of Colorado’s many unique National Parks like The Great Sand Dunes or Black Canyon of the Gunnison.

Choose a Location for Your Proposal

Choosing a location for your mountain proposal can be based on a few things. The time of year, what you’re envisioning, your relationship or engagement story, what region of the state or environment you’re envisioning, and your physical abilities or limitations. Plus the kind of vehicle you have or the activity you want to incorporate. This is where working with a photographer who is familiar with locations and proposal logistics will come in handy. I help you find a location (if you don’t already have one in mind) and then I help you figure out the best logistics ie where to drop a knee, how to figure out how to get them to wear what they’ll be happy being photographed in without giving away the surprise ect.

Make Sure They’re Photo-Ready

Some people don’t care if they do their makeup and hair on a regular old day. Especially if they might be hiking or adventuring. But if they’re getting professional photos done that might be a different story. Once you think about it, you’ll probably know if your partner would care or not. If you think they would care then here are a few ways to encourage them to get photo-ready without telling them your plans.

  1. Set up a photo shoot for you two. Not only can you photographer help stage everything but this way they’ll know to be photo ready and wearing something cute. This is ideal for people who will care what they look like when getting proposed to and having photos taken.
  2. Tell them you want to shoot a TikTok video or reel. While you’re creating your TikTok or reel you can work in your proposal and your unsuspecting future fiance will never know.
  3. Tell them you are taking them out to a nicer restaurant after your adventure. This may prompt them to get a little more ready than they would if they were just going for a hike.
  4. Get their nails done or have press-on nails ready to put on after the proposal.

Colorado Proposal Photographer | Colorado Proposal Planning Guide
Adventure Photographer Documenting Your Moments in Colorado’s Rocky Mountains and Beyond

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