Toggle Navigation
Toggle Navigation
Toggle Navigation
Mystical New York Elopement in the Woods

Mystical New York Elopement in the Woods

Mike and Abby decided to ditch a traditional wedding and elope in the mystical woods of Minnewaska State Park.

Photographer Dawn Honsky shares this incredible elopement with us to inspire other couples. We also have the inside scoop from the bride on all the details form this elopement day.

“They found a location that looked over the lake and Hudson Valley to say I-do. At one of their favorite hiking trails that they grew up hiking on, they now hike together with their fur babies. Abby surprised Mike with inviting his family in from out of state and it was everything. Think Outlander, with goblets for toasting, fog setting over the lake making a mystical elopement.” [Dawn]

If you want to skip the details from this elopement, then skip to the photos of this New York forest elopement. 

New York elopement at state park

Photography by Dawn Honsky Photography

Unique Details During This Elopement

One thing we love about elopements is how personal and detailed couples can get with the little details that most of the time go unnoticed during larger weddings. Since they didn’t have to worry about centerpieces and charger plates, Mike and Abby spent their time planning details that reflect their aesthetic as a couple.

Abby found her dream Jane Hill wedding dress from Still White, which was previously owned, but the dress was in perfect condition for her special day. Abby also tells us how a lot of their details were found on Etsy, including Mike’s vest and pocket watch, Abby’s crown, and their flasks! 

Details such as the champagne goblets, crown, fox fur wrap, and hatchet were all inspired to mimic the same feel of one of their favorite TV shows, Game of Thrones. We definitely get the vibe they were going for, and we are loving it!

“We knew post-ceremony it would only be fitting for us to saber a bottle of champagne on the cliffside. Why not, right? It was Mike’s brilliant idea to get a custom hatchet instead of a classic sabering knife. It suits his style much more. I found a rustic looking pack so we could easily carry the wine, goblets, and hand warmers. On the leather, I hand-painted a crest on the flap with C for Crane.” [Abby]

Having an elopement like this New York elopement means you can focus on details like these and actually appreciate them. 

“The fox fur wrap adorned a gold dragonfly pin gifted to me just before our ceremony from my matron. It’s a symbol of my mother who passed many years ago. That was maybe my favorite detail. It was unexpected and meant so much to me and brought me to tears.” [Abby]

bridal party at Minnewaska State Park.

Deciding to Plan an Elopement Instead of a Big Wedding

Mike and Abby both work in the hospitality industry. Thus, they are always working alongside couples planning their wedding. They decided they wanted to step back from the standard expectations presented by wedding industries and do something that defined who they were.

“While a large gathering can be absolutely worth it, we really just wanted to focus on each other since the majority of our careers and time are devoted to clients and their guests. It was the most perfect day for us!” [Abby]

These two actually had a venue in mind before deciding to elope, but they eventually realized their initial location didn’t fit their unconventional vision. 

“We needed something more wild. Minnewaska State Park has been my go-to for hikes since childhood. It’s stunning! Any time of the year. Considering Dawn’s talents, we knew it would be incredible.” [Abby]

detail portraits of bride and groom in January.

Planning a New York Elopement

According to the couple, planning was easy! They kept things simple and romantic for this Minnewaska State Park elopement and focused more on the smaller details.

We love how Abby surprised Mike by inviting his family, who drove down from Vermont.

“He’s so close to them, especially his mom and sisters. I had my father present too. Overall we got everything together in less than 6 months. We asked our great friends and neighbors to be our wedding party; My lifelong friend as Matron of Honour and her husband officiated, beautifully.” [Abby]

This elopement shows other couples how you can most certainly include your closest friends and family on your special day. There are no set rules when it comes to adventurous elopements, and that is why our team and photographers love them so much.

One concern Abby and Mike had was the weather while planning their New York elopement. Abby tells us how Dawn put her at ease during the planning process and ensured that it would look amazing, no matter what mother nature decides on. She was completely right.

We love the fog and wet nature around them. Dawn also did a wonderful job of capturing Abby’s dirty wedding dress from their adventures. We really think it tied perfectly with the look and feel these two were trying to achieve.

NY elopement adventure

Favorite Moments During Their Wedding Day

Abby tells us her favorite part was planning and sharing ideas with Mike. A lot of couples tend to get lost in the logistics and details when planning their special day, and these two remind others how important it is to enjoy the planning process together.

“Every moment still gives me chills. We’re absolutely in love with the entirety of our elopement. It was us: wild, a little messy, but so warmly intimate. Running around the park with Dawn was such an amazing experience. She’s inspiring. We usually don’t enjoy cameras or photos, but felt so comfortable we’d do it all over again given the chance!” [Abby]

Aside from the whole experience in general, Abby and Mike also loved including their dogs on their special day and their first dance as husband and wife.

“After a fantastic dinner at Silvia, we got to our room, had a record playing, lights were down, totally exhausted but beyond happy and we just danced slowly and briefly to the music. Marrying my best friend and celebrating the way we did, hiring Dawn to capture it all, were by far the best decisions, and we’re so grateful for all of the love and support around us.” [Abby]

Photos of This New York Forest Elopement

If you are loving this New York elopement in Minnewaska State Park, then you should definitely check out some of our elopement packages for more location inspiration.

Thank you to Dawn for sharing this session, and congratulations to Mike and Abby!

Looking for the perfect vendors for your wedding?
Search our Wandering Weddings members HERE!