A Two Day Oregon Coast & California Redwoods Adventure Elopement
The couple chose this area of the coast because of the proximity of the Redwoods in California and the potential for hiking in both areas. They wanted to make sure they had both types of experiences on their elopement day. This two-day Oregon Coast & California Redwoods elopement features Samuel H Boardman, Jedediah Smith Redwoods, & Secret Beach!
About This Elopement Adventure Near the Oregon Coast
“These two have been together a long time and decided to elope while doing what they love – hiking, traveling, and having adventures. We started early and met up at Secret Beach pre-dawn. We hiked down and had the place to ourselves. It was slightly foggy and magical. We played on the beach and explored the rocks. Afterward, we hit up a different spot in the area and enjoyed the coastal views, complete with a natural arch. These two did their first dance here as the sun burned off the rest of the morning fog. After a midday break/rest, we met back up at their amazing oceanside Airbnb. They cut their cake, which is her favorite. We then hiked on a different trail as the sun was setting and took in the beauty of the coast.
At golden hour we ended back at Secret Beach where they exchanged vows. After some tears and laughs, they were married. They poured some wine, watched the rest of the sunset, and then read letters/notes from loved ones. As dusk set in, we busted out the lanterns and had some fun until dark. It was an amazing sunrise-sunset type of elopement with a ‘just us’ adventure/hike vibe. The next day we continued the fun. They got their wedding clothes back on and we explored the Redwoods together, seeing the trees from above and on the ground.” [Emily, the photographer]
Permit and LNT information When Eloping in an Oregon State Park
Thinking about planning a similar elopement adventure? Emily shares some permit and LNT information, along with her top tips for eloping here.
- A permit to elope in an Oregon State Park is typically not needed, given the group does not exceed 50 people. Contact the park you’re interested in directly to double-check.
- Your photographer and you should be looking at the tide table and sunrise/sunset while planning what your day may look like. This will help keep you prepared and safe! You wouldn’t want to get caught up having fun and then be stranded because the tide came in quickly.
- If you’re considering making a fire, read up on current fire regulations in your desired area. Make phone calls if the information isn’t obvious.
Top Tips for Eloping in the Oregon Coast & California Redwoods
- This area of the coast is only 12 miles, but it’s jam-packed with gorgeous forests and coastal views. It’s becoming increasingly popular and can get crowded, especially on weekends and afternoons.
- Secret Beach is probably smaller than you’re thinking if you’ve never been. For these reasons, my couple and I decided to visit Secret Beach at sunrise. The hike down is fairly short and somewhat steep. Expect to get your feet wet/sandy. Be okay with bare feet or bring a second pair of “beach/water shoes”.
- This southern portion of the Oregon Coast is far from any major airports (like Portland or Sacramento). There are airports in Medford or Eugene that will get you closer but do expect a fair amount of driving to get to this area of the coast.
From the photographer:
“We split the day up as a sunrise/sunset type of elopement. C+A wanted to say their vows at sunset. When we met back up and hiked down to the water, the sun was getting so golden orange and glowy. They read their personal vows to each other, barefoot on the beach, with the sound of the waves crashing. It was romantic, emotional, lowkey, and true-to-them. I shed some tears while I documented.
After sunrise, we hiked some more and passed by a forest where sunrays were coming through the trees just right. We were flabbergasted by the beauty of it and we of course stopped for photos. Leaving room for a little spontaneity for what surprises the day holds is one of my favorite things about elopements. It was such a nice bonus set of images for them!”
Details From This Elopement
“Because we got up for sunrise, we were rewarded with the whole beach to ourselves. It was foggy, still, and secluded. We ran around and were awed by the rock formations. I absolutely loved that C+A took the time to sit down on the beach at sunset to read letters from their loved ones over a glass of wine. It was emotional, joyful, and special. It honored those close loved ones who couldn’t be there; a great way to include family if you want a ‘just us’ elopement experience.
At dusk, we busted out lanterns and had some fun. The colors were stunning as blue hour descended upon us. Lantern shots will never go out of style because each couple’s day and location is different. I love how it adds a unique touch to each gallery.”
Final Words of Advice From The Photographer
“If you’re eloping in a popular/trendy location, prepping your couple ahead of time about how to make it the most intimate experience possible is helpful. There needs to be a conversation about the date choice, season, time of day, etc. in advance to plan for the best possible outcome. Sometimes you will see other couples eloping at the same place as you. If you’re absolutely not okay with it, that is totally okay! Just coordinate with your photographer before booking or very early in planning to find an alternate location that will provide the likelihood of more privacy.
As I always say, prepare for the worst and hope for the best! Preparation is HUGE. If you’re looking for photographers, make sure their website is talking about it. They aren’t there to prepare for you, but they will assist/support you. Some more than others.” [Emily, the photographer]
Photos From This Elopement Adventure