FAVORITE NORCAL ELOPEMENT LOCATIONS
It’s no secret that I’m a NorCal girl, through and through. I’m one of those people who just can’t get enough of their state - and I’ll tell you all about it if you dare to ask.
I was really fortunate to be born here, and I’ve spent my adult life falling more in love with this place I call home. The most amazing part about California is that you can be in literally any part of it, and within a few hours drive time - be in an entirely different and new landscape. There is nowhere else like it, I swear.
Now, I don’t know everything about SoCal (a few appearances will be made in this article!), but I’m happy to boast my love of the northern half of my beloved state, and that’s what you’re gonna get from me today. I have a ton of places throughout the Northern region of California that I love to recommend to couples to consider for their elopement…so maybe this will help you, too.
The views you think of when someone says “NorCal”
Pictured above, left to right: Mono Lake, Sierra County, Half Dome, Donner Lake, Mammoth, Lake Tahoe
Mono Lake is one of those other-wordly places. It has some really unique views and vantage points, and I love that about it.
Sierra County - now, this one is kind of vague and that’s on purpose because I think Sierra Country houses some of the most classic Sierra Nevada views and terrain. I happen to be an expert in this county, so if you book with me and want to know more about the locations available…just shout!
Yosemite National Park is timeless, and I think most people agree. While I loooooove the majesty within the park, the typical vantage points are often crowded and not very peaceful. I recommend hiring a photographer who will be able to direct you to an appropriate trail and tag along to avoid the crowds and get the best views, simultaneously.
Donner Summit/Lake - this is home for me. Sunrise over the town of Truckee has got to be one of the best views in the world (at least to me) and I have dozens of spots up on the mountains that are perfect for you Truckee/Tahoe Elopement.
Mammoth Lakes is pictured in the bottom middle, and you can see the beautiful fall foliage. I think it, too, is a classic and iconic spot for NorCal natives. Amazing access and beautiful scenery, I also have quite a few locations here that I’ve been holding on to share with people.
Lake Tahoe - last but not least, huh? If you’ve known me for half a second, you know that I am primarily a Lake Tahoe elopement photographer, and I happen to be a bit of an expert on the area. I don’t share exact locations until you’ve booked, but trust me when I say: if you want the most help and best location, hire me.
The prettiest section of the Pacific Coast
San Francisco, Redwoods National Park, Big Sur and Mendocino - coastal beauty that cannot be beat.
San Francisco beaches are choppy and jagged. They’re dramatic and I love the idea of a coupe saying their vows with a view of the Golden Gate behind them.
The Redwoods are a special and majestic place. You look up and it feels like the trees surrounding you are miles high. The California coast has 2 iconic redwood groves: Redwoods National Park near Humboldt, and Henry Cowell state park.
Big Sur happens to be where my husband and I said “I love you” and it holds a special place in my heart because of that. I mean: LOOK AT THAT COASTLINE. I’d love to explore this area more with you!
Fort Bragg - the coastal town I spent my childhood visiting almost monthly. It’s pure magic, and has some incredible seafood, to boot.
The biggest and best that California has to offer
Epic mountains lend themselves to grandiose views representing the peaks and valleys of marriage. Mount Shasta and Mount Lassen
California boasts fifteen 14ers - that’s what we nickname 14,000 foot peaks. It’s home to expansive views, and crazy gorgeous alpenglow. In fact, I’ve named my packages after 2 of the peaks I’m about to share with you!
Mt Shasta is an obviously beautiful peak, with it’s stark contrast of constantly being covered in snow, and it’s beautiful surrounding forests. The neat thing about this mountain in particular, is that you can be miles away from it, but still see it emerging from the landscape just about anywhere.
Mt. Whitney, also known as the tallest point in the Lower 48, is a unique kind of beautiful. More southern than any of the other mountains named here, it’s in it’s own little world. I climbed Whitney in 2017 and ever since then have been dreaming of a couple to take me with them to document their elopement. How neat would that be?
White Mountain - or the trailhead, anyway, has an insane vantage point of essentially ALL of the Sierra. At some points you can pick out Mt Whitney furthest south, and then work your way north with peak after beautiful peak. The neat thing about White Mountain is that you can drive up to 12,500 feet and you don’t need a permit to hike it.
Mt. Lassen is an inactive Volcano, but it has it’s very own national park! Lassen-Volcanic National Park is expansive and unique. From thermal pools (you can’t swim in them, though!) to old forests, it’s often overlooked because of it’s location. However, I couldn’t recommend enough for you to consider this place for your elopement.
And, that concludes my favorite NorCal elopement locations! Feel free to pin the image above to save for future reference!