Madi and Kyle Elope in Big Cottonwood Canyon, Utah
I’ve been so excited to share this sweet couple's elopement. They traveled from Southern California to elope at Utah’s Salt Flats. I always help my couples plan their elopements, and I wanted to share some helpful tips from the planning process of this couple’s little elopement. Hope it’s helpful, feel free to share with any couples that might be considering eloping at the Salt Flats!
Consider the weather/time of year
There are two typical conditions you’ll find at the salt flats, wet and dry. When the flats are dry, that’s when you get those classic textured white salt crystals. If it has recently been raining or snowing in the area, the salt flats can be flooded, providing a dramatic reflection of the sky and nearby mountains. The day of this elopement, the flats were both flooded and it was windy, giving us a totally different look! While weather can always vary, planning your elopement at Utah’s Salt Flats dependent on average precipitation can help you plan for which look you prefer. Either way, the Salt Flats make a stunning backdrop for an elopement or intimate wedding! Check here to view average temperatures and precipitation levels for the Salt Flats.
2. Have a killer officiant
Even if you want your wedding to be as small as possible, having an officiant can help make your ceremony even more meaningful and special. There are lots of ways you can do this, have a friend or family member get ordained online, hire a local officiant, still include personal vows, or just have the officiant conduct the whole ceremony. Click here to get information on how to make your elopement or wedding legal in Utah, including how to become ordained. My personal favorite minister in Utah to perform ceremonies is Anita Gordon. She is present and kind, and brings both professionalism and a personal touch to ceremonies. I’ve been lucky to work with Anita on several elopements and weddings- from the desert to mountains. Click here for her information!
3. Plan where you stay (1.5 hour drive)
If you are not from Utah, you might be surprised to learn that the Salt Flats are about an 1.5 hour drive from Salt Lake. The closest town is Wendover, but I recommend looking into a hotel or Airbnb in downtown Salt Lake. You’ll be able to get on the freeway quickly, and then have access to lots of food and after-elopement celebrations downtown when you return! There is only one gas station on the way, and it’s often closed, so make sure to fill up and grab water before you hit the road!
4. Plan a fun activity for after your ceremony
While the Salt Flats are remote, there are still several things you could plan to continue the celebration after you say your “I dos!” This couple opted for a campfire, drinks and s’mores, but you could also incorporate one of these activities:
Take a 4X4 road through the desert or around the great Salt Lake
Pop into Wendover for a buffet or to try your newlywed luck at a slot machine
Have a campfire and include desert (Make sure to check local fire regulations)
Bar hop with your person in downtown Salt Lake
Include something else special that you two like to do together, it’s your day!
5. Include some traditions
Just because you’ve decided to elope doesn’t mean you can’t include some traditions that feel right and meaningful to you.
Share a toast together or with your guests who are present
Share a desert. Pick up a treat from a local bakery, whatever you two like to enjoy together!
Share a first dance with your partner, or dance with your parents if they are present
If you’ve eloped and loved what you and your person did, share in the comments.
Keep scrolling to see this pretty and windy Salt Flats elopement! Make sure to get to the bottom to see their beautiful video created by Shey Allen Films.