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  • Hannah Murray

Should You Elope at Sunset or Sunrise? A National Park Elopement Photographer's POV

Sunrise or sunset? As a photographer, I've been chasing light for years, trying to find the best time for photos and capturing that golden glow. When couples plan their elopement, the topic of sunrise or sunset comes up almost immediately, especially if they want those romantic glowing pictures. Both sunset and sunrise hold their magic and allure, making them incredible photo options. Sunrise promises a fresh start and new beginning, while a sunset invites romance and feelings of nostalgia. Throughout the blog, we'll dive into the pros and cons of both magical times of day and hopefully help you decide when to say "I do."

National Park elopement photographer captures bride and groom walking through field after sunrise elopement

Perks of Sunrise National Park Elopement


While both times of day will provide incredible light, sunrise lighting is different. Sunrise lighting offers images a 'glow', adding a magical element to your photos. It makes the session feel lighter and brighter! Along with the light, sunrise is a great time for families with young families or even if you and your partner are early risers. It makes for easy cooperation and stunning photos.


Few people wake up early for sunset, which is a huge perk! Especially if we're going somewhere that is usually heavily populated with visitors. A national park elopement at sunrise is a great way to ensure your privacy while giving you location flexibility. If you plan to get married outside of the park but still have a view of its beauty, you can do just that much easier.


Are you planning a summer elopement and worried about the weather? A sunrise elopement will save you all the worry! You'll be able to enjoy the summertime weather and scenery without getting too warm. A sunrise ceremony is the perfect way to get the best of both worlds. Later, invite guests for an evening reception to celebrate your recent marriage!

National Park elopement photographer captures bride and groom walking hand in hand through grassy meadow

Flexibility Day Of

If you plan to elope at sunrise, you have a little flexibility regarding the day of the ceremony. The sun will take some time to rise and get to just the right spot, so there won't be too much of a rush, and you'll be able to enjoy the sunrise for a little while afterward. However, if you were to elope at sunset, you'd be in pitch-black darkness once the sun is gone.

Perks of Sunset National Park Elopement


As I've previously mentioned, both times of day have incredible light for different reasons. But sunset is for all my couples looking for a little bit of romance. There's nothing quite like the golden sunset tones, especially when you promise your forever to your person. Sunset invites a glow that adds so much warmth and memory-making magic.


Sunset is an incredible time for couples looking for a romantic vibe to their wedding. Getting married at sunset right out of the gate invites beautiful energy and an overall vibe, but choosing to elope in a lovely spot like a national park? Unbeatable.

National Park elopement photographer captures bride and groom walking through field together after sunrise elopement


Similarly to sunrise, not many people will be around at sunset. While there will probably be a few more than at sunrise strictly because of the time of day, it'll still be a more private time. You'll be able to proclaim your love to your person surrounded by nature's beauty in privacy.

Avoid the Heat

Lastly, you can avoid the heat of being in the sun all day! Once the sun begins to set, the weather will cool exponentially, allowing both you and your guests to feel more comfortable—especially during the summer months! There's nothing worse than being hot and sticky walking down the aisle. Sunset eliminates that worry rather quickly.

Nevertheless, I promise it will be beautiful whether you plan to have your national park elopement at sunrise or sunset. Both times of day make for epic photos and incredible memories. After all, you've found your person and are marrying your best friend!

Looking for more national park elopement planning advice? Head to the blog for more!

National Park elopement photographer captures groom following bride through grassy area

Ready to meet your dream Glacier National Park elopement photographer? Reach out today!!

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