Krystalyn and Martin | Illinois Trail and Breckenridge Mountain Elopement
Savannah Chandler Photography | Breckenridge Elopement Photographer
Krystalyn and Martin’s Breckenridge Elopement and Skiing Portraits
Krystalyn and Martin met in Breckenridge.
They got engaged in Breckenridge.
It only made sense that they got married in Breckenridge.
The two of them wanted to be sure that the ceremony and family portrait locations were accessible to all family members – and after some time looking around the area they settled on Illinois Creek and near Sapphire Point.
Ceremony and Family Portraits – Getting There and Logistics
We knew that a Saturday morning might be on the busier side – however, we were pleasantly surprised when we got to the parking lot and there was ample parking.
No permits are needed in the NFS Land/Trail with under 15 people
Always follow Leave no Trace – pack everything out
Stay on the Trail
This particular trail turns into Private Property about 1 mile in (we were not near that area) – be respectful and don’t host your elopement on that portion of the trail. There were signs denoting where the private property began.
No permits are needed at Sapphire Point Overlook FOR PORTRAITS. If you want to elope here, you DO need a permit.
I HIGHLY recommend staying away from the technical “overlook”, as it’s crowded and can be reserved for elopements. We went to the Bike Path area and had no other people in that area.
Dogs are allowed in both areas with leashes.
Both areas do have ample parking lots, just be wary that weekends may be very busy.
Winter Weather in the Colorado Mountains
The week of Krystalyn and Martin’s Breckenridge elopement, the weather forecast took an interesting turn. The day before showed massive storms, with a dumping of snow on the day of their wedding as well.
Knowing that the roads leading from Denver to Breck could be nasty (or even closed), I headed up the hill a day early and watched the snow pile up. Overnight, there was nearly a foot of new snow that dropped.
The mountains have winter weather well into what many might consider Spring – we typically get our last big snowy day sometime in May.
The morning of their wedding, we woke up to blue skies and sunshine.
Be prepared for weather of all sorts, especially at higher altitudes.
Skiing on Breckenridge Mountain
Getting those amazing shots skiing and snowboarding down a mountain in wedding attire is always super fun – and super exhausting ;).
There’s a lot of stop and go involved in getting multiple angles – so be prepared for your quads to burn.
I always recommend looking at Blues (or if it’s a powder day and you’re comfortable, Blacks) as they have enough down that no one is stopping on flats and then having to unstrap (ahem, us snowboarders including myself).
Typically, two longer runs takes roughly 1.5-2 hours (yes. you read that right) and tends to be the perfect amount of time to get photos before everyone hits that “can we have some food and a drinky drink” point.
The Deets: Getting Married and Skiing Together as Newlyweds
With a foot of new snow blanketing the ground, Breckenridge was looking rather magical. I got a text from Krystalyn saying that they were heading down the gondola around 10 am and we packed everything up and headed over to the Illinois Creek Trailhead.
Family and friends had already arrived and set up everything about 1/4 mile down the trail tucked away in the pines. The amazing man who walked Krystalyn down the aisle, a family friend turned family, met us at the car to head into the fresh snow.
Martin was down at the ceremony site with his parents awaiting his bride.
As everyone walked down the aisle and took their places to witness Krystalyn and Martin’s nuptials, numerous people stepped just an inch off the trail and went knee deep into fresh powder.
After the I Do’s, some champagne cheers, and some Ski-cuterie – we all headed up Swan Mountain road to get some family photos at Sapphire Point Overlook.
The roadside was covered in snow – making for the most beautiful family and friend portraits. Was it super bright out? Yes. Yes it was. Was it worth looking into the blazing sun? Again, yes.
A quick stop by the condo followed family portraits, and then those who ski headed up the lift to get a few runs in. The lifties are always SO EXCITED to see a wedding couple getting onto the chairlift. Many high-fives were doled out, and even shots of fireball were gifted upon Krystalyn and Martin.
The snow was actually quite nice – a little bumpy and starting to slush with the temperature and sunshine, but it made for a nice ride down the hill.
Congratulations again, and I can’t wait to see more photos from Breckenridge from the two of you over the years.