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Aspen Colorado Elopemet Guide

Why Elope in Aspen, Colorado

• Easily Accessible Year-Round. The Aspen Valley is a popular place to be at nearly every month. The shoulder seasons (between winter sports and summer access) tend to be slower with some places closed to reset and ready for the next season.

Stunning Mountain Views. It’s no secret – Aspen is beautiful. The town as well as all of the surrounding areas boast some of Colorado’s most iconic views. The valleys are full of Aspen trees (where the town gets it’s namesake from) and the peaks are varying shades of rust red, majestic blue, and some are an interesting granite white.

• There’s tons to do and a hopping nightlife. Of all the mountain towns that I’ve visited, Aspen has the most to do once the sun goes down. Not only can you find amazing food, but there’s speakeasys to be found and one of the most famous mountain nightclubs. You might spot some celebs hanging in town as well.

• Adventure Opportunities. The Maroon Bells are not the only amazing views in the Aspen valley. If you’re looking for a hiking adventure – some of the best hikes in the state start in the area. Some of the more infamously difficult adventures in the state are in the Aspen valley – such as Capitol Peak and other 14ers.

The Skiing is incredible. If a winter elopement on the slopes is your style – you’ve found the right place. Snowmass resort has views looking out over the Maroon Bells, while Aspen mountain has great views and amazing snow.

How to Get to Aspen and Where to Stay

Reaching Aspen by Air
10 airports fly non-stop directly into Aspen/Pitkin County Airport (ASE) on United, Delta, and American Airlines. You can find direct flights from Denver, Chicago O’Hare, San Fransisco, Los Angeles, Houston, Dallas/Ft Worth, Salt Lake City, Atlanta, and Minneapolis/St. Paul. Starting winter 2024, you can also fly seasonally from Phoenix.

The drive into the town of Aspen from ASE is 3 mile.

Additional Airport Options
If flights into Aspen are unavailable, you can look at flying into Eagle County Airport (EGE) which is 70 miles East of Aspen, Grand Junction (GJT) which is 130 miles West of Aspen, or if you’re looking for a unique experience, Sentient Jet offers Private Jet Transfers.

Reaching Aspen by Vehicle
To reach the Aspen valley, head West on I-70 to the Glenwood Springs exit (157 miles from Denver), turn South and continue for 41 miles.

In the summer months, you can take the slightly faster (and very scenic) route over Independence Pass. The Pass is typically open from late May through late October – weather dependent. To reach Aspen via Independence Pass, drive West from Denver to the Copper Mountain Exit (77 miles), proceed south towards Leadville on Highway 91. In the town of Leadville, continue South on Highway 24 until you get to the turn for Twin Lakes an Highway 82. It’s about 40 miles from Twin Lakes over Independence Pass to Aspen.

Where to Stay in Aspen
There’s no way around it – staying in Aspen is expensive. It’s an incredibly walkable town, and very charming. But if you’re looking for a more wallet-friendly option, look into Carbondale, Glenwood Springs, or Snowmass (in the summer many of the Ski Chalets are more budget friendly).

St Regis Aspen

• Downtown Aspen
• 5 Star Resort
• Amazing Bar
• Pet Friendly
• Price Range: $$$$$

The Inn at Aspen

• Ski In/Ski Out at Buttermilk
• Just outside of Downtown
• Easy access to Maroon Bells Road
• Price Range: $$ – $$$

The Residences at The Little Nell

• Incredible Views
• Wedding Deck where you can elope
• Pet Friendly
• 5 Star Resort
• Price Range: $$$$$

Hotel Jerome

• In Downtown Aspen
• Can have a private rooftop dinner
• Built in 1889, has old world charm
• Pet Friendly
• Price Range: $$$$ – $$$$$

The Gant Aspen

• In Downtown Aspen
• Ski in/Ski Out
• Price Range: $$$ – $$$$

Mountain Chalet Inn

• In downtown Aspen
• Pet Friendly
• One of the more affordable options in the town of Aspen
• Price Range: $$ – $$$

Obtaining a Marriage License

You can obtain a Marriage License in Pitkin County no sooner than 30 days before your elopement.
• Visit the Pitkin County Website to fill out their Online Application
• Schedule an Appointment on the same Website (take note of your transaction number)
• Bring the following to your appointment: Both drivers licenses, your application transaction number, and a $30 payment.
• The Office is located at 530 E Main St, Ste 104, Aspen, CO 81611.

Colorado DOES NOT require a witness or officiant. You can Self-Solemnize, or marry yourselves. As long as you have your marriage certificate and a pen – you’re ready to go! For the location on your marriage license, you can put the physical location (EX: Crater Lake), a description of the locations (EX: A meadow of wildflowers beneath Maroon Peak), or the Coordinates of your ceremony site. Fun Fact: Your dog, cat, or whomever you’d like can sign as a witness. You can also have as may witnesses as you’d like – everyone in attendance can sign if you so desire.

Where to Elope in Aspen and Permit Information

Aspen is the gateway to so many amazing mountain views. In the summer, the hillsides are a lush green with wildflowers popping up everywhere. Fall time in Aspen is spectacular – the town is a namesake for the the tree that is everywhere in sight. The hillsides turn a bright gold and it’s one of the best places in all of Colorado to experience fall. Winter the valley is covered in Champagne Powder and the skiing is world class. Expect to see big names in the ski/snowboard world (and possibly celebrities walking downtown). Spring is the only season that’s a little interesting as many places close between ski season and when the snow melts for summer. You can still find things to do, but know that many places will be closed.

Maroon Bells Amphitheater

• Permit is required. VERY hard to get, need to book one year in advance.
• Views of Maroon Bells
• Private access to the amphitheater
• 5 cars get permits to park onsite

Castle Creek

• No Permits needed
• 4×4 needed to access the road
• Stunning views of the Elk mountains
• Very private besides hikers hiking the road


• No Permits needed
• Accessible year-round
• Can be accessed with any vehicle
• Next to a very serene river

Cathedral Lake

• No Permits needed
• Hike into – rated moderate to difficult (AllTrails link)
• Can backpack into
• Option to hike above the lake to Electric Pass for Summit views

Crater Lake

• No permit needed, but do need either a parking pass or take the shuttle to the Maroon Bells Trailhead
• Hike into – rated easy to moderate (AllTrails link)
• Need permits to backpack if desired
• Can continue onto W Maroon Pass

Independence Pass

• No permit needed
• Accessible by all vehicles
• Road is seasonal (closed late Fall – late Spring)
• Can hike along the ridgelines/peaks

Longer hikes and backpacking trips

I’m always ready for those longer days and hikes! Don’t forget to ask about some of the hidden Local Gems that I keep in my back pocket as well.

Snowmass Lake

• Wilderness permit is required to backpack
• Shortest Route: 14 miles roundtrip from near Marble (AllTrails Link).
•Standard Route: 16.5 miles roundtrip from Maroon Trailhead (AllTrails Link). Also requires a parking permit.
• Both routes to reach Snowmass Lake climb over a pass with spectacular views.

Castle and Conundrum Peaks

• No permits needed
• Both 14,000+ mountains
• Can hike just Castle or Both (need to hike Castle to reach Conundrum).
• Hikes are considered difficult ( Link)
• Best option is to 4×4 to the upper trailhead, making both peaks 8 miles roundtrip.

Four Pass Loop

• Backpacking Loop – Wilderness Permits required
• Multi-day recommended.
• Hike is considered difficult (AllTrails Link)
• You ascend and descend 4 passes with phenomenal views
• If accessing from Aspen, a parking permit is needed for Maroon Bells trailhead.

Willow Lake

• No permits required
• 17 miles Roundtrip (AllTrails Link)
• Backpacking highly recommended
• You climb over a pass to reach the lake, with great views from the top.

Capitol Lake

• Overnight Wilderness Permit required if backpacking. No permit if day hiking.
• 12 Miles Roundtrip to the lake (AllTrails Link).
• Can continue to an overlook or onto Capitol peak – a VERY dangerous 14er. Be prepared if hiking the peak.
• Amazing views from the meadow on the hike in as well.

What to do in Aspen and Nightlife

T Lazy 7 Ranch. Family owned an operated since 1938, the provide tours year round. In winter, you can take snowmobiling tours (including to the Maroon Bells since the road closes to vehicles) and winter Sleigh rides. In summer, they provide Horseback rides and Fly Fishing guides. You can also stay at the Ranch, and they host weddings and events if you’re looking for a venue to host your elopement.

Silver Queen Gondola. In winter, this is your ticket to amazing skiing or snowshoeing (they have trails up top for those who don’t ski). In summer and fall, enjoy the spectacular views on the way up top. You can hike many trails, dine at the mountain top restaurant, and possibly catch some live music.

White Water Rafting. There are multiple companies in the Aspen valley that provide different levels of rafting. Cost varies among each company, as does age limits. With young children (7-12), check out Colorado Adventure Center . For a more intense experience (Class III and IV), White Water Rafting LLC might be for you.

Glenwood Caverns and Adventure Park. Check out a guided cave tour, or swing out over the canyon on the Giant Canyon Swing. There’s rides for the whole family, as well as Western themed fun and games for all.

Nightlife Bars and Clubs. Aspen is the only mountain town that provides a huge party scene with world renowned Nightclubs. Escobar is a smaller in space, but large in atmosphere location. If you want guaranteed entry, be sure to make a table reservation (especially on the weekends). The Sterling is a Lounge and Nightclub that offers a variety of music alongside craft cocktails. Belly Up has live music from national acts (and local acts as well) and has great food to go along with their famous atmosphere. Check their website for their lineup. The Hotel Jerome J Bar has an old West vibe and is where people of all walks of life come to socialize with amazing drinks. Much less of a party, more for those looking to relax and have a fine dining experience. Hooch calls themselves “Like your living room, only more fun”. A more laid back vibe that still puts emphasis on crafting amazing cocktails.

Ready to Book your Aspen Elopement?