Lake Powell is an incredible elopement location for so many different reasons. This man made reservoir off the Colorado river is filled with gorgeous clear blue water and surrounded by red rock canyon walls. The lake itself stretches over 1960 miles of shoreline, meaning there’s endless options for your location. This Lake Powell guide is going to cover how to elope in Lake Powell, as well as gorgeous Lake Powell Elopement locations.

Where is Lake Powell

Lake Powell is both in Utah and Arizona. However, only a small part of the lake is located in Northern Arizona. While the rest is primarily in Southern Utah. The best way to get to Lake Powell is by renting a car after flying into the Phoenix International Airport, or the Salt Lake City airport. Both airports are about a four hour drive away from Lake Powell.

Lake powell elopement

When to Elope in Lake Powell

The best time for an elopement in Lake Powell is going to depend on how much heat you like and what you want to do. The shoulder season of late spring is going to have less tourism and people, things like house boats (which I totally recommend to explore the lake) are much cheaper. If you’d like to be in warmer weather and swim in the lake, June is a great time. Prices for boats will be more expensive but the water will be extremely warm.

Peak summer in July and August are scorching hot and might make it challenging to be outside most of the day for an elopement. Meanwhile, winter is super cold and it’s not easy to explore the lake.

Lake Powell Wedding Permit

To elope at Lake Powell, you will need a special use permit from the Glen Canyon Permit Office. To do this, you’ll need to go to their website and fill out the application and pay a $300 fee. You’ll want to apply at least 45 day in advance, as recommended on their website, for processing.

Lake powell elopement

How to Get a Lake Powell Marriage License

To get a marriage license for a Lake Powell elopement, you will need to decide if you’ll be on the Arizona side of the lake, or the Utah side of the lake. This matters because you will have to visit a clerk county in the state that you’re getting married in to receive your marriage license. Once you decide where you’re eloping, you can go to the website of the nearest clerk county to your location.

From here, you will apply online and pay a $83 fee for Arizona or a $50 fee for Utah. Prior to your elopement, you will both have to appear in person to pick up your marriage license. You can do this right before your elopement, just make sure to pay the fee to waive the three day waiting period if you plan to use it right away.

How to Elope at Lake Powell

You plan a Lake Powell elopement in similar ways as you’d plan any adventure elopement. There are a few major steps, and you can read about those here on my thorough guide on how to elope. For this Lake Powell elopement guide, I’m going over the major things you’ll need to consider!


This is an imperative part of the planning process for elopements. This is because some guests won’t have the hiking ability, some might not want to drive on rocky roads, and others won’t be able to spend a whole day in the sun. Choosing a location will be much easier once you’ve determine who you’re inviting, and how many guests total you’ll have.


This might feel early in the planning process, but bear with me. Elopements don’t have wedding planners. Most elopement photographers have taken it upon themselves to help couples with some of the planning. Many actually help you find your location! And they will think of things you might not have considered, such as: lighting, elevation, difficulty in hiking in a dress, permits, and so much more.

Each elopement photographer offers something different. Personally, I send my couples a customized list of locations based on their preferences, hiking ability, who they want to invite, and what they want to see. I also help them determine lodging options, get permits, get their marriage license, recommend vendors, and create a comprehensive day of timeline, and offer unlimited guidance calls for any questions along the way.

The being said, hiring your Lake Powell elopement photographer early is going to take a massive amount of planning stress off of your shoulders. Wanna chat? Contact me here!


This is going to help you choose a date and location. Summer in the desert can be brutal, and winter can be cold, but with much less tourism. There’s also a time of year for wildflowers and much milder weather, and times of the year where it’s easy to completely avoid rain. Picking the weather you’d like to be in will help you greatly decide what time of year to elope.


Once you’ve decided on how much you’d like to hike, how many guests are coming, your ideal weather, and the landscapes you want, you’re ready to deep dive into researching Lake Powell elopement locations. Finding the perfect spot will be a lot simpler after considering all of your needs and logistics.

This is information I collect from my couples through a questionnaire, and then use to make a customized list of Lake Powell elopement location options for them.


Once you have your location, it’s time to consider if there’s anything you need vendors for. Do you need any event rentals? Do you want a friend or family to officiate, or do you want to hire an officiant? Will you go out to eat, or do you want something catered, like a meal at an Airbnb from a private chef?

Figure out what extra services you may want, and hire your vendors in advance!


You will need to get the correct permits for your elopement. These are usually “special use” permits that you apply for on the National Parks website, or National Forest/BLM website.

Personally, I get all permit information for my eloping couples that hire me. With that, all you need to do is fill out the application when it’s sent to you and pay the fee. Fee’s vary, but are usually around $150 or less.


Activities are such a fun part of an elopement. When you choose to elope, you’re opening yourself up to having a wedding day celebration that feels unique and resonates with you. Incorporate things that will elevate your elopement day experience. Here’s just a few ideas to get you brainstorming:

  • Going on a hike
  • Having a bonfire
  • Star-gazing or astrophotography
  • Swimming
  • Cliff jumping
  • Visiting waterfalls
  • Camping
  • Glamping
  • Hiring a private chef
  • Hot air balloon ride
  • Kayaking
  • Paddleboarding
  • Sightseeing
  • Scenic driving with time to stop for pictures
  • Exchanging gifts
  • Reading letters from friends or family


Making a timeline is an important part of any elopement. It strings together all of your locations, activities, and lets guests know where to be and when. Creating a well thought out timeline will help you feel relaxed during the day, instead of stressed or rush. Make sure to include drive times as well as buffer times between each “event.”

Here are the things I include in the timelines I make for my couples:

  • All addresses
  • Sunrise time
  • Sunset time
  • Drive times
  • A linke to Accuweather
  • A list of all names for group shots
  • Vendor info
  • Emergency contact info
  • A packing list

Lodging in Lake Powell

Lodging is an important factor to elopements. Since you won’t be using a venue, your rental space is where you will get ready, or possibly hold an intimate reception if you want one and are having guests. You’ll want to pick a lodging location that isn’t far from your ceremony location, so that you don’t spend a chunk of your day driving. You have the options of hotels, resorts, Airbnb’s, and with lake Powell, even house boats!

Here is a list of lodging options for Lake Powell elopements including everything above:

Lake Powell House Boats

The best way to explore Lake Powell hands down is on a house boat. You’re able to get around various sections of the lake that can’t be accessed by car, and aren’t filled with crowds. A house boat elopement is a super unique way to tie the knot. If you want guests, you can even have them obtain their own house boats. Reception on a lake? Hell yes. With house boats you can elope on land or on the boat.

Same goes for a reception and food. You can have a private chef set something up for you on the boat, and even get tables or chairs. Or you could go onto land with a picnic set up, or have a barbecue. It’s easy to bring a lot of the things with you due to the size of the boats.

How Much Does it Cost to Elope in Lake Powell

With a special use permit of $300 and a $50 marriage license, it costs $350.00 to elope in Lake Powell. That being said, most couples spend an average of $5000-$20,000 on their elopement. This includes flights, lodging, permits, vendors, wedding attire, meals, and anything extra a couple might want.

Lake Powell Elopement Locations

There are a lot of different Lake Powell elopement locations. Some can be accessed on a hike, others are drive up locations, some you will have to rent a jeep tour for, and finally, you have the option of exploring lake Powell and getting to your elopement location on a house boat. Here are some Lake Powell elopement locations:

Warm Creek Bay

Warm Creek bay is only a few miles from Wahweap Marina. However, Warm Creek doesn’t have easy public access and will be less crowded arriving on boat. There are a ton of sandy beaches and coves here!

Lone Rock Beach

Lone Rock Beach is a popular location that can be accessed by car, good for couples who want to explore Lake Powell for their elopement but don’t plan on renting a boat. You can also rent out things like kayaks to explore other areas and get away from crowds!

Padre Bay

Lake powell elopement

Padre Bay has some of the most incredible views on this list of Lake Powell elopement locations. I’m really just saying that as a personal bias, but it truly is stunning. The red rock that surrounds it makes it feel like being in the Grand Canyon.

Gunsight Bay

Lake powell elopement

Gunsight bay is another breath taking Lake Powell elopement location. Theres 186 miles of colorful rock formations as well as natural arches. This leaves so much room to explore and not be surrounded by a ton of other people. The best way to get here is by boat.

Face Canyon

Lake powell elopement

Face Canyon is another beautiful Lake Powell elopement location with bright blue water, and coves. This is a good place to be able to explore, as well as get out and swim.

West Canyon

Lake powell elopement

If you love Natural Arches and being on the water, West Canyon has this gorgeous location called rainbow bridge. A stunning Arch that actually goes OVER the water.

Lake Powell Elopement Packages

Elopement photography by Emilee Setting Photo, and everything included in my packages:

  • Explore anywhere within Utah, all travel fees included in the price!
  • Packages from half day elopements to multi-day elopements
  • Receive a customized location list
  • Help finding lodging that suits your needs if you’re having an intimate reception
  • Included comprehensive timeline design
  • Help obtaining your permits
  • Help obtaining your marriage license
  • A planning checklist
  • Unlimited planning and guidance calls 
  • All of your stunning photos delivered under three months
  • Day of polaroid sneak peeks

Lake Powell elopement packages starting at $6800. Want more information on my pricing and what’s included? Click here

Lake powell elopement

Ready to Elope at Lake Powell?

This Lake Powell elopement guide is a way to get you excited about all the possibilities of what your day could look like. Although, this amount of information can be overwhelming. I’m here to help. I can answer any and all questions you have on a complimentary low pressure consultation call. If you then choose you’d like to work together, I’ll do all of this planning right by your said to alleviate any stress, and bring your xxx elopement vision to life. We can chat here!

Don't forget your free elopement planning checklist


You see a stranger’s puppy & it takes everything in you not to run up & cuddle it.

Your dress gets dirt on it, and you shrug.

You think ice cream & wine is always an acceptable dinner option. Always.

You LIVE for the feeling of sunshine on your skin & wind in your hair.

You’re already screaming YASSSS WHERE DO I BOOK YOU?

I'm Emilee

I'm an elopement photographer who specializes in planning, crafting, and documenting untraditional weddings. I believe a wedding day should be filled with traditions that resonate with you. I'm here from start to finish to make that happen. Want to chat about your plans? Click below to set up a free consultation! 

You see a stranger’s puppy & it takes everything in you not to run up & cuddle it.

Your dress gets dirt on it, and you shrug.

You think ice cream & wine is always an acceptable dinner option. Always.

You LIVE for the feeling of sunshine on your skin & wind in your hair.

You’re already screaming YASSSS WHERE DO I BOOK YOU?

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