Why an Alaskan Winter Elopement Can be More Fun Than You’d Think

Why an Alaskan Winter Elopement Can be More Fun Than You’d Think

Everybody I know form the lower 48 looks at me like I’m insane when I tell them one of my favorite months in AK is February. Hear me out though, an Alaskan winter elopement might be more amazing than you’d expect. If you hate the cold and are low on the outdoor adventure scale, I won’t waste your time cause this definitely isn’t for everybody, but if you’re feeling intrigued, read on.  

1. February Has Some Great Weather Conditions

While there are multiple locations within Alaska to elope I’m mostly going to speak to the Anchorage and Mat-Su Valley area as that is the one I know best. In the area around Anchorage, Dec and Jan have a lot of fluctuating temperatures as in 20s-30s. We spend a lot of time snowing, melting, freezing, repeat. Generally by February however, it snows and sticks and to add to the wonder of the month the daylight has started to return and there aren’t as many overcast days. So if you like the idea of a romantic winter wonderland wedding this might be the ideal location for you. Imagine the sun shining over a pristine wilderness covered in white with majestic peaks towering in the background. Even if you happen to get unlucky and it starts snowing during your wedding. There’s much worse things than watching snow flakes gently fall around you as you embrace your one true love and promise each other forever wrapped in a snowy wonderland.

 2. We Have Embraced Winter Fun Here

 It might just be the fact we spend so much time in winter in Alaska we’ve had to cultivate these activities to save our sanity but that doesn’t mean you can’t take advantage of all the adventurous outdoor opportunities. If you’re feeling like adding some fun and creativity to your special day you can incorporate a sled dog ride to your location or snow shoe to your desired spot. Once you’ve said your vows and are ready to have some honeymoon adventures there are plenty to be had. If you want to do some winter hiking there are tours to Matanuska Glacier, or there are tours that involve riding a fat tire bike to Knick Glacier. You can also go ice climbing, ice fishing, or ice skating. If you just want to find a cabin and curl up in front of a fire with the one you love and a hot chocolate that is also totally doable as well, usually at a reduced price due to the perks of off season pricing.

 3. Off Season Means Less People and Better Prices

You won’t have to compete with as many people for your preferred photographer, videographer, officiant, planner, etc. The summer wedding season is hopping here in Alaska but so few people realize how amazing February can be here, that it is and under appreciated time to get married so you definitely will have more opportunity to get what you are looking for. Another perk of the winter is there are not nearly as many tourists which means it’s a lot easier to find a good deal on an airline ticket, rental car, and lodging.

 4. Northern Lights Viewing Wrapped in the Arms of Your Love

 I would be remiss if I did not mention how great an opportunity this can be. If you’ve dreamed of exchanging your vows under the northern lights or have always just wanted to view them with your partner, February is a great time to do that. Anchorage isn’t always the best spot for viewing due to weather and bright lights but Fairbanks is an easy 45 minute flight from Anchorage with plenty of tour options to be had there. If you don’t want to go that far north however, and are comfortable driving in winter conditions there are any number of locations north of Anchorage where you can book a cabin or lodge room with windows viewing north so you don’t even have to leave the comfort of your room to watch for activity. Just be prepared, the lights don’t always come out until late at night so consider getting a nap before you set out for your northern lights adventure. If you want to check the forecast for lights in Alaska there is a great website that helps you find peak days within the month. https://www.gi.alaska.edu/monitors/aurora-forecast

 5. Beautiful Striking Photos

If you are the kind of person who likes bright colors, winter capes, and snow capped mountains this is an amazing place for photographs that will capture both the beautiful scenery and your fairytale wedding style. Red roses or cherry colored capes against crystal white snow produce a striking look. You can create an eloquent winter theme or just pull on your wool socks and winter boots and find a snowy meadow to visit and say your vows. Either way it’s hard to get a bad photo on a beautiful winter day with 2 people who are in love and want to capture their special memories.

  A Few Safety Tips to Remember

Alaska is beautiful but it does have some harsh conditions, so make sure if you are planning on driving here you have the experience and ability to handle winter weather conditions.Bring the right gear and clothing, winter is spectacularly beautiful but can also get pretty chilly depending on what area you are in so come prepared with the right clothes to stay warm.If you are planning on adventuring either go with a trusted tour company or make sure you have the experience and skill to do what you are wanting to do. Always check avalanche and weather conditions before heading into the mountains or any backcountry areas.