How to Elope in California
A helpful guide
Tunnel View, Yosemite National Park.
Full name, address, place of birth, and date of birth for you AND your partner.
Name and birth places for each of your parents, including mother’s maiden name.
Valid, government issued photo ID for both of you. Such as: valid driver’s license, passport, military ID, or state issued ID.
$90-100 cash for the application fee. The exact amount varies by each county.
For those who have been divorced previously, you will also need to know the date of the dissolution. For a divorce finalized less than six months prior, then you will also need a copy of your recent divorce decree.
Speaking of officiants!
I AM A LICENSED OFFICIANT IN THE U.S.
Yosemite National Park
Leave no trace!
Plan ahead and prepare
Stay on paths and hard surfaces
The use of undesignated trails can lead to erosion, vegetation damage, unsafe trail conditions, and impacts to local wildlife according to this study.
Areas like meadows, wetlands, and places closed for restoration are especially fragile and easily damaged.
Look up regulations before your visit
Research if a permit is required
Only bring dogs or pets in areas where they’re allowed and always follow leash rules
Know the maximum number of people you can bring with you if you’re eloping
Prepare for extreme weather and emergencies
Leave what you find
Pack it in, pack it out
Simply pack out your garbage. Also know that things like confetti, as well as biodegradable foods and their peels need to be packed out as well.
Look at this graphic to see how long it takes things like food and cigarette to decompose.
The photos are your souvenirs.
Resist the temptations to pick flowers, stack rocks, or carve your name into anything.
Minimize campfire impacts
Be considerate of other visitors
Keep fires small. Use only sticks from the ground that can be broken by hand.
Burn all wood and coals to ash, put out campfires completely, then scatter cool ashes.
Don't bring firewood from home, which could introduce new pests and diseases. Buy it from a local source or gather it responsibly where allowed.
The wilderness belongs to everyone. Simply because someone is documenting a special moment there does not mean they have privilege over others.
If you’d like privacy, consider doing your photos at sunrise, sunset, on a weekday, or avoid peak season.
Give animals their space, don’t try to feed them, and always control your pets or leave them at home.
Keep in mind that disturbance from humans can indirectly affect animals’ fitness and population dynamics through energy loss and opportunity costs of risk avoidance in wildlife according to the science behind leave no trace principles.
Hello, deer. Sequoia National Park