So you’re looking into the Grand Teton wedding ceremony permit locations, so excited for you! The Tetons are a special and memorable place, you won’t regret getting married there. This is a lot of information and probably not a light read, but if you’re seriously trying to figure out which spot to apply for, I hope I can help. 

When legally getting married in the park, a permit is required and you’ll have several options on location. This gives you flexibility as well as options based on what kind of backdrop you want and how many people will be attending. 

Firstly, keep in mind these things.  

  1. Permits are for the actual ceremony only, you can still take photos all over the park without permits for everywhere you go. 
  2. A permit does NOT mean you have the spot to yourself. You cannot kick other park visitors out of the way. Most people are respectful but regardless, can’t make them move.
  3. Park rangers often are present for the permit time and place. So don’t try to do anything that the park/permit doesn’t allow.
  4. In Off season most of these locations can be permitted for groups of 12 or less using the small dispersed ceremony permit, which I touch on below.
  5. Some locations sell out in a matter of weeks from the date applications open, so be on top of it if you can. If you’re planning something more last minute there’s still options for you.
  6. Leave no trace. Flower petals, alters, loud music, decorations and the likes are not permitted.
  7. All this info and more is on the NPS website, as well as the info on how to apply.

It can be hard to plan and apply for a spot that you have limited info on, especially if you haven’t seen it first hand. That’s why I’ve written this post, to hopefully help couples decide which spot suits them. I have photographed ceremonies at all of the options and I’d love to share the pros, cons, criteria, and some opinions as a photographer. 

One thing before we start,

GTNP recently added what they call “small dispersed ceremony permit”, which is a different than what this post is focused on. This dispersed permit is for 12 or less guests, in spots that may or may not include the “site specific” options we will cover below. Basically you will apply for a place using coordinates. This option is perfect for couples who have a special spot in mind, want to do it in off season (Nov-April) or for couples who trust their photographer/planner to find them a less busy, off the beaten path spot. I have done this for couples as well and I love helping them pick a spot. If you want to go this route, I suggest researching, exploring or trusting someone with experience to help you. This option has a pro: permits are available year round, not just May-Oct like the site specific permits. 

Ok, now for the Teton wedding ceremony permit locations. 

Site specific permits for 2024 are available to obtain May 10 2024-October 20 2024. 2025 permit applications should start December 2024.

  1. Schwabacher landing

*sold out for 20204. This is the most sought after permit from my experience. It sells out extremely quick, so as of January it’s already sold out for 2024. Allows for up to 25 people on permit.

Pros: beautiful, central location, plenty of parking typically, water, trees, and mountain peak views. This spot in fall is elite. 

Cons: very busy, might involve a walk so keep that in mind if you have elderly folk. This location is at the end of the trail, so park visitors hiking will funnel right behind you. 

  1. Mormon row (north and south)

The famous Mormon row barns you see associated with GTNP are both a site specific location. North Mormon the spot the park specifies is off to the north side of the barn. So the barn won’t be on the photo if you want the Tetons in the background. This is nice because people usually won’t be gathering around the back side of the barn. North Mormon allows for up to 40 people.

The exact spot they have mapped out for South Mormon barn is off to the south side of the barn, so the barn will be in the background with the mountains. South Mormon allows for up to 25 people. 

Pros: barns are another background focus in case of the mountains being clouded in. Historic, central, grand view of the mountain ranch. Absolutely beautiful at sunset.

Cons: very very busy, Parking can be a joke periodically during the day. South Mormon might have park visitors between you and the barn, meaning they might be in the background. 

3. Glacier view turnout

Iconic view of the mountains, beautiful spot with the range as well as the valley below. Extremely easy to get to. You can have up to 25 people here.

Pros: you could have your dog here, accessible for people who can’t walk far. Parking is good. The spot is on the edge of the hill, so park visitors can’t walk behind you. 

Cons: on the highway so traffic noises. This also makes it often busy with people waking around. 

  1. Colter bay swim beach

*Sold out for 2024. If you want water in the background of your ceremony, this is it! Just incredible views. It is the furthest from Jackson if that affects you. 

Pros: easier to get away from crowds as you have a good chunk of the beach to use. Toilets right there, picnic areas if you want to picnic with everyone. 40 people can be there with you in peak season, 12 or less in off season. 

Cons: I’ll have to think about this one haha. 

  1. Snake river overlook 

This is where the famous Ansel Adams photo was taken. Such a cool spot, really neat view of the mountains and it’s all paved. 

Pros: easy to get to, accessible. 

Cons: right off highway, there is a rock wall with signs that blocks view of river from camera, park visitors can walk behind you to get a look of the view themselves.

  1. Mountain View turnout

Probably my favorite Teton wedding ceremony location. The Tetons are jagged in the background & you’re standing in a field of sagebrush. Up to 25 people allowed on permit

Pros: people don’t really walk behind you unless they want to be assholes. Backdrop is a little more unique than the head on view. Seems less busy than some of the other options. 

Cons: off the Teton Park Road (not highway), so some traffic noise. 

That concludes the 6 site Specific Teton wedding ceremony permit locations!

Hopefully that gives you some clarity around each spot. One of my biggest suggestion is to hire a photographer or planner who can help guide you with the permit, local vendor recommendations as well as a strong wedding day timeline based on your location. It really helps take some of the stress off of you to have a team of people experienced in the Tetons to give you an amazing wedding experience. If you like the photos here I love to be considered! You can see my info and work here! 

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