Maybe you have seen an adventurous couple on a rock kissing each other just there by the ropes that hold them or maybe you your self are an adventurous couple and taking photos downtown in dressy clothes to annouce you’re getting married doesn’t appeal to you and you’re looking for ideas or more information. Welp, my friend, you are in the right place! In this blog I will tell you everything you want to know about an adventure engagement session from what it is, where to do it, how to prepare, dress and more!
First things first…..
Put very simply it’s an engagement session that includes some sort of adventure. Put more in detail with more thought, it is an engagement session more rooted in who you two are as a couple. Think of it as a date that you two would typically do together or a date day you have have been dying to do together, but a photographer is coming along to capture it as well! An adventure engagement session can be as simple as exploring a beach together you have been wanting to go to or that is your favorite one you have ever been to. It can be as extreme as rock climbing a spire in Sedona to get to the top just in time for sunset! Here the world is your oyster, no adventure is too small or big. What’s important is that you get to be yourselves and connect with each other on your session!
Adventure sessions are just for those that are engaged! They are great for folks wanting to celebrate an anniversary or couples that are on a special trip to a new place. If you have a destination wedding and want to get out and explore the following day this is a great way to do it! An adventure session is truly just a great way to celebrate your love doing something you love.
For an adventure session you’re putting in a little more work! It is pretty similar in the differences between small weddings and adventure elopements. The key word is adventure, which really means whatever ‘adventuring’ means to you. To me this may mean taking a hike to beautiful outlook or going horseback riding through the country side. To the couple next door this may mean rock climbing a new pitch or sky diving!
The second biggest difference in having an adventure session is connection. While you may not be saying vows with each other it is still a very emotive experience. Every adventure session I have done with a couple I leave in awe of the moments that the couple was able to share together. There is a sense of connection, fun, carefree spirit and time that they are really expressing their love and just being with each other that allows magic to happen. One session that specifically stands out was an adventure anniversary session Sedona at the end of last year. Not only was it an adventure to even get to the location during snow storm that hit Arizona, but Kyle and Amber really took in the rare experience that was being surrounded in the red rocks in the snow and being the only people there on the trial. You may be wondering just exactly how an adventure session can be more emotional or connected than a session not out in the great outdoors. It is has been studied and proven that being outside in general can improve your stress levels, energy, memory and be calming. This in relation to your relationship helps communication and connection.
Adventure sessions are also usually longer than your average couples session. Why?? Well, you are doing an activity so naturally you will need more time. Your session will usually be as long as it would take typically for whatever activity you choose to do and then and an extra 1.5+ hours. What is great about adventure sessions is this time, because it is not rushed and allows you to really enjoy the session and time together.
The location of an adventure engagement session is truly dependent upon you two and where you want to go and what you want to do during your session. For starters National Parks, State Parks, Blm and other open lands are great places to start, but the options do not stop there. Below is a list of location options in the areas that I am based in. I live in a van and get to travel all over the country to elopements! These are just some of the BEST places for some general options:
The best time to do an engagement session in Arizona is Jan - May and October - December
The best time to do an engagement session in Utah is Feb - May and October - December
The best time for an engagement session in California greatly depends on where you session will be, some locations summer is best and some locations you do not want to be there in the summer.
The best time of year to do an engagement session in this region is typically May-September.
We breifly went over this when defining what an adventure engagement session is, but let’s dig a little deeper. Digging deeper is exactly what I recommend you two do over date night! Talk about what would make the most sense to your relationship. Talk about things you love doing together, how some of your favorite memories together were made and talk about places you love or that’s on your most go to list! Below are some ideas of activities to do at your adventure engagement session:
After you decide what type of adventure you want to do it can help you figure out where may be the best location to elope. Also, choosing where to do your session will help you decide what you can do for your session. These elements go hand in hand. Once you have both figured out you can plan the rest of your session! I will always say the most important things are communicating with yourself, your partner and your photographer about what you want out of the session, what matters most to you to come from the session and what you are comfortable with. After you have more plans into place you can decide if sunrise or sunset is the best time to hold the session. You can decide the best time of year so that you can prepare better for the weather and what to wear. Once you have location, activity, photographer booked and a time you can plan anything else you may need to like travel, lodging or booking other things you may need like an off road car, guides, tickets, etc.
What you CAN wear greatly depends on what you are doing on your session! Remember though, you can always change into something else after you have done the big adventure or got to the main area you will take photos. Here are my biggest suggestions when deciding what to wear to your engagement session:
The average cost in the United States for an Adventure Engagement session is $2500, this wildly depends on where and who you are booking. You may be wondering why is an adventure engagement session more than your average engagement session. This is because adventure engagement sessions are very much so like an adventure elopement! The session itself takes more time than showing up to a park in nice clothes at sunset and taking a few photos. The session also takes a lot more planning and preparation. A lot of the locations will require a permit that most photographers cover.
For us we do not travel for engagement sessions, but we are available all over the Western Part of the United States and Iceland throughout each year. Engagement sessions are available based on our travel schedule.
For a two hour adventure session the rate is $1500
For a four hour adventure session the rate is $2600
For a 6-8 hour adventure session the rate is $3800
We take limited bookings for these each year so be sure to inquire soon! Our adventure sessions are available for engagements, anniversaries w/o a vow renewal and ‘just because’ sessions. They include scouting, planning assistance, location idea guide, permit costs and a client gallery with high res downloads including printing rights. We believe just like your elopement day this is a great time to come together, connect and have the best date day ever together! <3