Looking for jaw dropping golden gate bridge engagement photos, but away from the crowds?! This engagement session is for you!
Kirby Cove is officially one of my favorite places to take photos in Northern California! It has sweeping views of the golden gate bridge, rolling lush hills, a cypress/eucalyptus/pine tree forest, and a misty beach that gives alllll the moody Oregon coast vibes! Seriously- it has it all! If you’re looking for variety in your images and don’t mind an easy 3-mile round trip hike, consider taking your photos here! Quick note- the trial is downhill on the way to the beach and uphill on the way back so plan accordingly!
When to take Kirby Cove engagement photos
First, let’s talk about timing! I highly recommend taking your photos on a weekday to avoid any potential crowds! When I went on this Thursday, we had the whole beach to ourselves nearly the entire time. Most of the time you can expect a beautiful overcast day, however, the sunsets and sunrises here are pretty unreal. The sunsets face the bridge which lights it up while the sun rises behind it for a beautiful glow in your photos! You really can’t go wrong!!
Parking at Golden Gate Bridge
To access the best viewpoint of the Golden Gate Bridge and the ~1.5 mile hike down to Kirby Cove, park at Spencer Battery in the Marin Headlands. It’s a fairly small parking lot, so give yourself some extra time knowing it’s a possibility you’ll have to wait for parking! The good news is that a lot of people park there just to get a quick snap of the Golden Gate Bridge so just be patient and a spot will open up in no time!!
Planning your Kirby Cove Engagement Photos
Okay so now that you know when to go and where to park, let’s talk about planning the perfect experience!! Here’s what I recommend:
- Park at Spencer Battery 45 minutes before sunrise or ~2 hours before sunset
- Head to the bottom of Kirby Cove Hike Trail until you hit the beach. Make sure you get photos from all angles for such a diverse feel to the photos!
- Work your way back up the hill stopping at the cypress forest to take photos
- About halfway up the trail stop and take some with the rolling hills in the background! If you’re there in the evening on a sunny day, the sunlight will be seriously magical
- Lastly, I loveeee the vibrant red colors of the dirt in this area! You can wrap with some photos that show it off at nearly the top of the hill
PS- part of the reason I recommend starting at the bottom and working up is because first, it gets darker at the beach first. Second, it’ll be an uphill walk on your way back so you’ll appreciate stopping every so often to relax and take photos!
If you’re planning to take Golden Gate Bridge engagement photos, reach out and let’s do it!!!
Photos by Rachel Christopherson Photography, Northern California engagement photographer