Wedding and Portrait Photography CUA


Wedding and Portrait Photography CUAs allow wedding and portrait photography within Yellowstone National Park. This type of photography includes, but is not limited to, the following: Engagement Photography, Wedding Photography, Family Portraits, School/Graduation Portraits, and Pet Portraits (must abide by park pet policy in thermal areas). Appropriate wedding permits (Weddings and Other Ceremonies) are required when photographing wedding ceremonies.

There are two options available for offering Wedding and Portrait Photography in Yellowstone: a single-session permit and annual CUA.


Single-Session Wedding and Portrait Photography CUA (SSWPP)

A Single Session Wedding and Portrait Photography Commercial Use Authorization (CUA) is a 1-day CUA issued to cover a single photo session within Yellowstone National Park. Each permit is $100. If you have obtained 3 or more permits (totaling $300 in application fees), you will be converted to an annual CUA for Wedding & Portrait Photography for the remainder of the calendar year Please note that there are additional reporting and management fees once you are converted to an annual CUA.

To obtain a Single-Session Wedding and Portrait Photography CUA, please complete the following steps:

  1. Complete the Single-Session Wedding and Photography CUA Application.
  2. Read and agree to the conditions of this authorization, Yellowstone special park conditions, and operatingplan by signing Attachment A.
  3. Submit payment for the $100 application fee payment at:
  4. On section 2 of the payment process, please select the option for Single-Session Portrait and Wedding Photography—$100 Application Fee Per Session.
  5. Email the application, signed Attachment A, and application fee payment receipt to: Our office will send you a finalized CUA form to present to the entrance stationand carry with you while operating in the park.

If you have any questions or need assistance with your application, please contact the Concessions Management Office at or 307-344-2320.


Annual Wedding and Portrait Photography CUA (WPP)

This CUA allows the holder to conduct services for portrait and wedding photography. This type of photography includes, but is not limited to, the following:

  • Wedding Ceremony Photography
  • Engagement Photography
  • Family Portraits and Photography
  • School/Graduation Portraits
  • Pet Portraits (must abide by park pet policy)
  1. This CUA is required for photography of a wedding ceremony. If the wedding is taking place in the park, then awedding permit must also be obtained by contacting the park’s Special Use Permit Office. Information onobtaining a wedding permit can be found at Weddings and Other Ceremonies.
  2. Photography of a wedding ceremony is limited to the location and number of guests listed on the wedding permit.
  3. Wedding photographs may be taken at locations other than that listed on the wedding permit but are required tofollow the location and group size limits described in this document.
  4. Portrait and wedding photography in public, non-congested areas not listed under number 5 of this operating plan is limited to a maximum of 15 people, including photographers (or any other portrait subjects such as pets),unless otherwise stated on a special use permit.
  5. Group size for all portrait and wedding photography is limited to 5 people, including the photographer, in areas ofthe Yellowstone Canyon between Silver Cord Cascade and Inspiration Point and between Chittenden Bridge and Upper Falls and in any thermal area park-wide; travel in these areas is restricted to NPS designated trails and boardwalks.
  6. Photography is prohibited in thermal areas and the aforementioned areas of the Yellowstone Canyon between the hours of 9 a.m. and 7 p.m., from May 15th to September 30th, to reduce visitor use conflicts in these congested areas.
  7. Photography is permitted in front country areas open to the public, on boardwalk areas, and on hiking trails within½ mile of the road. Photography is prohibited at Boiling River.
  8. Visitors may not be asked to move and areas may not be closed to accommodate photographs.
  9. Groups must utilize areas in a way that allows for the free flow of other traffic on roads, boardwalks, and trails.Clients participating in photography sessions must not conflict with the public’s normal use of park areas.
  10. All individuals are required to comply as directed by NPS staff engaged in administering wildlife management operations or managing wildlife viewing opportunities.
  11. Equipment will be carried at all times, except for the use of tripods used to hold cameras. Photography taken atindoor areas that have been reserved in advance may accommodate additional equipment with prior approval from the Business and Commercial Services Office.
  12. Filming is not authorized under this CUA. Filming and the use of models or props may require a commercial filmpermit. For Commercial Film Permit inquiries, please contact the Film Office at (307) 344-2722 or (307) 344-2115.
  13. If you have any questions regarding your authorization, please contact the Concessions Management Office at 307-344-2320.

How to apply for this CUA activity

  1. Complete CUA application packets should be submitted via email to
  2. Complete application packets include the documents listed below (click on the blue links below to download each document):
  3. If your application is missing any components listed above, we will inform you via the email address or phone number listed on the application. Any incomplete applications will be placed on hold until all required documentation is received.
  4. Once your application packet has been reviewed and approved, we will send the CUA, NPS Form 10-115, via the email address listed on the application.
  5. The CUA holder will then sign and return the CUA form(s) to The CUA is not final until the signed form(s) are received by our office.
  6. Submit a guide card request for any guides/employees that will be entering the park under this CUA at least two weeks prior to their first trip in the park.
  7. Complete and submit Annual Report Forms—Due by January 31st following the operating year.

Photography shoots using models, props, or filming do not qualify for a wedding or portrait photography CUA but may require a film permit. For more information on film permits, please visit Film, Photography, and Sound Recording Permits.

If you have any questions, please e-mail


Last updated: March 1, 2022

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