When I first connected with Amber and Kyle for their intimate destination elopement in Rocky Mountain National Park, I was so excited to tell their love story in our beautiful state. Little did we know that their wedding day would unfold in a way none of us ever imagined!
Amber and Kyle met almost two decades ago in junior high in their home state of Illinois, but didn't connect until high school. They shared a first date most than ten years ago in Chicago. They both shared a quiet grace and similar love for spending time together.
For their 10th anniversary, they planned an epic return trip to Costa Rica. Kyle had a ring with him and had grand plans of proposing to Amber at the top of a volcano during their trip, but on their way they were diverted due to an eruption and volcanic ash dangers. All flights in and out of the country were cancelled for a week, so they made a last-minute decision to vacation in New York City.
As the week went on, Kyle scrambled to find the right moment to propose. After a perfect day together of sightseeing and dive-bar-jukebox-song-playing, they came home to the apartment they were staying in. Kyle surprised Amber with a beautiful ring and asked her to be his forever. It took her by complete surprise and the two of them went out again that night to celebrate.
Their dream wedding included just the two of them, an officiant, and a photographer to capture their special day. They chose Colorado for obvious reasons: mountains, epic vistas, and beautiful blue skies. For six months, we planned out the details and they chose Sprague Lake as the backdrop for their vows. They planned a two-week trip around their wedding, with the first week being in Estes Park.
As the day got closer, we were anxious about an incoming winter storm warning for most of the high country. As in true Colorado fashion, the forecasts can be so wrong so we didn't sweat too much! However, their wedding day arrived with drizzle and overcast skies.
We decided to move up their timeline and explore around RMNP for portraits before their ceremony, as the storm was forecasted to worsen as the day went on. Amber and Kyle got ready in the cute little cabin they stayed at (The Landing), and soon we headed into the Park with hopes for a clearing in the storm.
Fortunately, the temperatures dropped and we were surrounded by a beautiful snow fall instead of drizzle rain. While we didn't have the views we'd hoped for, we were blessed with something else. Someone else.
After a while of photos around the Park, we headed to Sprague Lake to get them married! We met their fabulous officiant, Jane, and soon were standing along the shore of the lake with heavy snowflakes coming down in droves. Amber and Kyle shared vows, exchanged rings, and had their first kiss in a swirling winter wonderland.
We finished a few portraits in that location and decided to make our way back to the cars to warm up. As we walked around the lake, we spotted a moose on the opposite shore walking in the water directly towards us! By the time we arrived to the top end of the lake inlet, the female moose had also arrived. She kept an eye on us, while we watched to see where she wanted to go. As soon as we backed off, she came up out of the water and on to the trail directly behind Amber and Kyle! I told them to stand in the middle of the trail and kiss, but they were so excited (and maybe terrified) about our moose witness they held on to each other and watched as the moose moseyed across the trail into the trees. It was a moment we will never forget!
After our adrenaline settled back down, Amber and Kyle signed their marriage license and were on their way to change into dry clothes and enjoy a celebratory dinner at the Stanley Hotel. It was a day filled with joy, giggles, and so much love!
The next day, our teaser photos went viral! Their story was picked up by the Boulder Daily Camera, and shortly afterwards I was receiving nonstop calls and emails from various news outlets looking to share the story as well! I drove to Denver to interview with CBS 4 and FOX 31 which aired the story later that day.
If you missed the full story, catch up here:
The couple's biggest wedding advice: "Don't be afraid to elope! We're so happy with our decision."
Vendor dream team:
Bride's Dress: David's Bridal