From my first time chatting with Karie and Jared, I knew documenting their Buena Vista elopement day would be a true adventure. These two are some of the most energetic, kind-hearted, and free-spirited souls I’ve had the honor of meeting.
It felt like half of our time during their elopement was spent adventuring and the other half was spent having the best conversations as we hiked and wandered through the mountains outside Buena Vista.
When we first arrived at the trailhead parking lot, an wild fog was hovering over the mountains. There were intense, moody skies in one direction, as the sun was shining in the other. Classic Colorado, throwing literally every weather scenario out all at once.
We wandered up the hiking trail, to adventure on an overlook just down the path from where Karie and Jared were going to share their vows. Karie’s Chantel Lauren wedding dress, with its insanely gorgeous and flowy skirt (y’all the blue skirt of her dress was HAND PAINTED!), was basically asking to play around in the wind. So naturally we had to show it off. And y’all, let me tell you, Karie was an absolute show-stopper in her gown. Literally the most perfect dress for a mountain elopement.
After hanging out at the overlook, we made our way down to Karie and Jared’s Buena Vista elopement ceremony spot. Since they eloped in Colorado, where self-uniting marriage is legal, K+J married themselves, without an officiant and any other witnesses present.
Quite possibly my favorite part of their ceremony was right after they pronounced themselves married and they both screamed up into the sky in celebration. Not only was it super cute, but you could just see the joy in their faces the entire time. Such an awesome way to wrap up their Buena Vista elopement ceremony.
After their Buena Vista elopement ceremony, we wandered to a few of my favorite spots on the trail, where these two took in the gorgeous mountain views and soaked in their first few moments as a married couple.
After a bit of hiking, we made our way back to the trailhead parking lot, where Karie and Jared signed their marriage license on the hood of their car.
Fun random fact about their day: Karie decided that since she was going to be a wearing a colorful dress for her elopement that she’d also dye the ends of her hair her favorite color purple. Pretty sure these two couldn’t be more fun.
As the sunset started to approach, we hopped back on the trail and over to a little lake, where Karie and Jared popped a celebratory bottle of champagne, shared their first dance together as a newly eloped couple, and drank hot cocoa on a picnic blanket with the mountains surrounding them.
We wrapped up Karie and Jared’s Buena Vista elopement day and made our way to the mountain pass, where we had some roadside adventures as the most insanely beautiful and colorful sunset painted its way across the mountains and sky.
And once the sky had cooled off, we swung by my favorite overlook spot in the area, where we watched the last bits of alpenglow kissing the tips of the mountains and awaited the transition from golden hour to blue hour.
P.S. As an adventure elopement and adventure wedding photographer, I believe in being more than just a documenter of your elopement day. I pride myself on helping you navigate all the little details as well — like helping you figure out the perfect time of year for your Buena Vista elopement.
As someone who also eloped, I’ve been in your shoes. I know what you’re doing through, and I’m here to help.
Check out some of our favorite elopement and adventure wedding planning resources:
Not everyone loves tradition, but that doesn’t make your adventure wedding or elopement any less important.
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