Danielle + Andrew’s Stormy RMNP Elopement

August 27, 2019

When I was driving up from Boulder to Estes Park for Danielle and Andrew’s elopement, I could see the dark clouds hovering over the mountains. By the time I was driving into Rocky Mountain National Park, it had started raining heavily, as it often does on summer afternoons in the Rockies. 

But when I pulled up to 3M Curve where I was meeting the couple and their families, the rain completely stopped. There were still heavy clouds hanging low over the mountains, and we couldn’t even see Longs Peak through the clouds, but we decided to go for it. 

As Danielle walked down the trail to the ceremony with her son, we heard thunder booming in the distance. And during the ceremony, we saw lightning all around Longs Peak. (You can even see a tiny glimpse of a lightning strike in one of the photos!) But by some magical powers, the rain held off, and Danielle and Andrew got married under one of the most epically dark skies I’ve ever seen in Colorado.

After the ceremony, their parents headed back into Estes Park for a drink at The Stanley, while the three of us drove up Trail Ridge Road where we were doing their portraits. We started hiking down one of my favorite trails, but within fifteen minutes it started hailing on us! And yes – that’s a thing that can happen in Colorado even at the beginning of August!

We ran back to my car, and drove down to another of my favorite spots while waiting out the rain. The thunder storm moved in super fast, and within minutes we were in the middle of it. If you’ve never been caught in the middle of a storm like that, let me tell you we were all damn glad to be sitting inside of my Subie and not stuck outside in the hail! 

But as it usually does, the storm passed within fifteen minutes, and we were able to get back outside again. We started hiking down one trail, but suddenly caught a glimpse of a rainbow popping out of the sky behind us, and so we ran over to get some photos with it. Danielle and Andrew were jumping from rock to rock to get over to the right spot (because let’s not walk on the tundra, y’all), and the cars passing by were rolling down their windows to yell CONGRATULATIONS at them. 

This whole day was seriously such a perfect representation of how crazy Colorado weather can be – both good and bad. And when couples ask me how to handle bad weather on their wedding days from now on, I’m gonna show them the photos of Danielle and Andrew under this rainbow and tell them it’ll all work out 😉 

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