Lola and Jason | Blue Lakes Elopement | Ridgway Colorado
Savannah Chandler Photography | Colorado Hiking Elopement Photographer
When I hiked Mount Sneffels in 2020 – my entire goal of reaching the summit was to be able to overlook the 3 blue lakes that sit in the basin below. Ever since then, I’ve wanted to hike up to the teal colored waters of the Blue Lakes.
Sitting near Ridgway, Colorado – the Blue Lakes trail takes you to three separate lakes. The lower, middle and upper – topping out at nearly 11,800 feet. The hike it’s self is very pleasant with many rolling hills to reach the lower lake followed by a few pushes of steeper elevation gain to reach the secondary two lakes.
Jason and Lola had decided to elope at the third lake, overlooking the middle lake, at sunrise on a Thursday morning. Knowing we’d have to start hiking incredibly early, my secondary photographer Natalie and I decided to backpack into the lower lake the night before and meet up there to all hike up together to the third lake. Carrying a pack with not only backpacking gear, but camera equipment made for quite the exercise!
At 3:30 am, we met up with Lola, Jason, and their 3 human and 2 doggo wedding attendants to head up and up to overlook Dallas peak. The hike it’s self was great – and we arrived at the lake roughly an hour before the sun began to come up. As I often say, I would rather overshoot our hike time and arrive early than to underestimate and miss alpenglow!
The light began to scatter across the bright green valley, right under the Southwest Ridge of 14,157′ Mount Sneffels at 5:40am.
With Dallas Peak in full Alpenglow, Lola and Jason had the most beautiful alpine ceremony. I love listening while I photograph during ceremonies – we learned that they had been together TEN years and through many fun, difficult, and loving times together.
After celebratory hugs, beer cheers, and dog hugs – we began our trek to the lower lake overlook.
As we reached the overlook, the mountains were an amazing shade of pink with flowers galore over the teal waters of the Lower Lake. We spent some time scaling some of the rock sides for photographs, then “arts and crafts” time commenced to make Lola and Jason’s Finally Married signs. I think taking the time to personalize your elopement day with things like smashed beer can Elopement signs is hands down one of my favorite things about spending time with couples in the mountains. Making the intentional decision to commit yourselves in a way that makes your souls soar is truly what adventure elopements are all about. <3
Back down at the sun-filled waters of the lower lake, Lola asked if they should get into the lake. The answer to that question (as long as it’s not a protected lake that has regulations against humans in the water) is always HELL YES!!
They made their way into the freezing alpine lake (which I later got in myself and can attest to the freezing temperatures of) right as the sun crested over the mountainside.
Thanks again for adventuring with me, Lola and Jason! I can’t wait to see more of your adventures together.