Windswept Day-After Session at Rocky Mountain National Park

Carlee and Jon had an incredibly beautiful wedding at the Stanley Hotel in Estes Park on a chilly Friday in September. The next day we met them in town for some drinks and then headed out to the top of Rocky Mountain National Park for a day-after session. That day was some of the most insane wind I have ever experienced—almost as strong as the infamous wind we experienced in Patagonia. It was absolutely wild. Carlee & Jon embraced the adventure and we hiked around the windswept rock outcroppings as the sunset danced below the clouds.

I LIVE for things like this. Dirty dress bottoms and wind-blown hair, hiking boots and holding tight against the cold. Sessions like this one are so much fun to me, when the adventure is evident and the landscape isn’t just part of a pretty background, but it takes over every part of the experience. Sure we would have made great photos if the weather was nice, but the wild smiles and wind in the dress make me freaking feel it.

We love these two. I have a feeling their marriage will be just as adventurous as this windy day on top of a mountain.

Location: Rocky Mountain National Park
Dress: BHLDN
Boots: Kodiak

As a side note, I feel it’s appropriate to mention the fragile landscape that is Rocky Mountain National Park! Once you are above treeline, the plants and soil of the tundra are incredibly sensitive. When you’re in a landscape like the one at Rocky Mountain, you should take extra caution to stay on the trail and on durable rock surfaces (like we did!). The tiny plants that grow up there barely survive the harsh conditions with little oxygen, intense thunderstorms, and violent wind, and can often take up to 10 years to recover from a single boot print. It is all-too common to see people walking on the tundra, and this strictly violates Leave No Trace principles. While RMNP is doing it’s best to regulate this with signs and listed rules, there is simply not enough oversight to protect the fragile landscape against erosion.

More q’s? Here’s some info about Leave No Trace for photographers.

And here’s where you can donate to the park!

Cedar & Pines is an adventurous wedding and elopement photographer duo made up of Nate and Megan Kantor, a married couple living in their Airstream and traveling the American West. They believe in honest wedding photography, capturing the small candid moments to the epic landscape views. They travel to photograph intimate weddings and adventure elopements from the mountains of Colorado to destination weddings in California, Utah, New Mexico, Arizona, Wyoming, Washington, Patagonia and the ends of the earth.