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A red dirt girl from Oklahoma turned mountain woman, with a camera in tow.

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  Kayla

9/25/2020

Yesenia & Brian | Hiking to a Sunset Elopement | Lander, Wyoming

This had to be one of the most fun, spontaneous elopements I’ve ever been a part of! 

The adventure started by meeting up with the little group in Lander, Wyoming and driving out to their location. Once we arrived, the couple’s close friends began to join us, so they could witness this special moment. 

But, that’s when a curve was thrown our way – Brian realized he had forgotten an essential piece to the ceremony and had to very quickly run back into town to get it. The speed got him in a little trouble as he was stopped by the sheriff for going too fast. Brian explained that his rush was due to having to get to his own wedding, and he had forgotten something, so he was rushing even more. The officer happily sent him on his way with the warning that he better make sure he arrived on time! Right from the get go, this elopement started off with tons of laughter (well, maybe not for Brian at first, but it’ll be a great memory for years to come.) 

Hiking to the Ceremony

It of course was a crazy hot and windy day in Wyoming – so windy that Yesenia and Brian decided to not try to set anything up, as it seemed hopeless in the vigorous wind gusts. But no celebration is complete without some drinks, so their friends made sure to still hiked in all the supplies! 

We started off with a short, 30 minute hike, which was the perfect moment to get to know everyone. I heard about how they had all met in college, and how Yesenia and Brain were actually roommates before they started dating (que in the cutest sit-com right!?!) 

As the party chatted about their college days and where life had taken them after, I learned that all the pieces of this group had come back together from across separate states to hike and celebrate the love of two of their best friends. They even made sure that the only friend who couldn’t make it (currently residing in Prague) was included by planning on setting up a virtual window into the ceremony once it started. This is the type of friendship that comes once in a lifetime, and my heart was so touched.  

Eloping in the Wyoming Hills

The hike went quick and before we knew it, we arrived at a beautiful spot that had a breathtaking scenic view. Everyone changed into their outfits, and we made sure to scout the best spot to ensure the photos had a view without compromising solid footing for the group. 

Yesenia and Brian Pose at Top of Hills in Lander, Wyoming

Luck have it, there was just enough cell service to get ahold of their friend overseas! We tried to video chat but were only able to have a voice call, so Brian tucked the cell phone in behind his pocket square and the ceremony started. 

It was a non-traditional ceremony full of laughter, personalized vows, and a few happy tears. There is nothing more intimate than a couple reading their vows to each other, and it will forever be my favorite part of each ceremony. This is the part where personalities really come out, and the love grown between two people is witnessed by each guest. 

The ring exchanging, the first kiss, and endless cheers finished out their ceremony. Brian helped to make drinks (a tradition for their group over the years since he was a bartender in college)  and celebration of the couple ensued. 

As I left their happy little party, I could hear their laughter caring over the hills, and it hit my heart more than any other elopement. No matter what life brings you, love and celebration is always with us and we must embrace, remember, and cherish those moments. 

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