Are you planning a short-notice, small wedding or elopement?

WEDDING PHOTOGRAPHY STUDIOS ARE OPEN - Many couples don’t want to wait. They are planning to get married in the very near future, eloping, or rushing a small ceremony with their photographer, some close friends, and family but dispensing with or postponing the reception party. 

View WPJA photo stories from smaller weddings - WedElope | Choose love, not fear!

Twin Lakes, Vail, Colorado Elopement Photo Story Award

Vail, Colorado Wedding Portrait the couple in the night snow on their walk back to their hotel

Vail, Colorado Wedding Photographers | the couple on their walk back to their hotel

On the walk back to their hotel, a row of evergreens caught my attention and we paused for a quick photo of them. Their breath caught the light in the cold night air.

Lucy and Rick planned their elopement day on their ten year anniversary of being together, on the shore of Twin Lakes in central Colorado. Their anniversary made it extra special as throughout the day they shared memories of their previous 10 celebrations. Having always dreamed of a winter wedding, the below-freezing temperatures didn't phase them one bit. They stayed warm by cuddling up together. A welcome blizzard struck the night before and coated the scenery in a blanket of snow and whipped the snow around them.

They shared a first look at the lake before hiking through the snow until they found a spot that felt just right to say their promises to one another. Zelda, their dog of honor, raced circles around them in the deep snow, having the time of her life and developing an icicle beard on her chin.

From the moment the sun came up on their day, Rick and Lucy set out to have as much fun and pack as many laughs into their elopement day as possible. They sprayed champagne after having cheese and crackers set out on the hood of their car. When it came time to sign the marriage license, which also took place on the front of the car, they laughed about where to sign in their self-solemnizing marriage.

They traveled back to their hotel in Vail as it got dark, and the cold mountain air caught their breath as snow continued to fall. They cut a huge slice of cake back in their room and ate it face-first to cap off the day. It was everything they wanted it to be! 

Twin Lakes Wedding Photo image from Colorado of the couple Hiking to the ceremony site on packed snow

Twin Lakes Wedding Photography - Colorado | Hiking to the ceremony site on packed snow

Hiking to the ceremony site on packed snow, the couple pauses for a moment as Zelda the dog of honor races by them at full speed.

Twin Lakes Colorado Wedding Photo of The bride and groom cracking up laughing as they exchange rings

Twin Lakes Colorado Wedding Photographer | The bride and groom crack up laughing as they exchange rings

Lucy and Rick crack up laughing as they exchange rings in their private winter elopement ceremony.

Winter Wedding Picture from Twin Lakes showing The dog of honor running around the ceremony

Winter Wedding Pictures from Twin Lakes, Colorado | The dog of honor, ran circles around the ceremony

Zelda, the dog of honor, ran circles around the ceremony, having the time of her life! This moment right after their first kiss as husband and wife shows her prancing through the snow in the foreground.

The location of their ceremony was chosen for its mountain and lake views. Temperatures topped out at 18 degrees that day, and we were lucky that the huge, 14,000' mountains were visible as most of Colorado had whiteout conditions that day.

Twin Lakes Wedding Photo from Colorado showing The snow blizzard raging around them

Twin Lakes Wedding Photographers, Colorado | The blizzard raged around them

The blizzard raged around them and Rick leaned over to hold his wife close as the wind picked up.

Twin Lakes, Colorado Winter Wedding picture showing The scrub on the shores providing texture and color to their winter snow globe elopement

Twin Lakes, Colorado Winter Wedding Images | The scrub on the shores provided texture and color to their wintery snowglobe elopement

As long as Lucy could remember, she had wanted a winter wonderland wedding, so Colorado was the perfect location. The scrub on the shores of Twin lakes provided texture and color to their wintery snowglobe elopement.

Winter Wedding image at Twin Lakes, Colorado from the hood of their car of the marriage license signing

Winter Wedding Pics from Twin Lakes, Colorado | the hood of their car, laid out with a picnic napkin and "adult lunchables"

Lucy bends over the hood of their car, laid out with a picnic napkin and "adult lunchables", to sign their marriage license as Rick looks on. Rick is looking at the instructions from the courthouse, and he's skeptical of Lucy signing in the wrong place.

Twin Lakes Colorado Wedding image showing the champagne to celebrate their marriage

Twin Lakes Colorado Wedding Photos | some champagne to celebrate their marriage

Lucy and Rick pop some champagne to celebrate their marriage on their ten-year anniversary of togetherness. Rick got absolutely covered in bubbles as Lucy shields her face and hair from the spray.

The Arrabelle, Vail Square Wedding Photo from the hotel room of the cake cutting

The Arrabelle, Vail Square Wedding Photography | in their hotel room for the night at The Arrabelle at Vail Square

Back in their hotel room for the night at The Arrabelle at Vail Square, they dug into their wedding cake face-first.