Jan & Jo spent their Washington State elopement day running through blooming fields of wildflowers, trekking the Hanford Reach in a windstorm, and taking in sweet, intimate moments together. I had the pleasure of photographing this special elopement in central Washington State. Half of the day I felt like I was in Pride and Prejudice and the other part I felt like I was in the Sound of Music.
It was one of those elopements that I will remember for years to come and they will treasure for the rest of their lives.
When you think of a Washington State elopement Olympic National Park or Mount Rainier are the first locations to come to mind. However, Jan & Jo’s Central Washington State elopement showcased a whole other side of the state.
We traversed, romped and danced through a ruggedly beautiful region of gorgeous sand dunes, panoramic views of the Columbia river, and endless wildflower fields.
Jan & Jo got ready at their charming Airbnb right next to Cave B Winery. Their rustic modern cabin was filled with windows that offered stunning views from the canyon’s edge of the Columbia River snaking away in the distance. Jo sat, buzzing with nerves, as Kendra Springer did her makeup and hair. As the sun rose, Jan took their dog, Moshi, out for walks in the winery fields – the vineyard glowing with buttery sunrise light.
They got ready together and Jan delicately helped Jo tie the back of her dress before the first look in the vineyard. Step by careful step, Jan approached Jo from behind. When he tapped her shoulder and they saw each other for the very first time in their wedding finest, it was an intimate and emotional moment. Their reaction to seeing each other was so priceless and I was honored to witness it as their photographer.
We then walked over to the edge of the cliff at Cave B Winery where Jan and Jo looked at each other like it was their first time meeting. You know that scene in Pride and Prejudice when Jane is on the edge of the cliff with her dress flowing in the wind? I could practically hear the song “Liz on Top of the World” playing from unseen speakers in the sky. It was one of those stunning moments that reminded me why I first picked up the camera. I was so grateful we got this interaction on video as well.
After we took some photos around the winery we drove up a bumpy road to Burch Mountain. For about 20 minutes we navigated dips and rocks, passing wildflower fields along the way. The bumps and jolts just made it more of an adventure.
Once we summited Burch Mountain we set up for the ceremony. The ceremony space overlooked Dragontail peak mountains. I really felt like we were transported to the Swiss Alps. It was so peaceful at the top of the mountain. Birds chirped in the distance and the wind rustled Jo’s dress.
Jo & Jan stood at the top of the mountain and said their vows to one another, as Moshi leapt up in agreement. Jo & Jan’s love for one another was so real and palpable. I got chills throughout the entire ceremony. We then explored a little bit more of Burch Mountain and meandered slowly down the hillside.
We stopped at a gorgeous wildflower field where Jan & Jo frolicked in the field holding hands. Once again, I felt like I was witnessing a movie scene, this time The Sound of Music. As we journeyed down the mountain, in the distance we saw around 20 long horn sheep staring directly at us. We climbed up a ledge to get a better glimpse of them.
After Burch Mountain we made our way over to the Hanford Reach. It has a stark beauty filled with sage brush and rolling sand dunes, striking white bluffs, open skies, endless landscapes, and the free-flowing Columbia River rivers. We made our journey towards the sand dunes, however it was getting extremely windy. Jan & Jo decided to have their picnic in the fields at a section that overlooked the river. They read letters to one another and watched the clouds darken as the sun set. As the wind picked up again we decided it was best to start heading to the car.
Jan & Jo then shared their first dance in front of the car in the dark. Headlights illuminating them, their steps in sync, it made for a special ending to such an adventurous day. I was so grateful to capture this gorgeous Central Washington State Elopement.
Dress – Brides for a Cause
Bridal Tailoring – Andra Bose
Suit – Bar III
Venue – Cave B Winery
Hair & Makeup – Kendra Springer
Officiant – Uniquely I Do
Florist – Bumble Bea’s Garden
Charcuterie – noshgrazing
Cake – Hood Famous Bakeshop
Rings – Green Lake Jewelry