Alaska Wedding Photographer – Epic Adventure Elopement

Alaska Wedding Photographer – The Epic Alaskan Elopement Adventure

I photograph many adventure elopements as a photographer. I have photographed weddings all over the world. My Mt. Everest elopement was the big one and it was much bigger than I expected in terms of it going globally viral. But even then, trying to scout epic locations around the world, having climbed north America’s highest peak, Mt. McKinley, leading teams up mountains, I keep returning back to Alaska. It is quite comparatively, as close to the Himalayas as one can get in terms of epic mountain ranges within the USA.

A little little secret, I teared up when I first saw the Denali mountain range back in 2007 as I was flying into the glacier to climb it. It’s that epic and there are even more epic locations in Alaska. I know many Alaskans are thinking, sshhhh, quiet, don’t brag about this place, we want to keep it small, wild, and quiet. However, most people will not move there for the fact that it’s pretty much always dark in the winter, something most people biologically and psychologically cannot handle.

That being said, I love Alaska and I know Alaska enjoys business. And if I can promote Alaska weddings and elopements in the mountain ranges, I’m only going to boost their economy.

alaskan glacier elopement

Chugach Mountain Wedding Adventure

Now on with Alex and Peter’s epic destination elopement in the Chugach mountain range. They did their research and it paid off. Peter and Alex booked me for the wedding plans and wanted something unique. Both were open to possibilities for adventurous photos together. Originally I had wanted us to capture photos in Denali National Park the day before their elopement. However, weather would not guarantee us a flight. Instead, we opted for a helicopter ride near their wedding location in Girdwood, Alaska where the mountains went on for days. The result was nothing short of awesome.

Our first day, we flew with Alpine Air Alaska into the Chugach mountains. Jon was our Pilot who directed us to choose a location and he would drop us off for photos. At this point, a ceremony location hadn’t yet been chosen, yes, the day before their ceremony. We took our time capturing alaskan beauties, but also to scout a wedding ceremony location for the following day.

Among the glaciers we traveled the first day, I believe we saw 12 bears and 14 moose. We hit the Knik Glacier, Lake George Glacier, Colony Glacier, Sparrow Glacier, Finch Glacier, and a few others. There were so many secluded places to land, but we captured what we needed. Alex had a few wedding dresses, one for the adventure day, and one for the elopement day. Both dresses required a jacket when we were not shooting, as it was cold.

The Elopement Ceremony

Our wedding couple wanted an Alaskan wedding ceremony location where family and friends could gather without any snow below their feet, and that’s what they got. The following day, Peter, Alex, their family, and friends were taken to a secluded location where we were told no elopement had been performed yet. Perfect weather and temperature for scenic photos. Check out the location.

Just so everyone knows when viewing these images, an adventure elopement isn’t always as great as the photos. Usually there’s some sort of inconvenience to endure or a test. Some on the helicopter flight were a little nervous about flying or didn’t want to fly. Some didn’t like the cold. During the ceremony, these little large gnat type mosquitos were everywhere landing on our faces, ears, etc. It rained after the ceremony. I had photo ideas for after the ceremony that wouldn’t work because of the rain.

However, everyone was so elated to see Peter and Alex married, everything else seemed to fade away. At the end of the day, we nailed even better images than we expected. Everyone else will forget the gnats and the cold weather. What remains are the memories captured by the photographer, and I’m so grateful to have been been a part of their alaskan adventure.

The reception and decor was beautifully setup with a view of the Chugach mountain range just outside of Alyeska Resort. Check out the images below and enjoy the images.

Note, all persons flying into Alaska had to be covid tested within 72 hours of flight before permission was granted to attend the wedding, just so you’re aware.

Returning to Alaska

Good news. I will be returning to Alaska next year July 14-20, 2021 if you are interested in an epic adventure photo shoot with me. Whether you are wanting a couples adventure session, elopement, wedding, engagement, or a married couple’s session, I am only booking 6 couples for these dates, one date per couple. If you prefer to book outside of these dates, no problem. Since I am combing this trip with others for that week, I am dropping my travel/lodging rates. July 14th is already taken.

Also, I will be assisting with the Helicopter arrangements and lodging, but if you want more in planning your wedding in Alaska, Madison from Wild Hearts Events will take care of everything for you.

If interested, Contact me here to book.

epic alaska mountain elopement
bride and groom warming hands
alaskan groom warming brides hands
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couple hiking in a wedding dress and tuxedo
couple dancing in the chugach state park
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girdwood alaskan wedding couple on an adventure photoshoot
berta bridal wedding dress seen in Alaska
SF Bridal Galleria wedding Berta dress in an elopement
Berta Bride in the mountains
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seward alaska wedding couple on a glacier
knik glacier eloping couple under mountain peak
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couple hiking on the glacier with blue water
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DAY 2 – Alaska Elopement Ceremony and Reception Adventure

groom getting ready at girdwood
gown hanging at the alyeksa resort
bride and bridesmaids at alyeksa hotel
girdwood ak
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first look of eloping couple in girdwood, alaska
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alpine air alaska bride before ceremony
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group photo after elopement
cheese and wine after eloping in the wild
cheese, meat, wine, and decor from wild hearts events
rain after ceremony
umbrellas for everyone in the mountains
umbrella shoot thru
rainy alaskan couples photos near seward
couple exchanging vows near girdwood
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viewing the chugach mountains
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reception wedding tent outside
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outside reception decor in girdwood
wedding table decor with red roses and blankets
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bride and groom toasting in girdwood ak.
first dance of the couple in outside reception
outdoor intimate wedding elopement in a secluded alaskan venue
raining during wedding couples dance at receptionalaska wedding dancing and dipping near alyeska resort

 

Photography: Charleton Churchill Photography
Wedding Dress: Berta Bridal & SF Bridal Galleria

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Jackson Hole Wedding Photographer | Grand Teton National Park

Jackson Hole Wedding Photographer at the Grand Teton National Park
Adventure Elopement and Wedding Photographer Charleton Churchill

It’s always anticipating to return to Jackson Hole, Wyoming to adventure with wedding couples amongst the Grand Teton National Park. Jackson Hole has much to offer for destination weddings and elopements that I receive requests to photograph there often. It has all the rugged mountain scenery, lakes, and trails anyone needs for epic mountain photos. The Tetons showcase that jagged peak look, which brings in that intimidating formidable look to my photos. I’m pleased to share some of Jeremie and Aysegul’s Teton elopement photography, my most adventure wedding. There’s much to share, but I’ll keep it short.

 

moose at wedding in grand teton national park

 

GETTING MARRIED IN JACKSON HOLE WYOMING

If you want get hitched, there are many popular Jackson Hole Wedding venues available in the area; more than I can list here. Diamond Cross Ranch, Jackson Hole Mountain Resort, Snow King Resort, Jackson Hole Golf and Tennis Club, Four Seasons Resort, and Jackson Museum of Wildlife Art are among them. If you want to elope in Jackson Hole, then you book an adventure elopement photographer who knows the area well. That’s where I enter.

I guide my wedding couples to scenic locations, popular or unique, like here on this Grand Teton Couples Adventure. Hiking with my couples, short distances or longer, is usually part of the day. Sometimes, we just pull over if the light is good or there’s eye candy. Some of my objectives are looking for the best light, while having a little fun and relaxing through the day. I want to keep everything as natural as possible, allowing for candids and moments to happen. Sometimes, wildlife will appear like it did on this trip.

SUNRISE WITH THE MOOSE

For Jeremie and Aysegul’s wedding adventure, we started at sunrise, which was cold. We sat in our cars with the heaters on until there was enough light to shoot. The clear sky was starting to appear, so we got out of the vehicles to make our way. A Moose was drinking from the river. I was like quietly yelling, “Hurry up, take your jacket off, and let’s get down here! There’s a moose! Hurry!”

We didn’t want to get close. We kept our distance. My couple removed their warm jackets and I captured a few images in the short time we had before the moose took off. It was incredible. The light was perfect and I couldn’t have asked for a better beginning to our photo session. We captured images with the Teton’s in the background, images at iconic locations, and then we hiked to a waterfall and saw a bear.

THE WEDDING BEAR ENCOUNTER

We had planned to get some photos at a specific waterfall. As we arrived, we saw quite a few people at a viewing location further away from the falls. I took my couple passed all the tourists and we got up real close to the falls. As I am giving some direction to my couple, my bride, Aysegul says emphatically, “Oh my Gosh, there’s a bear!”

My back was to the bear, so when she dramatically pronounced it, my first instinct was that a grizzly bear was behind me. Now keep in mind, I see many bears in Yosemite, Tahoe, and other National and State Parks, and they always walk away from me, keeping their distance. I turned around and this bear is walking towards us without fear. I quickly noticed it was a black bear, but this time it wasn’t walking away, but towards our direction.

So my adrenaline started up and I went full ape on the bear, yelling at the bear, clapping my hands making loud noises, chest out, and standing my ground. I’m selling my confidence to the bear remaining in charge, trying to be protective of our area and my couple. He starts walking below me on the rocks and he turns his head and stares at me; I stop walking towards him, still yelling loud. I didn’t want to advance the bear to create any threat.

My backpack with gear and food was off to the right, where he started to make his way. I was thinking I needed to protect my gear also. I know this because when I was in high school youth group on a hiking trip in the wilderness, a bear literally took one of our backpacks and dragged it away, teeth marks through a camera. So I knew my bag of goods might be in danger.

So, I continue to yell at the bear, clapping my hands loud, maneuvering  around the boulders towards my backpack. He turns around again and stops, staring at me. I stop in my tracks still yelling at him confidently, clapping my hands loud. I think I was yelling “Hey Bear, get out of hear!” There were boulders everywhere and I was above him, keeping my distance. He walks right past my bag and keeps walking. I continue to keep clapping and yelling until he’s far enough away.

My adrenaline is amped. As I turn around, my couple is up there in a protected area, a little shook up, but glad the bear is gone. We start laughing and talking about the experience. The tourists had been watching from a distance the whole time. One person came running up and asked where the bear went. I pointed, but said something like you should probably stay away.  We headed back and some of the tourists were asking questions. One person sent us an image showing a far away image with their IPhone. I may post it later.

SUNSET IN THE TETONS

After that event, we took a break midday, got some food, and relaxed before the sunset hike. We headed out for our last photos of the day and captured some beautiful sunset images at multiple locations. That day we saw a fox, elk, bear, moose, and other critters. We ended the day with a beautiful sunset sky and a starry night image.

Enjoy the images.

wedding couple with moose in the tetons national park
epic wildlife moose photo during wedding elopement in jackson hole wyoming
jackson hole elopement wedding photos
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little teton
sunrise adventure photo session jackson wy
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mormon barn in teton park
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wedding couple in the jackson hole fall
eloping couple hiking the tetons to the falls in jackson, wyoming
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wedding couple hiking the teton national park
teton park waterfalls with a wedding couple
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waterfalls b&w photos with couple
wedding couple hiking in boots and backpack in the fall at the teton national park
bride and boots in wedding dress hiking a trail in the grand tetons national park
couples can hike to any of the lakes in their wedding attire
after hiking a trail in the tetons, wedding couple takes a break
epic landscape wedding photos in the jackson hole area of wyoming
groom assisting bride over the waters at a teton lake
jackson hole candid wedding photos
wedding couple in the wilderness of jackson hole
jackson hole trails and a just married couple
jackson hole bride in the mountains after married
jackson hole groom
the grand tetons national park wedding photographer in the field during sunset
creative blurry wedding image
rocky mountain bride and groom in the tetons national park of jackson hole
fun couples images in the tetons
adventure session in the tetons
adventure elopement in the grand teton park
sunset photo session of jackson elopement wyoming
teton landscapes
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blurry and creative bride and groom images in b&w
married in jackson hole wyoming with a tuxedo and wedding dress in the wilderness
married in the teton national park
car window wedding photos
wedding photo with couple through car window of the tetons
wedding ring
jackson hole sunset wedding photography behind the yellowstone national park destinations
starry night wedding photo in the grand tetons

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Named Among the Top 100 Wedding Photographers in the United States and Canada

Rangefinder RF magazine featuring Charleton Churchill
martha stewart weddings top photographer charleton churchill

WEDDINGS | ADVENTURE ELOPEMENTS | BASED NEAR LAKE TAHOE & YOSEMITE

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