Colorado Packraft Elopement | Sierra + Merina

Posted On | July 14, 2022

bird's eye view looking straight down on wedding couple paddling in packraft wound ans island in an alpine lake during packraft elopement in colorado

Sierra and Merina’s Colorado packraft elopement will forever be a day (turned days) that I remember. There are no words to describe how lucky I was to spend not just one day, but an extra unplanned sunrise with these two.
I swear, Sierra and Merina are two people who I would be real-life friends with in a heartbeat if they didn’t live all the way in Utah. They are kind, they are adventurous, they are goofy, and they are just down to earth.
The morning of their Colorado backpacking elopement day the sun shined through the windows as they cooked pancakes and got ready together.
We spent some time around an alpine lake writing out their vows and then started hiking to meet their family at the location for their ceremony. There was a threat of rain in the air and it started to sprinkle as these two shared their vows. Mid-ceremony, it started raining so hard, that we all took shelter and decided to wait it out.
Unfortunately, that stubborn cloud just sat over us with no end to the rain in sight. We made the decision to hike back down and meet up for sunrise to return to the same spot.
Gosh dang, these two made the best of it and that surprise sunrise was well worth the cold and the cancellations the day before.
Sierra and Merina got to soak in the views (sans rain). They blew up a packraft from Backcountry Packraft Rentals and paddled to the middle of the island in the lake where they shared their first dance (and I screamed at the top of my lungs because it was a photographer’s dream to photograph these two).
Sierra and Merina, thank you for trusting me with your love. With your pup. With your day. And thank you for getting up before dawn even though I know you aren’t morning people. Your Colorado packraft elopement is one I will never forget.

Larissa was absolutely amazing! We found We, The Light through a google search, searching Colorado elopement photographers and they popped up. We were especially drawn to them because they are so LGBTQIA+ friendly and their website made us feel like we would be welcome and treated just like any other couple. We also really loved their prices, as their photo quality looked amazing and yet was much more affordable than other comparable choices! We hopped on a call with Larissa and immediately felt welcomed and comfortable! During the planning process, she was great with all the questions we had and always provided helpful suggestions and tips! Our elopement day didn’t go exactly as planned as a surprise rainstorm came through during our ceremony at Lost Lake and we had to stop in the middle of the ceremony! We tried to wait it out but it didn’t stop (very unusual for Colorado)! Larissa was great with this unexpected situation, taking it all in stride and staying upbeat. She offered to end early that day (as we were planning to stay at the lake, just the three of us, to paddle out onto the lake and get portraits) and instead go back up at sunrise, which was not in the agreed plan, but she was up for it anyways! We did go back up at sunrise, which was absolutely amazing and beautiful. My wife and I aren’t super comfortable in front of a camera, but she gave us prompts to talk to each other that really helped us relax and get some amazing pictures! We blew up the pack raft and paddled out on to the lake. Larissa had borrowed a drone and got some amazing shots of us despite never having used one for an elopement before! We hiked down to end our coverage, realizing along the way that we had had a timing miscommunication and Larissa was going to end later than she had planned, but she was calm and took it all in stride, refusing our offers to cover the extra time she gave to us! Truly she made us and all of our guests feel supported and welcome, and was so lovely to talk with while hiking as well! She also got our sneak peek (99 photos!) to us by the next day in time for us to show off our photos at the small reception despite having those promised a week after! The rest of our photos came about a month later and are just more incredible than we could have ever imagined. She managed to catch the wonderful candid moments and got some amazingly unique shots. We have gotten so many compliments on our wedding photos, hearing multiple times that they are the most amazing wedding photos people have ever seen. Truly cannot recommend Larissa enough!

Sierra + Merina

Need a Photographer for Your Colorado Packraft Elopement?

Meet Larissa + Bailey! As two born and raised Coloradans who have photographed 200+ couples in 100+ locations across Colorado, we specialize in creating a different kind of wedding day that is just as adventurous as you are. We use our experience and knowledge to craft a different kind of wedding day that feels completely authentic to you. Want to hike to a high alpine lake? We can give you trail options for that! Want to canoe along the banks of a mountain lake? We can tell you the best lakes to do it on! Want to watch the sunset from the top of the world? We’ll lead you to our favorite spots for sunset! Book your Colorado Packraft elopement photographer today!

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wedding couple in the mountains on cover of We, The Light Photography's Colorado Elopement Planning Guide and Checklist

In the meantime, be sure to check out our list of Best Places to Elope in Colorado, and our guide for How to Plan a Colorado Elopement!

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People first, photos second. Always.

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