Filming an Elopment in a bilzzard in Ouray
Updated: Oct 17, 2021
It was late Spring and the peak season storm was approaching from the West crossing over the San Juan mountains of Colorado. Light flurries crossed over the windshield as we reached the outskirts of Ouray from the north end of town were a clear signal from the sky above that this would be anything but a walk in the mountain park.
Our couple planning to elope was driving in from the south all the way from San Antonio, Texas. We exchanged a few brief lessons over the phone on the importance of snow tires and the unique challenges winter driving in the mountains presents.
That night in Ouray at Full Tilt Saloon we rallied with Joey and Christian to hatch a final plan for the next day. We had our challenges before us; do we shoot shoot in extreme cold and snow on the side of a mountain or go for an indoor alternate location. Turns out, we had the opportunity to do both.
We setup with Joey and Christian in a cozy historic hotel in Downtown Ouray that provided the warmth and comforts we needed to allow our couple to share amazing stories about themselves and their relationship. Keeping an eye on the weather and our timeline, we concluded our interview and quickly broke down our setup to prepare for the elopement ceremony on a mountain side in town we’d scouted the previous day.
Of course, the snow was light that morning and it wasn’t until we decided to move forward with the elopement outside did visibility become reduced due to an ever increasing amount of snowfall. We set off to our preplanned location the the side of a mountain overlooking the infamous Box Canyon. Upon arrival, we began setting up our cameras in field that was a small shelf on the side of a mountain covered in about two feet of snow all while large flakes of snow and hight winds were pummeling our efforts and battering our very expensive electronics.
This is why we have expensive electronics- weather sealing of critical components, resistance to extreme heat and cold. Once we had our setup ready we ushered our small convoy of family with our couple and began the ceremony. Right then the wind died down and large flakes turned to a light dusting as small faint rays began to break in the clouds. The vows were poetic and the first kiss a taste of pure magic as the snow reflected like princess cut diamonds around them.
We knew we’d captured the moments of a lifetime for Joey and Christian and I could not wait to get back to the warm studio to start our edits of this blissful time in Ouray.