Lake Isabelle Elopement // Indian Peaks Wilderness


Bride and groom hike to Lake Isabelle for their morning elopement ceremony.

Often it's the things you don't plan for or expect that deliver the most memorable moments on your wedding day. For my husband and I, it was a ray of sunshine that poked through the clouds as I walked down the aisle and landed on my shoulder. Our guests still talk about that moment... and the sudden rainstorm that began as we shared our first kiss! For Keyshla and Victor, that memorable moment was a moose surprising us on our hike to their wedding lake and forcing us to hide behind pine trees down trail.


In planning their elopement from Florida, Keyshla and Victor did tons of research before choosing Lake Isabelle and contacting me to photograph and film their special day. The promise of chilly temperatures and the likelihood of snow didn't deter them from their dream of a September elopement at this special spot. We began to put together the pieces of their sunrise hiking elopement in the Indian Peaks Wilderness. Where would they say their vows? How would they celebrate? Who would make their bouquet and boutonniere? How would we get the wedding gown to the lake? Who would bring the bluetooth speaker? Where would they go to dinner that night?


After months of planning we finally had every detail finalized. I drove to their Airbnb in the dark that morning so that they could follow my car up into the mountains. Considering the winding foggy roads at 4am, it was a good thing they were following me! I even saw a mountain lion crossing the road at that early hour.


At the trailhead we pulled on our coats and headlamps and walked towards the snowy path. Pine trees towered overhead and there were no sounds but our conversation and our footsteps. By 6:10am we had completed most of the two mile trail and were cresting the final hill before the lake - perfectly on schedule for a sunrise first look. But, the moose had other plans for us! A massive bull moose was parked in the middle of the trail enjoying his breakfast. We quietly backtracked and agreed there was no way to safely circumvent the moose, so we hiked down a ways and started to change on opposite sides of a big boulder. I helped Keyshla with the corset back of her gown as Victor removed his hiking boots. It was at that moment that he turned around and was nearly face to face with the moose. He hadn't heard it approach and was forced to move off the trail into the bushes to avoid a confrontation. 'Moose can be incredibly dangerous' was certainly a thought in the forefront of Victor's mind as he stood in the snow in his socks, praying he wouldn't get frostbite before he could go back to the area where his shoes were waiting.


Eventually, we were all dressed and able to safely make it around the moose. We hiked the last quarter mile to lake Isabelle and prepared for their first look and vows. From there, everything went smoothly. The warm, bright sun was beating down on us as they finally exchanged vows and rings, cuddled in their custom blanket, and took their first portraits as a married couple. As we hiked down we snacked on energy bars and sandwiches. Before we entered the cover of the pine trees, we pulled out their bluetooth speaker for a first dance on the lower trail.


Back at the car, they signed their marriage license and we parted ways. Me, to download and review their photos and video! Them, to nap before a celebratory dinner at Frasca in Boulder.





Couple hikes to Lake Isabelle in the dark for their morning elopement.

Bride and groom hike on trail for adventure elopement.

Bride and groom pose with Indian Peaks Wilderness in background.

Bride and groom overlook Indian Peaks Wilderness during elopement.

Sunrise on Indian Peaks Wilderness during September elopement.

Sunrise over Indian Peaks Wilderness for September elopement.

Moose in valley near Lake Isabelle in Indian Peaks Wilderness.

Close up of bridal bouquet for mountain elopement.

Bride and groom prepare for elopement at Lake Isabelle.

Groom in maroon jacket at Lake Isabelle.

Bride approaches groom for first look at Lake Isabelle in the Indian Peaks Wilderness.

Bride and groom first look at Lake Isabelle.

Bride and groom embrace at Lake Isabelle during September elopement.

Bride and groom pose on shore of Lake Isabelle during elopement ceremony.

Bride reads vows to groom during elopement in Indian Peaks Wilderness.

Bride reads vows during elopement on Lake Isabelle.

Groom reads vows on shore of Lake Isabelle during elopement ceremony.

Groom in maroon jacket reads vows with Indian Peaks in the background.

Bride and groom read vows during elopement ceremony in the mountains.

Bride and groom embrace on shore of Lake Isabelle during mountain elopement.

Bride and groom kiss with the Indian Peaks mountains in the background.

Bride shows off wedding garter during mountain elopement ceremony.

Panoramic view of bride and groom eloping at Lake Isabelle in the Indian Peaks Wilderness, CO.

Bride and groom embrace with snow-dusted mountains in the background.

Bride and groom pose at Lake Isabelle during September elopement in the Indian Peaks Wilderness.

Bride and groom embrace with Indian Peaks mountain range in the background.

Close up of bridal bouquet, his and her vows, and wedding rings during mountain elopement ceremony.

Bridal bouquet and wedding rings during mountain elopement.

Bride and groom overlook Indian Peaks from shore of Lake Isabelle.

Bride and groom kiss at Lake Isabelle during elopement ceremony.

Bride and groom stand on boulder at Lake Isabelle.

Close up view of wedding ring at mountain elopement.

Bride and groom hike trail in wedding dress for mountain elopement.

Bride and groom surrounded by mountains during Indian Peaks Wilderness elopement.

Groom in maroon jacket and bride in lace wedding dress embrace in Indian Peaks Wilderness.

Bride and groom hug with Indian Peaks in the background.

Bride and groom hike trail in Indian Peaks Wilderness during elopement.

Bride and groom kiss in jackets on hiking trail.

Bride hikes trail in wedding dress during mountain elopement.

Bride in wedding dress and groom hold hands while hiking on a trail.

Wedding dress train on hiking trail during mountain elopement.

Bride poses on hiking trail in her wedding dress.

Bride and groom sign marriage license in Indian Peaks Wilderness.

Groom in maroon jacket signs marriage license in Indian Peaks Wilderness.

Bride signs marriage license on hiking trail in Indian Peaks Wilderness.

Bride and groom sign marriage license during elopement in Indian Peaks Wilderness

Bride and groom pose with marriage license in Indian Peaks Wilderness during elopement.

Bride and groom pose on hiking trail in Indian Peaks Wilderness.

Bride and groom pose in mountain forest during elopement.

Bride in wedding dress and groom in maroon jacket kiss in Indian Peaks Wilderness

Bride and groom kiss during elopement ceremony in the Indian Peaks Wilderness.