Amanda + Jonathan
Texas Adventure Elopements
For weeks before their elopement day, the forecast was clear with highs in the 80s- absolutely perfect for Amanda and Jonathan’s elopement at Big Bend. Less than a week beforehand, the weather changed and there were slight chances for scattered showers, but nothing serious. Little we did know how incredible that forecast was going to turn out for us.
The morning was slightly overcast with the sun peeking through the clouds from time to time. We all drove into Alpine for an early morning breakfast at Judy’s Bread and Breakfast cafe, about an hour and a half north of Terlingua. After an hour or so of casually visiting together, we all went back to our respective cabins to prepare for the big day.
Amanda and Jonathan stayed at El Cerrito at Tres Arroyo’s cabins, cozy tiny home with a breathtaking view of the mountains spanning for miles. When I arrived, it was kinda chilly, the light rain was gentle and refreshing, softly pattering against the tin roof and clinging to the windows. You know, the kind of weather where everything around you just has this incredible vibrance- greens are greener, flowers are bursting with color and blues are deep and rich. The buzz of anticipation for her small intimate wedding enveloped the tiny cabin as both Amanda and Jonathan’s families busied themselves in preparation for the day.
Not long after I arrived, we kicked the guys out into the cool drizzle so Amanda and her mom could get her in her beautiful lace Vivienne atelier dress that was purchased in Houston Texas. Once Amanda and their adorable sweet pups were all dressed up for their Texas Elopement, we headed outside for her first look with Jonathan. The mountains surrounded us on all sides, rain clouds softly caressing the peaks as she walked up to him while he waited with anticipation. The look on his face says it all.
With their canvas packs and hand-woven blankets all packed and ready to go, we began the hour and a half drive to Santa Elena Canyon for some fun, romantic portraits at the Rio Grande. The rain clouds grew more ominous as the drive went on, with some sprinkles here and there. Thankfully, our time at the canyon stayed completely dry, except of course when it was time to play in the river! They danced and splashed in the cool water, enjoying the scenic views and peaceful serenity of the river with no other hikers in sight. It was surreal being there completely alone.
After a good hour of playing and relaxing, it was time to head into Big Bend National Park Basin for their small, intimate ceremony. As we drove up and around the winding roads leading to the basin, the clouds enveloped us in a magical fog, the sun streaming through in tiny bursts of vivid light between the mountains. It was a scene straight out of Jurassic Park. The rain started coming down hard as everyone donned ponchos, umbrellas, and blankets to stay dry and warm. They said their vows huddled under a single umbrella, in the presence of their parents. There wasn’t a dry eye in attendance, rain notwithstanding.
As if the views we saw until this point weren’t incredible enough, what came next was hands down the most mind-blowing experience any of us had ever seen in our lives. We made the drive back to Terlingua, I was grabbing a shot of their pup, who at the moment was very interested in the taste of their back window when I saw the single most vivid rainbow in existence. I immediately told them to pull the heck over. Everyone parked and was breathless as a second, more subtle rainbow appeared above the first. The clouds in front parted just slightly to illuminate the two of them as they took their first dance as a married couple in the middle of this desolate road under the rainbows and storm clouds. ON THEIR ELOPEMENT DAY IN TEXAS, Y’ALL!! HOW INCREDIBLE!
The rest of the evening did NOT go to plan, but this moment carried us in euphoria through the night. As we stopped in Terlingua for much-needed fuel, not a split second after their tank filled, the power in the entire town went out. No one could pump gas, none of the restaurants could serve food and we were all at a loss for what to do. After stopping at the cabin to change out of their soaking wet clothes, everyone was starving. We hadn’t even realized we hadn’t eaten since breakfast at 9 am that morning! We made it to Alpine around midnight and inhaled McDonald’s like we hadn’t eaten in decades. It was such a long day filled with surprise at every turn. It’s a testament to letting the adventure take you where it will and not fighting against it. Plans are important to have, but never forget that on your wedding day, the plan is not the point. It’s all about the experience! Especially when you hire people who know how to maneuver when hiccups happen or places to go when Plan B, C + D doesn’t work out
To get more information on eloping or having your small intimate wedding in Big Bend National Park, please visit our sister website at https://bigbendweddingandelopement.com or shoot us a message here on Texas Elopements by clicking here