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When Mirka + Spencer first reached out to me about their dreams for a snowy winter elopement in the mountains, I knew right off the bat that I was going to love these two. And THEN when they mentioned that one of the reasons they inquired with me was our shared passion for sustainability, leaving no trace, and respecting nature, I was a goner! Despite all the crazy weather that the PNW decided to throw at us, Mirka + Spencer were total badasses and fully embraced the wild adventure that their big day brought. Their snowy adventure elopement in the Mt. Baker Wilderness is one I will never forget!
A Wild Winter Adventure Elopement in the Mt. Baker Wilderness
Why Mirka + Spencer decided to elope
I’m a sucker for a good love story, and I’m even more of a sucker for hearing the reasons behind a couple’s decision to elope. To say to hell with societal expectations, and to throw tradition to the wind in favor of a day that celebrates them in the most authentic way possible. So you bet I’m about to give you a little insight into why Mirka + Spencer decided to elope, in case you can relate to how they were feeling when planning their special day!
These two had always dreamt of a snowy, winter wedding, but soon realized that the type of venue they were looking for was a) too far away from their home and b) just not in the budget. They told me about how, before really starting to plan their own wedding, they had attended 2 weddings of friends and noticed that both weddings felt like they were more for the families, than for the actual couple. Sound like any wedding you’ve been to?
Mirka and Spencer realized that they didn’t want to deal with the opinions and expectations of others like these couples were, and would much rather focus on planning their special day without the extra headaches of family members butting in with their thoughts. They knew they wanted their day to be focused on them, rather than trying to please their guests – and I would say that they massively succeeded!
A woodsy winter elopement theme
When they inquired with me, this lovely bride & groom had a stunning vision for their big day already in their heads: a snowy, winter wonderland vibe with formal outfits & emerald green accents, inspired by an adventure in the mountains. The guys wore black suits with black ties, except for Spencer who wore a dark gray suit + an emerald green tie and both dads, who wore a touch of green as well. Both of their moms wore the most gorgeous green dresses, and Mirka’s sister & sister in-law wore beautiful shades of purple. They did an absolutely amazing job blending rich, earthy tones, reminiscent of a sunset in the mountains, + the deep greens of the PNW forest for the loveliest color scheme!
I also loved the attention they put into their details, with Mirka wearing snowflake jewelry, Spencer wearing snowflake cufflinks, and their rings being stored in a personalized ring box. Shoutout to the vendors who helped bring this couple’s unique vision to life so perfectly!
Getting ready at The Greybird Retreat in Deming
Mirka spent the morning getting ready in the gorgeous Airbnb they rented in Deming, the Greybird Retreat. This was an absolutely stunning cabin nestled in the trees just 30 minutes from Mt. Baker Ski Area, complete with a hot tub out on the deck, an outdoor shower, massive windows, and breathtaking architecture! 10/10 recommend it if you’re looking for a place to stay and/or get ready for your Mt. Baker adventure elopement.
Looking for more dreamy Airbnbs to potentially rent for your elopement? Check out the guide I recently put together featuring Washington’s Best Airbnb Rentals for an Elopement!
Sweet first looks in the forest
I love me a heartwarming first look with parents JUST as much as I love first looks between two soon-to-be newlyweds. Once Mirka was all dolled up and looking like a queen in her winter wedding gown, she went into the forest for not one, but two first looks – the first with her dad, and the next with her new hubby. Seeing this beautiful bride have such special moments with these two in the most magical setting was such a treat! And I knew the mountain would be cold, so we checked off all the important group photos at the cabin before heading out, which I’m super glad we did because as you’ll soon find out, the weather was WILDIN’ at the mountain.
A badass couple ready for a true adventure
A little backstory before we move onto their ceremony: I had scouted the location a week before to make sure everything was set for their snowy ceremony, but the PNW had other plans. There was a HUGE snowstorm in the days leading up to the elopement, and the same path I had walked the week before in hiking boots was now literally buried under feet of powder, that would have been tough to navigate even in snowshoes.
Sooo we tried walking the 100 feet out to the spot anyway, just for fun, but we post-holed the whole way there, fell over in the snow, and general had a hell of a time. But when I tell you that Mirka is THE definition of a badass adventure bride, I mean badass! She braved the snow with no problems whatsoever, leading the pack even though the snow was up past her knees with an unfaltering smile on her face the whole time. Spencer was just as ready to go with the flow and embrace the weather – they were completely unfazed by the change in plans thanks to the avalanche risk, and never lost sight of what they were really there for: a snowy elopement in a beautiful winter wonderland with the mountains behind them. Even their guests were all troopers, and had amazing attitudes despite the freezing cold and difficult walking paths!
If you want to be just like Mirka + Spencer and be ready to totally go with the flow no matter what the PNW throws at you, check out my brand new guide on How to Embrace “Bad” Weather On Your Elopement Day!
A magical ceremony in a winter wonderland
Once we finally found a spot in the snow for their ceremony, Mirka and Spencer exchanged their vows in the middle of the most magical winter wonderland. The views of the mountains behind them and the snow-covered hills surrounding them was absolutely breathtaking – it seriously felt like a scene out of a movie! Their ceremony featured a few traditions, including a wedding lasso, coins to represent Mirka’s heritage, and a prayer. It was such a special moment after so much planning, and so much effort put into getting to their freaking ceremony spot in the first place!
If you’re specifically interested in eloping in the winter and having a gorgeous, snowy elopement like these two did, be sure to read through my guide to How to Plan a Winter Elopement in Washington so you know exactly what to expect + how to prepare!
Snowy Mt. Baker elopement portraits
We took full advantage of the picturesque winter landscape and snapped a ton of epic Mt. Baker elopement portraits of the newlyweds. You’d think they would be tired of the snow and ready to head back to their Airbnb ASAP, but they were such troopers and were still super down to trek through the snow for some kickass portraits to remember their day by!
A sweet review from the bride + groom
Lastly, I wanted to share the absolute kindest review that Mirka and Spencer left for me after their elopement – my heart was so, so full reading it. What an honor it was to be there with these two for their crazy, beautiful elopement experience!
“Marla made our wedding day process the most beautiful, stress free and unforgettable experience. When we met Marla, we knew immediately we wanted someone so cheerful, kind and caring to adventure out with us on our special day! She helps you plan your elopement step by step and focuses on you and ensuring you have everything you want and more that day! Marla is so full of knowledge and doesn’t let you stress about finding an answer because she seriously will give you so many resources and is available every step of the way! When we spoke to Marla about wanting a winter elopement she was up for the challenge!
Marla is not only your photographer, she is the adventurous friend, your biggest advocate for having fun and honestly your maid of honor because she makes it all about you and making sure you have the best experience! She is truly your cheerleader on your wedding day!
Marla made our vision come to life! When we received our gallery we were in awe and so taken away by her talent and what she captured that day! She made us relive every moment of our wedding day! She is a true storyteller with her images. We couldn’t have been more thankful have her with us! You make a lifelong friend because she will always be an important part of your wedding day! She makes you love planning your special day and we will forever be thankful for the journey! Thank you Marla!!!”
Mt. Baker Elopement Photography Packages
Whether you want to elope in the middle of the summer with clear, blue skies & lush green meadows or you want to head into the mountains in the middle of winter like Mirka + Spencer did, it would be an absolute honor to document your Mt. Baker elopement. Fun fact: Mt. Baker is actually where my love and I got married, so it holds an extra special place in my heart, and I love any excuse to go back. You can take a look at my Mt. Baker elopement packages here, and then reach out to me here, whether you’re interested in more info, have a few Q’s, or are ready to get this party started!
I’ve got even more Mt. Baker elopement guides & resources to help you plan your special day in this beautiful part of Washington – take a look below!