Marvin Gaye sang ‘There ain’t no mountain high enough’ and James Sissom, 35, and Ashley Schmieder, 32, from California took the song quite literally when they decided to trek through the snow for three weeks to tie the knot on Mount Everest.
The adventurous couple’s photographer Charleton Churchill documented the entire journey -- braving freezing temperatures, tough terrain and altitude sickness to capture them exchanging vows at one of the base camps at 17,600 sq feet above sea level. (See his other works here)
And the photographs below give us #relationshipgoals!
- All photographs courtesy Charleton Churchill
James and Ashley flying from Kathmandu to the base of the mountain to prepare for the wedding adventure.
Ashley, the bride, explaining her choice for the wedding said, “After much deliberation, we decided a traditional wedding was not the right fit for us. As much as we would have loved to share our special day with our family and friends, we were both drawn to the idea of eloping during an incredible vacation.
“We both are avid lovers of the outdoors and had experience at altitude up to 14,000 feet, but we knew the three week Everest Base Camp trek would be far more physically and mentally demanding than anything we’ve experienced.”
The couple and the photographer trained for the year before they set out on their journey just to acclimatise themselves with the harsh conditions. Frigid temperatures, altitude sickness and the tough terrain is what they had to battle.
The happy couple on their way during the arduous trek. The photographer in his blog wrote, “Ashley is a tough girl who crushed it on the mountain trail and maintained a great pace. James is a great man who took care of Ashley, always looking after her needs. Plus he’s a comedian who made us laugh often. It can be difficult after a few days on a long mountain trek with all the pressure and lack of resources to maintain a smile, but we did well.”
There’s no gain without pain. Here’s an accurate image of how the couple felt after hiking for 4-8 hours.
There’s the groom! Despite the wedding being adventurous, a dash of traditionalism was infused with the groom wearing a tuxedo and the bride wearing a beautiful white gown.
Here comes the bride. Doesn’t she look radiant? The sherpas helped Ashley get into her gown.
The couple chose to wear their beanie and glasses for the wedding. Quaint, we think, but we like it.
The look of love. James is all smiles as he catches sight of his to-be wife.
A moment to enjoy the view of Mount Everest together and where they have been.
Radiant in her wedding gown, Ashley takes a moment to look out across the beautiful landscape.
The bride in white against the backdrop of the white snow-capped mountains leaves us speechless. We are surely getting green with envy!
The couple hold each other in a loving embrace as they celebrate their marriage in the clouds .
Could there be anything prettier than this? The wedding was simple, no minister, no pomp. Just two people crazy in love with each other, their vows and a photographer. Feeling inspired anyone?
Ashley and James stand in their wedding finery, surrounded by the rugged majesty of the mountains.
A couple that climbs together, stays together!
Ashley signing the rock which is customary after arriving at the Mt Everest base camp, but with their wedding date and wedding.