There’s something so magical and incredibly unusual about living in a town where it’s sometimes snows so much that two cars cannot drive down one road at the same time. When the snow banks that are taller than your car it feels both eerie and thrilling. When the street lights shine on new snow while you’re driving down a quiet dark nighttime road, you get straight up fucking giddy because you know what it’s like to jump off of a cliff into powder and whether you landed or not, it’s still an exhilarating experience.
When I first moved to Tahoe, I met a group of people who were significantly better skiers and writers than me and by significant I mean to say that they had all competed professionally and that I had no idea what I was doing. And I spent a couple of years taking shortcuts so that I could still meet them in the lift lines and ride with them while they hit major features. Eventually, I got better and better chasing them around and now there’s people that chase me around (which is not to say that I’m good – I’m nowhere near as good as my friends still) but I’m faster than the average Jerry which is good enough for me. Having lived here for since 2006 now, I can say with certainty that there is something so uniquely special about the feeling you get when it’s finally snowing. It’s a feeling that FILLS you to the brim with the promise of what’s to come. It gives you a pang of emotion, thinking about what it’s like to stand at the top of a powder field on a blue bird day with complete awe at scenery so inspiring that almost hurts to look at.
This may seem like a strange way to start out a wedding blog, but I know that Nicole and David completely understand THIS feeling acutely.
It’s a passion for exploration and adventure and the shared experience that Tahoe provides.
It’s part of the reason that they hired me for their Hideout wedding: because we both have the same awe and wonder for the beautiful place we call home.
Nicole and David are true Tahoe locals and they are two of the most enthusiastic people I’ve ever come across. Enthusiasm for their mountain culture, for the bluegrass festivals that they frequent, for the snowy winter months that we all dream of (David is a ski patroller), and the unbridled joy that the Sierra Nevada mountain range brings to them. They have a deep love of nature, laughter, friendship and shared experiences, whether they be under the stars at night, on the snow, or at a Billy Strings show.
When they first spoke to me, they started to describe their vision for their Kirkwood Hideout wedding and I must say they really had me at “tie dye.”
A TIE DYE WEDDING Y’ALL.
Their wedding was scheduled post-covid and had to be moved a few times, and because it was at a really incredibly special venue, the Hideout at Kirkwood, that allows you to rent the entire property for a few days at a time, the schedule was very limited. To be honest, they may have moved their date more than once but I have PTSD from covid reschedules so I’m not going to dwell on that.
Nicole and David wanted a party where their friends could camp out, where they could rage all night, where the weed was smoked freely, where everyone wore tye die, and one of their favorite bluegrass bands played an entire side of Dark Side of the Moon. It was and shall be one of the most unique weddings I’ve ever experience and had the privilege to photograph. The Hideout at Kirkwood provided the perfect venue for that – with acreage for camping, expansive views of the granite rocks of the Sierra Nevadas, a pond to paddle in, and a barn to rage in. It shall go down as one of my most memorable weddings to date (how exactly did I manage to be so lucky to photograph a tie dye wedding and a wedding with 50 people doing the chicken dance in chicken costumes in one year?)
Nicole and David, may your thirst for shared experiences never be quenched and your love for the mountains you live in never peak.