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Mitzi & Scott’s Cannon Beach Wedding
Mitzi and Scott’s elopement on the Oregon coast was rescheduled due to COVID-19 (a story we’ve heard dozens of times now), and their new date wasn’t compatible with Tori’s schedule. Instead, I (Amber) got to take over and photograph their celebration using the timeline Tori crafted. The result was magical! These two are truly incredible humans, and their day was remarkable for how present they were throughout the experience. After a full day of adventuring, I looked over and saw Mitzi just watching the sunset with a look of pure joy on her face – I thought to myself, “this is a perfect elopement!” From the moment we met up at their rental in Cannon Beach to their cliffside ceremony and beach picnic, these two enjoyed their definition of a perfect wedding.
An Oregon Coast Wedding Near Cannon Beach
It all started with a coin toss – Mitzi and Scott knew they wanted to elope in Oregon, but were town between Crater Lake or Cannon Beach. They literally flipped a coin and left the location up to fate! I think this is such a fun way to choose your elopement location – I worked with another couple who pulled their location out of a hat. It takes a very laid back personality to choose your wedding destination by chance, but Mitzi and Scott were all for it! They traveled out to Oregon from Georgia for their elopement – the vast dynamic beaches were a wild change from their east coast shoreline.
We began the day at their hotel right on Cannon Beach. Looking out the window was a perfect view of Haystack Rock (anyone recognize this landmark from The Goonies?!) They were still getting ready when I arrived, and the excitement was tangible – they each talked a mile a minute, sometimes speaking over each other. We hit it off right away! We’d spoken on the phone when I took over their elopement coverage from Tori, but the whole day felt like we’d been friends for a long time.
Scott headed down to the beach while Mitzi got into her dress. She’d gone into the bathroom while Scott put his navy blue suit on (a rental he’d had for months now due to the date change), because they wanted to do a first look in front of Haystack Rock. While I was getting photos of Mitzi finalizing her outfit, we laughed at the sight through the window of Scott alone in a suit sitting on one of the beach chairs. He told us later that some beachgoers commented he looked a little overdressed – but he was just smiling waiting for his bride.
Mitzi’s energy was contagious – they were both so excited and their emotions definitely rubbed off on me. I walked out first to show Scott where to stand, looking toward the ocean – when she was ready, Mitzi stepped up from behind him and asked him to turn around. They had a really sweet moment together standing in front of that iconic rock while the water creeped up and got their shoes wet. Scott was tearing up looking at Mitzi in her gorgeous dress, which just made the moment even sweeter. While getting ready in the hotel room, she had told me “I can’t wait to make him cry!”
After their first look on the beach we all masked up and headed out to their first location – Hug Point. When I’d scouted all the locations during the week, the places were basically empty. But Mitzy and Scott got married on a Saturday and I swear half the state of Oregon decided to come to the coast for the weekend! We parked along the street because the lot was full and carefully made our way down the beach, which is normally an easy walk when there isn’t so much traffic. I was a little concerned about how busy it was – I hoped they hadn’t expected total seclusion, but we got lucky! Everyone we saw congratulated Mitzi and Scott, and even went out of their way to try and step out of any shots. We met a couple women who told us today was their first wedding anniversary! Instead of hating the attention, Mitzi and Scott thanked everyone graciously and didn’t skip a beat.
Hug Point is a beautiful cove on the Oregon coast with dramatic black rock cliffs, a waterfall that flows right onto the sand, and caves everywhere! Scott was down on hands and knees at one point trying to see if crawling into one of the caves would go anywhere cool. It was a lovely place to stop and explore before we headed to their ceremony location a little further down the coast.
Elopement Ceremony on a Cliff
We parked at a small trailhead near where Mitzi and Scott wanted to share their wedding vows. The trail led to an overlook called Devil’s Cauldron, which is a gorgeous viewpoint that is mostly fenced off for safety. This trail was also busy, but we continued a little further into the trees toward a clearing at the end of the fence line and it was perfect – no one was up at this point on the trail. Mitzi and Scott were able to exchange their heartfelt vows in a totally secluded place with the most dramatic rocky cliffs behind them! The view at Devil’s Caldron is locally famous for the rocky towers jutting out of the ocean, and we could also see a stunning rock arch in the distance. They were able to get the view they wanted and afterward Mitzi asked if we could just hang out and “take it in.” Their day schedule was intentionally relaxed, which gave them time to play it by ear and spend more time where they wanted.
The water below was a gorgeous bright blue, nearly turquoise, and crashing up against the cliffs. We sat there for a while just soaking it all in – Mitzi and Scott enjoyed those “just married” feelings. Eventually, we moved further down the trail to explore the coastal forest. We trekked through thick brush on a very thin path – tall grasses kept slapping us in the face, and they honestly loved every second of it! The path was lined by moss-covered thick trees, and we hiked nearly 3 miles even though that wasn’t exactly part of the plan – the whole hike felt deep out in nature, even though we only went a few miles from the parking lot.
Our final destination of the day was a place called Short Sand Beach. Since we hiked so far along this trail, we found ourselves at an overlook above the beach watching the surfers below. We turned around and headed back to the car so we could make the short drive to the trailhead, and along the way hiked through a tree – it was so wide the trail went straight through it! At more than one point the thin path was muddy and Mitzi’s sparkly sneakers were getting destroyed, but she just laughed and said it was all part of the adventure.
After a short drive we got down to the beach and picked a spot farther away from the other families and surfers enjoying the beautiful weather. We laid out blankets and popped champagne, which Mitzi and Scott poured into red solo cups. Again, they had the time to simply lay there and take it all in – I can’t say it enough how much I appreciate when couples don’t “fill” their timeline and instead give themselves the freedom to go with the flow and be fully present. This entire day was defined by how stress-free and excited both Mitzi and Scott were to be exploring the beautiful Oregon coast. They had no “expectations” beyond getting married in a lovely place, and because of that their expectations were wildly exceeded!
They ate some charcuterie and lounged on the beach for a bit, then decided to have their first dance in the sand. They pulled up a playlist on one of their phones, and set the phone in a cup to amplify the music. Then, they danced like no one was watching! With eyes only for each other, Mitzi and Scott danced like they were on their own private beach – twirls, dips, and grand gestures included! Afterward, they wandered down to the tide pools to explore. At one point an older gentleman commented on Mitzi’s dirty dress and called her a “sensible woman” for truly making the most of an outfit she only planned to wear once. By the end of the day her hem was tattered and covered in muddy sand, but Scott’s suit wasn’t much better! We ended the day roasting marshmallows on the beach back by their hotel where we started the day. Scott’s suit was covered in marshmallow, strawberry stains, and probably a little champagne as well – a sign that they truly made the most of this Oregon wedding adventure!