When John contacted me about capturing his and Amy’s wedding I nearly jumped out of my chair when he mentioned the Venue. The Silcox Hut up at Mount Hood…of course! It was perfect.
The Silcox Hut is this small warming hut that sits about a mile up the mountain from Timberline Lodge. Originally part of the “make work project” , for me this building represents American pride and history.
For this couple the Silcox Hut meant something more than a beautiful, private location with 180 degree views of Mount Hood’s National Forest. The grooms uncle, the celebrated climber John Smolich, was one of three original climbers who had set out to restore the once abandoned building. For you Mountaineers out there, the name may ring a bell…John Smolich was one the first Americans to attempt a climb up the then-unclimbed Southwest Pillar of K2, also known as the “Magic Line”. However, on one summer day in August 1986 John, one of two lead climbers, fell in an avalanche starting what is known as the 1986 K2 disaster.
John Smolich, an avid climber who spent many an early morning climbing up the steep Palmer Glacier in preparation of the mountains he aspired to climb, leaves behind his legacy for the members of his family. Who stood on the side of the mountain and witnessed the sweet beginnings of this couple’s new story. John (the groom) remembers visiting the hut with his uncle as a boy, and as he and his family gazed up at the crater one could see in their faces the reflection of life’s past stories of passion, determination and a love for the mountains.
As I got in my car to drive down from the mountain I had the 2.5 hour drive home to reflect on the images I’d just captured. Everything had this wonderful meaning….and I was honored to be the one to capture this great story for them.
When two people come together and vow to love, honor and cherish…something greater is happening. These two people join together their experiences, their families and their friends and they begin to weave together a new story. And when that chapter begins with so much meaning and love…how can it not have anything but a happy ending.