Intimate Elopement in Truckee California Overlooking Donner Lake

Late Summer Elopement Overlooking Donner Summit in Truckee, California

Apr 21, 2023

Real Elopements

Kate & Justin reached out wanting something simple: an elegant elopement celebrating their love (they’re both doctors!) and the journey they’ve been on, with families present in a place that has brought them so much solace over the years: Truckee, California. More specifically, Donner Lake & Summit. Lucky for them – that is my happy place. I’ve spent so many of life’s best moments on the rolling granite of Donner Summit and exploring the forests around it.

As it happens in September in the mountains of the west – we had a small scare with a fire nearby. After mapping out some backup plans in the event that it impacted our plans, we were super relieved when the week of the elopement came around and the fire was under control. For more reason than one we were grateful!

Their elopement started out in a beautiful cabin on the Truckee River up Highway 89. Jill over at The Board Truckee put together a fabulous charcuterie board (she’s pretty good at that, though!) and we had a dream team of vendors to work with the rest of the day! Kate’s sister made an adorable little invite for their elopement, I had a blast styling it in the breezy September air while Lisa got Kate all glammed up. Christine over at Wilderland Studio created the most dreamy bouquet and the day came together in a way I couldn’t have even imagined to be better!

After a wonderful ceremony in the woods led by Ceremonies by Meredith, the three of us took some time to document their portraits. We had plans to hike a little ways in – but Justin forgot a change of shoes so I took them to a personal fav location that’s a little on the secret side. The sun began to set and alpenglow really popped that night – it was perfect in every way.

Kate wrote the kindest review after their elopement…

“We eloped in Truckee in late September 2022. We booked Ruthanne for the 8 hour package with planning services as well. Working with Ruthanne was everything we hoped for, and more! Her booking process was smooth and we felt like she was able to efficiently understand what we were looking for through her questionnaire and meetings. We loved that she encouraged us to create intentions for the day. Our wedding fell during a nearby wildfire, so we did discuss alternate plans and Ruthanne was very flexible. We were so impressed by her calm, knowledgeable demeanor and we were easily able to trust our day to her expertise in planning. Thankfully, the wildfire did not end up impacting our day whatsoever, and everything worked out perfectly! The photos themselves are nothing short of superb, and are more than we could have envisioned. We would absolutely recommend using Ruthanne for your elopement needs!”



Ruthanne is an Elopement Photographer & Expert based in Lake Tahoe, California. She specializes in elopements inspired by the beautify and elegance of the High Sierra mountains, but you can find her all over the west at any time. She lives in Truckee, California where she was born & raised, with her husband Demetri & Australian Shepherd, Sasha. 


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