People sing that they would climb every mountain for love. One lovely Californian couple did that in real life! The two climbed the highest mountain in the world and got married there.
The two daring love birds are Ashley Schmeider and James Sisson.
James Sisson and Ashley Schmeider got married on March 16, 2017. This couple made history. They became the first duo to wed at Mount Everest Base Camp in a tux and traditional wedding gown.
They always knew that a run-of-the-mill wedding ceremony was not their cup of tea. This couple wanted the biggest day of their lives to be more extraordinary. That is why they decided to get married on the highest mountain in the world, Mount Everest.
Ironically, Ashley initially had a tropical location in mind for her wedding. She contacted adventure photographer Charleton Churchill about planning it.
However, Churchill thought of taking it to the next level. So he suggested the idea of Everest to Ashley and James. The couple excitedly agreed.
Churchill’s idea took wedding planning to a whole different level. It was more adventurous, fun but also came with a lot of hard work and risks.
32-year-old Ashley and 35-year-old James spent an entire year preparing and training for the adventure. As you can imagine, climbing Everest was not an easy task. They had to be ready to face many hardships.
They arrived in Nepal in early March. Along with them went Adventure photographer Charleton Churchill and their tour guide. They took about three weeks to reach the 17,000-foot-high Base Camp Everest. That is where they finally said their vows after braving deep snow and altitude sickness together.
Churchill wrote on his website that overall it was an epic trip. However, he added that it all came with some suffering, doubt, fear, anxiety, and physical pain.
It was a long way to go. Every day of the journey, the couple and Churchill hiked between four and eight hours. On top of it all, it started snowing hard too. Churchill, the couple’s photographer who went with them on the journey, explained the trip on his website. “Our Sherpa guide said that it dumped more snow on us than it had throughout winter,” Churchill explained.
They were exhausted, of course.
At times, it looked as if the couple might not follow through with the epic wedding. The journey took a toll on their health. At one point, James developed a bad case of “Khumbu cough.” His condition worsened and became deeper the higher they climbed.
The trip also showed James Ashley’s great partnership. The two climbed on through sickness, took care of each other, and showed great courage.
Throughout the trip, James took care of Ashley, always looking after her needs. Ashley showed a lot of strength and maintained an incredible pace as well.
James was the mood maker of the group. Throughout the journey, his great jokes made everyone laugh and smile. Even though it was a difficult journey full of hardships, they all had fun. Churchill explained all of them became close like a family. The challenges they faced somehow made everyone grow closer.
James and Ashley exchanged their vows at Base Camp of Mount Everest, in front of the famous Khumbu ice-fall. This place has the beautifully carved Nuptse Face in the backdrop.
Ashley became the first bride ever to get married in a wedding dress on Everest.
Despite the frigid temperatures, Ashley wore a traditional wedding gown for her very non-traditional wedding photos. James, on the other hand, wore a tux.
Adventure wedding photographer Charleton Churchill planned a speedy session of post-vow photos at Everest Base Camp. All of them worked hard for the beautiful images in the cold.
It was difficult for Ashley, mainly because of her wedding dress. Her arms were bare in the below-zero temperatures. So they had to keep her warm.
Warm soup, food, and warm liquids came in handy in this situation.
They had to keep moving fast during the photo session. Churchill explained that the temperatures read around -8 degrees to 10 degrees Fahrenheit during the shoot. All of them were extremely cold. It was not easy to capture the beautiful moments of the couple in such weather conditions. Churchill’s hands quickly went cold whenever he took off the gloves to take photos.
He even had to turn live Facebook filming off as his hands were freezing. Despite the frigid temperatures, Churchill managed to capture the couple’s sweetest moments expertly.
Churchill said that when striving for something great, there’s usually a cost. There is no glory without suffering.
He was right. Although it took a toll on them, the photographs turned out glorious!
The beauty of the mountain made the outcomes look mesmerizing. The photos show a perfect blend of rich blue, white, and rugged stone.
The morning after their wedding ceremony, the couple boarded a helicopter back to the base of the mountain.
As the ceremony was far away from home, they had no minister to officiate the wedding. Yet, The couple exchanged vows and rings. The two made heartfelt promises to pursue and love each other for the rest of their lives. This moment was so meaningful, knowing where they were and how hard they worked to reach there. Churchill said that it felt surreal that the two were getting married, surrounded by the memorizing mountains.
James and Ashley had incredible courage and strength through this trip. They also showed how great their partnership is. They held each other through all the challenges and journeyed forward. We hope their marriage pulls through harsh conditions just as well as they did on this trip.
You must be eager to check out the photos of this extraordinary ceremony. We put together some of the most breathtaking moments of the wedding for you. So keep scrolling to check them out!