Jed wanted to propose to Jenna on Franconia Ridge. A quintessential White Mountain hiking proposal. But also a hike that started their relationship. And over the past two years since, they’ve seen challenging roads, and epic adventures. So it’s a nice metaphor for the life they’ve built together.
After spending a solid year hiking in the White Mountains (Covid therapy), we were pretty excited to bring our cameras along for once. And it’s safe to say, we now have the bug for White Mountain Photography!
We met Jed…hmm, was there ever a time we didn’t know him? Jed is like the product of our photography careers. Initially a regular in Keith family photography days. Then evolving to senior portraits. Family milestones, more family sessions, a wedding…Jed might win the award for Most Commonly Photographed by Kate & Keith. There may be a day when we drop all other assignments and turn into his personal photographer. It’s trending that way.
But it wasn’t until Jenna came along that Jed fully crossed the line into friend zone. Jenna’s contagious smile, and sense of adventure was obvious when Jed showed up to his brother’s wedding with her. Having only dated for two months, the pair seemed like reunited lost socks. Super comfortable around one another, and ready to trek anywhere. Jenna shares our passion for the environment, animals and photography. So it wasn’t hard to feel connected immediately. And Jed lit up in her presence like a string of Christmas lights after Thanksgiving.
However, it was Jed’s proposal plan that set our friendship into gear. He wanted to throw her off track. She’d be immediately suspicious if we entered the scene randomly, knowing us as the family photographers. So it had to seem natural. Knowing the proposal wouldn’t be until May or June, we prepared for the long game. In January we invited them to visit us up in Acadia. Over Valentine’s weekend they stayed in our basement apartment, hiking and exploring. But no ring. This was just to throw Jenna off the scent.
It was their turn to extend an invite to us. And after misaligned schedules, and many group text chats, the opportunity came in May. Jed booked a house rental in Franconia to celebrate their birthdays. Knowing we love hiking in the Whites, we scored an invite from Jenna. And the plan developed.
Our party of four started the hike early in the morning, heading up Falling Waters Trail. We planned a location and signal so we would know when to take our cameras out. The first peak, Little Haystack was crowded and Jed passed. Lincoln, the next summit, was also busy. So it was between there and Lafayette that the moment happened. With breath taking views of the White Mountain range, and rocky ridge line, and just enough cell service to spread the news. Oh, and Jenna said “Yes!”
After nine miles, despite some fatigue, Jed and Jenna were in no shortage of smiles. This was our favorite NH White Mountain proposal to date (okay, also our first.) But, seriously, we might be addicted now. Now, after hiking the NH 48’s, we’re dreaming of all the other fun to be had. Like White Mountain hiking proposals. White Mountain elopements. White Mountain weddings with wedding party outfitted by REI? Jed and Jenna will be married at a venue, so we’ll just have to make the Franconia Ridge hike an annual event. And now we can stop pretending to be friends, and make it official.
Want more White Mountain Wedding inspiration? Check out some of our favorites, like this Jackson NH Wedding or this Fall Waterville Valley Wedding! Or go crazy with a hiking elopement like this one on Katahdin!