Charlie and Whitney got engaged Sunday morning on top of Mount Philo. Now, for Whitney, this was a HUGE surprise. For Charlie, though, the event was weeks in the making. He had bought the ring, had talked with Whitney‘s parents and he had just moved himself and all of his belongings up to Vermont from Texas, so to be closer to Whitney (who lives in Louden, NH).
Charlie called me a couple of weeks ago to see if I was available to document this life-changing event and I was thrilled to say yes. The plan was for him to hike the trail with Whitney and reach the top of Mt. Philo about 10 am. I had expected to drive up the access road, but when I arrived, it was closed! I threw my camera over my shoulder and practically ran the whole way to the to the top so I wouldn’t be late- Thankfully, Charlie and Whitney were running behind also and I had a few minutes to catch my breath before they arrived!
It was crowded on the mountaintop and I blended right in– pretending to be just another tourist enjoying the view! I followed liesurely behind as Charlie led Whitney by the hand toward a more private spot. After a couple of minutes, Charlie discretely reached into the pocket of his fleece and then, just like that, he was down on one knee, holding the ring box open and up toward his confused and nervous girlfriend.
And as I pressed my shutter button, I heard Whitney blurt out, “What the F-CK are you doing?!?!” and Charlie laughed.
Whitney was definitely overwhelmed and I think it took her a moment or two to grasp what was happening. Charlie rose back up, slid the ring on Whitney’s ringer and then they embraced. I was about 50 feet away, shooting pictures with a 200mm telephoto lens, and though I couldn’t hear Whitney say much more, I presumed that, through her tears and laughter, her answer was “YES”.
The ring was gorgeous, like something from the 1940’s Hollywood glam period. It had that feel of old estate jewelry, even though Charlie had the ring custom made. It fit perfectly, because Charlie had solicited help from Whitney‘s sister to find out her ring size-Good job, Charlie!
After Whitney‘s shock subsided a bit, I introduced myself and I made some fun pictures of the couple. I loved that Whitney was so comfortable with this, even though her hair was up in a pony tail, and she wasn’t exactly dressed for a “portrait session”. Of course, she looked gorgeous (and happy) in every frame!
We were about to head back down and I laughed as Whitney kept her left arm raised while walking, joking that she was afraid to damage the ring!
I made pictures of the newly engaged couple all along the walk down and Charlie had fun telling Whitney about all of the little things that he had done in recent months and how he was afraid that she would figure out his plan.
The final straw, Charlie told her, was that she had met him in Vermont this weekend and forgot her hiking shoes at home. He insisted that they go shopping for new shoes so that they could go up Philo on Sunday as planned. Whitney laughed, and said that in retrospect, she couldn’t understand why he cared that much about the hike OR that her new shoes then didn’t match her old jacket and that Charlie felt it necessary to buy her a new jacket also! Bonus!
Here’s a video recap of the surprise mountaintop proposal, set against the appropriate song “Marry Me” by Bruno Mars:
If you’d like to see all of the pictures from this romantic morning on Mt. Philo, then you need to get the password from the newly engaged couple and then follow this link:WHITNEY AND CHARLIE’S GALLERY
And the wedding?? Stay tuned…