A little bit about my most adventurous session to date and a huge lesson I learned as a result. Thank goodness it was with the sweetest and most laid back family.
I talked the Beckers into trying a new location with me. It had mountain top views, wildflowers, walking paths and a parking lot right beside it all. It seemed to good to be true as most mountain top locations require a bit of a hike. I was so excited! We had about an hour drive from Asheville, but they were up for it and so our adventure began.
Upon arriving there was a gate across the road to the top of the mountain where the GPS showed the Science Center and Parking area. My heart sank as we approached the gate. When looking at the Map on our phones it showed that we were about one mile from the top. I asked the Beckers if they were up for a mile walk up the gravel path or if they wanted to reschedule. This amazing family said, “We’re here lets do it!” So we started up the road with their three awesome kids close to bedtime on a summer night. I could NOT stop apologizing for my not knowing about the gated road.
A mile up the road when we reached the marker on our phone GPS there was nothing there and it seemed we still had another mile at minimum left to go. Again, I apologized profusely and asked if they wanted to keep going or turn back. Again, they are amazing and wonderful and we kept going. Another 25 minutes later (yup 45 minutes!!!!) we reached the top. This sweet family dressed in their best hiked for 45 minutes up hill the entire way. God Bless Them! The good news it this location was all I dreamed it would be and more…. and then the clouds rolled in.
We made it all the way to the top and the view was gone. All that could be seen were the flowers, paths and then clouds. Again, I was heart broken, but decided to make the best of it. The silver lining was the beautiful sky with the sunset behind the storm clouds that were rolling in so fast, and the kids were having a blast playing on the mountain top in their fancy dresses.
About 10 minutes into the session it started pouring rain. So here we are an hour walk up a mountain in a down pour of rain and absolutely no where to go. Thank goodness I grabbed a few clear umbrellas to use as props. Everyone tried to take shelter under an umbrella and I tried to keep shooting the best I could. This family and these kids were sooooo amazing through this entire fiasco and I am so thankful for their adventurous spirit and positive attitudes.
Thankfully the rain only lasted about 10 minutes and we had a dry walk down the mountain. It got really dark toward the end and we were walking by cellphone light. I think we finally made it to our cars around 8:30 or 8:45pm. There was one positive to this in that we were still in a remote learning phase so the kids could sleep in the next morning before school started for them. That made me feel a tiny bit better about the late evening. I learned a huge lesson from this session…. ALWAYS go to and lay eyes on a location before you take a family there. While we wouldn’t have these amazing images I’m sure this family would’ve appreciated a less adventurous adventure session on a school night. Becker Family… YOU ROCK!
I also have a fantastic photographer to share with you this week! Her name is Rosa Clark and she is a San Luis Obispo senior photographer. Check out her beautiful images and give her some love.
Valerie Eidson is an award winning Asheville Family Photographer. She specializes in families, children and newborns.