An outdoorsy couple desired a private ceremony on a mountaintop. Only the officiant and two friends, who acted as witnesses, trekked up the trail with the couple. The ceremony was secular and did not include a handfasting, but the magic of nature was captured in the wedding address and vows. A reading was added to the basic Infinity Knot script in place of the handfasting.
After hiking up the mountain, the couple, two witnesses, and the officiant found a flat, open spot on the summit to stand.
It’s wonderful to be here with you, looking out on this beautiful vista, to unite Groom and Bride in marriage.
Bride and Groom, you told me you chose this spot because the view was so magical. I agree! And just as I’m in awe of this incredible view of nature, I’m in awe of your relationship. Ever since your serendipitous meeting at a trailhead and keeping each other company on that first hike, you’ve been spending time together out here in the wild world and falling more and more in love with each other and with the land.
You told me how you’re working together to restore the wildness to the piece of land you bought and where you’re building a home. Groom and Bride, your devotion to each other and to nature is evident in everything you do. It is an honor to be here with you as your awesome relationship becomes a loving marriage.
Declaration of Intent
And so, Bride and Groom, if it is your intent to be joined together in marriage, take each other’s hands.
Couple faces each other and holds hands.
Will you, Groom, take Bride as your wife, and will you promise your friendship and love, in good times and in difficult times, from this day forth?[Groom] I will.
Will you, Bride, take Groom as your husband, and will you promise your friendship and love, in good times and in difficult times, from this day forth?[Bride] I will.
Couple continues to hold hands.
Groom, I invite you to speak your vows to Bride.
Groom reads personal vows.
Bride, I invite you to speak your vows to Groom.
Bride reads personal vows.
From Edward Abbey’s autobiography, Desert Solitaire:
“May your trails be crooked, winding, lonesome, dangerous, leading to the most amazing view.
“May your mountains rise into and above the clouds.
“May your rivers flow without end, meandering through pastoral valleys tinkling with bells, past temples and castles and poets towers into a dark primeval forest where tigers belch and monkeys howl, through miasmal and mysterious swamps and down into a desert of red rock, blue mesas, domes and pinnacles and grottos of endless stone, and down again into a deep vast ancient unknown chasm where bars of sunlight blaze on profiled cliffs, where deer walk across the white sand beaches, where storms come and go as lightning clangs upon the high crags, where something strange and more beautiful and more full of wonder than your deepest dreams waits for you — beyond that next turning of the canyon walls.”
Exchange of Rings
Your wedding rings are symbols of your deepest dreams, your commitment, and your love.
Groom, please place this ring on Bride’s finger and repeat after me: “Bride, I give this ring to you as a sign of my devotion and love.”
Bride, please place this ring on Groom’s finger and repeat after me: “Groom, I give this ring to you as a sign of my devotion and love.”
Pronouncement and Kiss
Bride and Groom, you have committed yourselves to each other in marriage. And so, by the power vested in me by the State of New York, it is my joy and privilege to pronounce you husband and wife. You may kiss.
Wedding couple and witnesses move to picnic basket that was carried up. Witnesses and officiant sign the marriage license, then officiant leaves them to a celebratory picnic.