This article is sponsored by Gore Mountain.
It’s no secret that visitors to Lake George and the Southern Adirondacks are drawn by the area’s natural beauty combined with an abundance of outdoor activities.
You’ve probably dreamed of, or are trying to plan, a Lake George wedding that combines your love of the outdoors with the natural beauty of the Adirondacks; pinned endless images of outdoor wedding themes; and entertained multiple scenarios of how to say “I do” on top of a mountain. Random questions may have sprung to mind: Would the bridesmaid dresses look good with hiking boots? How many miles can my friends carry a case of champagne?
I recently got the chance to attend a wedding ceremony at Gore Mountain in North Creek, celebrating the nuptials of Megan Hann and Ryan Carpenter. Although it’s known as one of the top ski resorts in the Northeast, this was an August wedding, so there was no snow or skis – just breathtaking views and a blissfully happy couple surrounded by their favorite people, with nary a muddy hiking boot in sight.
Ideally, a wedding should reflect the personality of the bride and groom, and this ceremony was perfect in that regard.
Bride Megan Hann told me, “Gore has a special meaning to me and my husband. Ryan has been skiing there since he could first walk. He taught me to ski at Gore eight years ago and we go back every season. We love the mountain and all that it has to offer. I did not consider any other options because I knew this was the place we were meant to get married.”
The trip from base to mountaintop was seamless. I followed the rest of the guests up the winding road that leads to the entrance of Gore Mountain. Although the resort is large, the gondola that brings guests up the mountain was easy to locate.
The views on the 10-minute ride up were spectacular. From the acres of forests to mountains as far as the eye can see, it really put us in a relaxed and festive mood, perfect to enjoy a wedding celebration.
Folding chairs were set up for the ceremony as we all arrived, and there was a wedding arbor decorated with lace and flowers. There was plenty of room on the mountain to spread out and walk around, including an observation deck and picnic tables.
A small building by the gondola served as an ideal spot for Megan and her bridal party to gather before making their big debut. A large umbrella, perfectly positioned, kept the bride out of sight of guests.
Like all engaged couples, this bride and groom have their own back story unique to them: they met in college where they both studied engineering. Because chemistry and science have been such a core part of their relationship, Megan and Ryan incorporated a little science experiment into their ceremony.
If you check out the picture below, you can see a beaker of pink liquid on the table behind them. This resulted from each pouring a different liquid inside which combined to make one perfectly merged liquid; this was not unlike how some ceremonies involve lighting a unity candle together.
What was really cool though? It was foggy on the mountain when we all initially headed up, and even as the ceremony began. But, as you can see, the fog lifted and the expansive view behind the happy couple just opened up. It would have been a touching ceremony regardless, but the view really brought it home.
Following the memorable ceremony, guests enjoyed a champagne toast and the chance to take some excellent photos, including one where the bride was lifted in the air with her arms outstretched, like Kate Winslet on the Titanic.
With such incredible surroundings, the options for special photo ops are endless. From the top of the mountain you can see Blue Mountain, Pete Gay Mountain, and more.
There was enough space on the mountain for the bride and groom, the wedding party, the parents, and many of the guests to gather for a final photo before heading off to the reception.
Although this wedding was fairly small, roughly 60 to 75 people, Gore can accommodate much larger weddings.
“Cindy was great helping us envision the ceremony site and coordinating the ticket sales,” the bride told me about Cindy Mitchell, who is in charge of wedding planning at Gore. “All of the staff was warm and welcoming, from the reception desk to the lift operators. I would definitely recommend Gore as a ceremony site for anyone who loves the outdoors and the Adirondacks. It has a beautiful view both ascending the mountain and at the summit. The staff is very friendly, helpful, and easy to work with. I could not have asked for a more beautiful wedding day.”
Megan and Ryan had their reception off-site, but Gore has the facilities to accommodate a large indoor wedding ceremony and reception right on site.
You can also hold a ceremony at the bottom of the mountain instead of at the top, but it’s clear to me, the top of the mountain is the perfect place to say your vows.
After the ceremony, champagne, and photos, we all headed back down the mountain on one more exhilarating gondola ride before heading into North Creek to continue the wedding celebrations.