ARE YOU READY TO BE BLOWN AWAY? Because I definitely was when capturing this magical Crouching Lion adventure engagement in O’ahu, Hawaii.

Lace up your hiking boots and check out more of Alesia and James’s ultimate hiking adventure.

MEET THE COUPLE: Alesia and James

James and Alesia have been best friends for over 10+ years.
See where I am going with this?!

If Alesia ever had a bad date, James would always be the first one she would call to laugh about it with or be a shoulder to cry on. James has always been her rock even though they both didn’t know it. 

The funny thing about being best friends for so long, all their other best friends knew they were the perfect match for each other except themselves.

From Bestfriends to an O’ahu Engagement

After so many bad dates and heartbreaks, James and Alesia finally decided to give each other a shot and the rest was history. Statistics do say, 1 out of 3 people marry their best friends! Numbers don’t lie, and they sure didn’t in this case!

Alesia and James hail from the PNW, specifically Portland, Oregon. When they officially started dating, they started spending their Januarys in Maui, where James’ mom lives, to escape the rain and cold weather. They both have a special place in their heart for Hawaii where their love really blossomed together. So it naturally seemed fitting to have their engagements in Hawaii.

Alesia is a destination wedding and elopement videographer. So, when it finally came for her turn to get married, she didn’t bat an eye. They both wanted to do an epic destination wedding and are getting married in Thailand in November 2023. 

I am beyond ecstatic that these two are getting married! 


It’s no secret the beauty of O’ahu, Hawaii is ENDLESS! I mean, there is definitely a reason it is such a popular destination… RIGHT?

We decided to hike to one of the dreamiest spots on the island and coincidentally one of the rainiest locations; the Crouching Lion Hike. This particular hike is located on the island’s east side across from Ewa Forest Preserve. This side of the island tends to get A LOT of rain from the trade winds interacting with the mountains.

The nature of this Crouching Lion Adventure Engagement Session was crazy… BUT man, it was worth it.

These babes hiked up a slippery mountain, stuck it out in the pouring rain, and still DANCED IN THE RAIN SMILING! Nothing got in the way of the joy of their engagement.

CROUCHING LION TIP: be prepared for it to rain! All in all, let’s just say Alesia had her “Notebook” in the rain moment AND IT WAS PURE MAGIC! 


This was a genuine ADVENTURE engagement session.

As a destination photographer who specializes in adventure sessions… whether they are engagement or elopement… I have noticed that there is a lot of speculation about what actually constitutes an adventure session.

Let me be the first to tell you…

An engagement session hiking throughout the rainy jungle of O’ahu? DEFINITELY AN ADVENTURE SESSION.

Capturing this O’ahu Engagement Session Digitally and on Film

Alesia, being in the wedding industry herself, one of her niches is capturing couples on a Super8mm Video Film Camera.

Having dabbled in the art of film videography, It was fun capturing James and Alesia playing around with her Super 8mm camera.

I incorporated 35mm film portraits on my Contax T2 with Portra 400 film as well! There is NOTHING LIKE THESE FILM PHOTO COLORS THAT DO HAWAII JUSTICE! 

Digital can’t recreate these colors! I highly recommend incorporating film photos in your engagement session as a beautiful bonus. Plus, having both just means you get more photos to remember this special time in your life.

For more sessions in Hawaii, Check out this Maui Elopement!


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