Okay, well I made the hike last Saturday. Whew! It is a lot more challenging than I anticipated. Google Maps totally lied about it being a nice tree-lined ceremony at the top. It is a large boulder, about 1000sqft. It took me 1.5 hours and I was sweating like a pig. Luckily I dont need to dress up.
The hike is a nice little trail for half a mile. Then it gets more steep, with a lot of obstacles in the way (trees, rocks, etc). The last half mile involves climbing up and over boulders! With no obvious foot or hand holds. So, a little more extreme than I was expecting, but I did it. Based on my time of 1.5 hours the bride has decided to tell the guests to get started earlier than expected. I found a half way point (right before you start climbing the rocks) to take pictures of the guests hiking. I'm going to make sure I get there extra early.
This is a photo of the ceremony location taken with my phone. The time was 4:45, and the ceremony will be taking place at 3pm. This brings me to my big question: exposure settings for my camera.
There was strong back light and my husband was wearing black to mimic a groom's tux (although not sure if the groom will actually be in a tux, dunno how he'd survive the hike, but the bride is wearing a wedding dress). If I exposed for the groom, I'd get a shutter speed of 1/30, too slow and blows out the sky.
Would a neutral density filter help in this situation? What about in combination with a flash? I hope to get these settings right with minimal fuss--I dont want to mess around too much and accidentally fall off the mountain!
There will also be 2 cellists and champagne for 35 attendees at the top of this mountain. Whoever is hiking up with that stuff is CRAZY!