It's time once again for my second annual "Year in Photos" post. The year 2012 was full of trips to truly amazing places, both here in the PNW and beyond. Although many of these images were easy choices, I struggled with a few, trying to decide upon the best ones to include. Hopefully these shots meet with your approval. Enjoy my trip down memory lane!
Size matters! Click on any photo to enjoy a larger image.
|Aspen glade, Powderhorn Ski Area, Colorado|
January - The snow was slow to come to Mt. Hood's slopes. Perfect time for a ski trip to Colorado! I journeyed to Grand Junction to ski the Powderhorn Resort with the Brave Ski Mom. After experiencing a Colorado powder day, it was hard to return to the "Cascade concrete" of the PNW.
|Wonderful backcountry ski trip at White River|
February - Wishing to gain more backcountry skiing experience, this winter I "helped" with the Mazamas ski mountaineering class. The winter skills session landed on an amazing bluebird day and the views up White River Canyon could not have been more perfect.
|Cool ice-crusted trees at Mt. Bachelor|
March - Mt. Bachelor is hands-down my favorite place to ski in Oregon. There's always something beautiful to see from its slopes. On a girl's trip with my favorite ski buddy, we marveled at the cool shapes made by these ice-encrusted trees.
|I celebrate my success in reaching Illumination Saddle|
April - Hands-down the best ski trip of 2012, friends John, Young, and I skied up the side of Mt. Hood all the way to Illumination Saddle. It was an amazing blue-sky spring day and the views from 9,000 feet couldn't be beat! However, skiing back down through velvet-smooth "chandelier snow" was the highlight of my day.
|Wildflower explosion on Dog Mtn|
May - Time to trade the skis for hiking boots, I spent every weekend on a trail somewhere. But the spring trek up Dog Mountain to see balsamroot in bloom is a yearly tradition. It's one of my very favorite wildflower hikes. I think you can see why.
|Indian Beach, Oregon Coast|
June - Although not a frequent visitor to the Oregon Coast, an article in Backpacker magazine inspired me to check out a trail once used by Lewis and Clark. An incredibly beautiful path that paralleled the ocean, it left me hungry for more beach exploration.
|One of the many amazing views on the Bluff Mtn Trail|
July - Getting turned around in a maze of Forest Service roads left my friends and I at the wrong trailhead. Not wanting to backtrack, we decided instead to check it out. And the Bluff Mountain Trail rewarded us with expansive mountain panoramas and oodles of flowers. One of my favorite hikes in 2012.
|Three Finger Jack rises above Canyon Creek Meadows|
August - Returning home from a trip to Bend, I made a pit stop to check out Canyon Creek Meadows Trail. I discovered a lovely flower-filled basin with jaw-dropping views of Three Finger Jack Mountain. Another favorite hike for the year.
|Rock lookout tower, Harney Peak, SD|
September - I traveled to South Dakota to visit family. Imagine my delight when it was suggested we take a hike. And even better - we climbed Harney Peak, one of my favorite trails in the Black Hills. It was fun to revisit this amazing area.
|Forest ablaze with fall colors, Indian Heaven Wilderness|
October - Marathon training dominated most of September and kept me off the trails. But once my race was run, it was back to the forest! And a little rain wasn't going to stop me. Bear and I spent a wet, but wonderful day in the Indian Heaven Wilderness. The fall colors were the best I've seen.
|South Falls, Silver Falls State Park|
November - Anxious not to miss the peak of fall colors, I took a rainy trek through Silver Falls State Park. The colorful foliage and gushing waterfalls were well worth getting a little bit wet.
|Eagle Creek Trail, Columbia River Gorge|
December - While waiting for the snow to accumulate on the mountain, Bear and I passed the time with a trek on the Gorge's famous Eagle Creek Trail. An amazing trail with dizzying views, hiking here is always an adventure. Even in late fall, this place is incredibly beautiful. Yes, it's true - there's never a bad time to hike in the Gorge.
So that's my 2012 photo adventures in a nutshell. Lots of good material for blogging and creating a calendar. And speaking of calendars, I'd like to announce the winner of the "Linda's Lens" calendar giveaway. The lucky person is Sharon, who blogs at Gains and Losses: Life Through Sharon's Eyes. Sharon, please email me at firstname.lastname@example.org with your address, and I'll get the calendar in the mail to you. Thanks everyone who commented. I really enjoying hearing from so many nice people.
Here's to more great adventures in 2013. I'm planning some fun things for the coming year. And you know, I'll be photographing them to share with you all right here at Linda's Lens.
Wishing everyone a Happy New Year!
Linking to: Share Your Cup Thursday and This or That Thursday.