2016 has been full of ups and downs. Fun ski trips with friends. Great hikes to scenic places, both familiar and new. Meeting five blogging friends, live and in person. Watching both kids move farther away from home. Old age claiming my faithful dog Bear.
Combing through my photo archives, I've once again compiled a year-end post featuring a favorite image from each month of 2016. I find it very satisfying to look back at all the moments captured, relive the fun and the fascinating, and realize how much I've accomplished in 365 days.
Of all the articles I create for my blog, the annual "year in photos" post is by far my very favorite. I hope it's become yours too.
|Alpenglow on Mt Hood|
Oh Mt Hood....my favorite alpine playground. Skiing down her slopes one late winter afternoon, I was lucky enough to witness this fantastic pink alpenglow blanketing the summit.
|My skiing buds and I on a wet, snowy day|
Ski bus days are the best days! Whatever the weather, my die-hard ski buddy friends don't let a little wet snowstorm stop our fun.
For some reason I don't have a lot of images from the month of March (too busy skiing and not taking many photos, I guess). But our tulips bloomed early, and one morning I grabbed some fantastic shots of their rain-speckled petals.
|Sunset on Bandon Beach|
In September 2015, I made a swing through the southern Oregon coast and fell in love with the charming town of Bandon. Not having much time to explore, I booked a return visit for April. I spent a most excellent three days roaming this wonderful area, culminating with a capture of this stunning ocean sunset.
|Soggy Hardy Ridge|
Wet weather kept me cooped up inside until I finally said "what the heck" and hiked in the rain anyway. A trek up the blustery Hardy Ridge trail tested my resolve (and my raingear!), but I was handsomely rewarded with some of my best spring wildflower images.
|Cody's priestly ordination|
In June my son Cody realized a goal he's worked and studied 6 long years for, ordination to the priesthood. A bittersweet moment - as a mom I'm so proud of Cody's accomplishment, and his happiness fills my heart. But celebrating milestones always tugs at the heartstrings. It's always a tiny bit sad to see your babies grow up and move far away.
|Tipsoo Lake and Mt Rainier|
Mt Rainier National Park is the closest National Park to Portland, but for some reason I hadn't visited since the 90s. A late July weekend trip changed all that. I was blown away by the fantastic scenery and plethora of hiking trails. I'll certainly be back for more in 2017.
|Iconic McNeil Point Shelter|
In August the Cascade's high mountain meadows are bursting with wildflowers. Despite the blazing hot August weather, I forced myself to get out and visit as many as possible. So many great hikes, it was hard to choose a favorite. But McNeil Point is always a classic trek, and this shot of it's iconic rock shelter finally won my vote.
|No Name Lake|
Two years ago, while hiking into Broken Top Mountain's crater, my brother mentioned existence of an unnamed glacial lake on the peak's north side. Several spectacular images of this lake on social media sparked my interest, and in late September I finally visited the elusive "No Name Lake" for myself.
Fall is hands-down my favorite hiking season. Not only do I enjoy the cooler temperatures, brilliant autumn colors provide lots of material for my camera's memory card. Again, there were so many great images to choose from, but the solo hike I made on Mt St Helens Coldwater Trail (where I unwittingly encountered an ultrarunning race) was by far the most spectacular.
Waterfalls and autumn colors make the best photographs. And when the leaves turn, I have a long-standing tradition of touring the Columbia River Gorge in search of both. Despite the rainy autumn weather I managed to fit in this annual trip, and was richly rewarded for my efforts.
|Horsetail Falls sporting it's winter white|
Long-time blog followers know how much I love to photograph waterfalls. So when a mid-December cold snap turned the Gorge cascades icy, I grabbed for my camera. I think Mother Nature does a mighty fine job of transforming moving water into a breathtaking winter wonderland.
Thanks to all of you for visiting, following, and commenting on my humble blog. It's always gratifying to know someone out there actually reads what I post. I love the online friendships I've established (blogging buddies are the best!) and it was truly wonderful to meet some of you in person this past summer. Here's to another year of happy trails and beautiful places.
Wishing everyone a safe, prosperous, and peaceful 2017!
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