Memorable Moments of 2016

As terrible as 2016 was for the world, I had a good time. A look back at my photos from the year tells an interesting and almost chaotic story. Here are the most unusual, exciting, and memorable moments from my 2016.

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The night of New Year’s Eve 2015-2016 also featured a white elephant gift exchange in which I got a literal white elephant.

The walkways in my town turn bright green after extended periods of wet weather, even in the middle of winter.

No comment.

I got my new truck in March, and have loved it ever since.

I got my new truck in March, and have loved it ever since.

I was in the right place in the right time, and captured one of my favorite pictures of the year from a viewpoint a couple miles from my childhood home.

I was in the right place at the right time, and captured one of my favorite pictures of the year from a viewpoint a couple miles south of my childhood home.

My first trip to Seattle this year was in April. I visited an awesome lakeside park with a couple good friends.

My first trip to Seattle this year was in April. I visited an awesome lakeside park with a couple good friends.

I also checked out the Emerald City ComiCon, which had an overwhelming number of awesome vendors and an even more overwhelming number of people.

I also checked out the Emerald City Comicon, which had an overwhelming number of awesome vendors and an even more overwhelming number of people.

My main reason for being at the comicon was to meet Nathan Fillion, get a picture, and have my tenth anniversary Firefly poster signed.

My main reason for attending the comicon was to meet Nathan Fillion, get a picture, and have my tenth anniversary Firefly poster signed.

My first big hike of the year was the spectacular Dog Mountain trail.

My first big hike of the year was the spectacular Dog Mountain trail.

I collected stickerless Rubik's Cubes from 2x2 to 7x7 and learned how to solve them.

I collected stickerless Rubik’s Cubes from 2×2 to 7×7 and learned how to solve them.

While scouting locations for a short movie, I stood at the top of a cliff and my brother took a picture from across the gully.

While scouting locations for a short movie, I stood at the top of a cliff and my brother took a picture from across the gully.

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One of my favorite big hikes in this area is Table Mountain, and my brother dangled his legs over the 1,500 foot cliff at the top when we climbed it this year. It was almost too much for even him. Normally he’s not afraid of heights at all.

NOPE

NOPE

The first big highlight of my road trip in June was Arches National Park.

The first big highlight of my road trip in June was Arches National Park.

Standing on the highest rock on Mount Evans was one of my top favorite moments of the trip.

Driving up Mount Evans and standing on the highest rock at the summit was one of my favorite parts of the trip.

The Buckhorn Exchange in Denver was possibly the most delicious and satisfying meal of the entire trip. I also sat next to a very interesting old man at the bar. Read all about it here.

Buckhorn Exchange in Denver served me possibly the most delicious and satisfying meal of the entire trip. I also sat next to a very interesting old man at the bar. Read all about it here.

A small cafe in New Orleans provided another very memorable meal.

A small cafe in New Orleans provided another memorable meal.

I got my feet in the Gulf of Mexico for the first time at Pensacola Beach, Florida.

I got my feet in the Gulf of Mexico for the first time at Pensacola Beach, Florida.

I climbed on top of Liberty University, photographed security cameras, and went behind the stage of Jerry Falwell's church. Don't ask how.

I climbed on top of Liberty University, photographed security cameras from behind, and explored Jerry Falwell’s church in the middle of the night. Don’t ask how.

The Smithsonian was another of my favorite destinations. Especially the Apollo capsule.

The Smithsonian was another of my favorite destinations. Especially the Apollo capsule.

The sunrise over Brooklyn that I saw from the Staten Island Ferry was unexpectedly awesome.

The sunrise over Brooklyn that I saw from the Staten Island Ferry was unexpectedly awesome.

Sometimes I have a different perspective, on things like brass bull testicles.

Sometimes I have a different perspective on things, like bronze bull testicles.

My direct paternal ancestor immigrated to America, and landed on Ellis Island on 1904, according to records I found online.

My direct paternal ancestor immigrated to America, and arrived at Ellis Island in 1904, according to records I found online. I visited the island 112 years later.

I went swimming in Jackson Lake in the shadow of the Grand Tetons.

During an evening that has a good shot at winning Best Evening of the Year, I went swimming in Jackson Lake in the shadow of the Grand Tetons and then lay on the shore as the sun set, with no other humans in sight or earshot.

The grand finale to my road trip was a two-hour jet boat ride on the Snake River through Hells Canyon. I highly recommend it.

The grand finale to my road trip was a two-hour jet boat ride on the Snake River through Hells Canyon. I highly recommend it for anyone in or visiting the northwestern states.

Several times in the summer I went kayaking in nearby lakes with friends and brothers.

Several times during the summer I went kayaking in nearby lakes with friends and brothers.

I frequently visited the former island about a quarter mile from my house, which has spectacular views in every direction.

I frequently visited the former island about a quarter mile from my house, which has spectacular views in every direction.

I successfully recovered a four millimeter bead of gold from about 75 sticks of old RAM, using hydrochloric acid, hydrogen peroxide, and a giant hydrogen torch at work. You'll be hearing more about this and related adventures in a future episode of Thing Creation.

I successfully recovered a four millimeter bead of gold from about 75 sticks of old RAM, using hydrochloric acid and hydrogen peroxide to remove it and the giant hydrogen torch at work to melt it down. You’ll be hearing more about this and related adventures in a future episode of Thing Creation.

I filmed a short movie in early August with a few of my siblings and a couple friends. We spent most of our time at the Deschutes River, a beautiful place about 90 miles to the east of me.

I filmed a short movie in early August with a few of my siblings and a couple friends. We spent most of our time at the Deschutes River, a beautiful place about 90 miles east of my town.

At the end of the final day of filming, I captured a vivid rainbow from my porch.

At the end of the final day of filming, I captured a vivid rainbow from my porch as I relaxed.

My favorite brewery started bottling my favorite beer.

My favorite brewery started bottling my favorite beer.

At the beginning of summer I traded my old laptop for a charcoal smoker, and proceeded to make a lot of very delicious smoked foods all summer.

At the beginning of summer I traded my old laptop for a charcoal smoker, and then I proceeded to make a lot of delicious barbecued meat.

I acquired a crazy little Subaru Justy, one of very few three cylinder 4wd hatchbacks that have ever existed. It will be properly introduced along with repair updates in a future article.

I acquired a crazy little Subaru Justy with minor front end damage. The Justy is one of very few three cylinder 4wd hatchbacks that have ever existed. It will be properly introduced along with repair updates in a future article.

One day there was a spectacular sunset and I ran around the house taking many pictures.

One day there was a spectacular sunset and I ran around the house taking many pictures.

For my 25th birthday, I bought myself a one-of-a-kind handmade ring containing silver, copper, and gold.

For my 25th birthday, I bought myself a one-of-a-kind handmade ring made of silver and copper with about a gram of gold nuggets.

After taking advantage of an offer of free photo prints, I strung together pictures of all 29 vehicles I've owned so far and put them on my wall.

After taking advantage of an offer for free photo prints, I strung together pictures of all 29 vehicles I’ve owned so far and put them on my wall. I think I need a 30th to round out the collection, and I think it should be yellow.

I tried gold panning, but haven't found anything yet. I did come home with a bit of black sand, which is so magnetic a neodymium magnet could hold up a vial of it through my fingers.

I tried gold panning, but haven’t found anything yet. I did come home with a bit of black sand, which is so magnetic a neodymium magnet could hold up a vial of it through my fingers.

During another trip to Seattle, I sat on a throne in the EMP Museum, bought a meteorite and a Star Wars poster at the Pike Place Market, and ate chocolate covered cherries.

During another trip to Seattle, I sat on a throne in the EMP Museum, bought a meteorite and a Star Wars poster at the Pike Place Market, and ate chocolate covered cherries.

For Thanksgiving this year I perfected my pecan pie recipe. An entry in my High Cooking series will eventually be devoted to this wonderful dessert.

For Thanksgiving this year I perfected my pecan pie recipe. An entry in my High Cooking series will eventually be devoted to this wonderful dessert.

I got a lot of balls. This isn't even all of them.

I got a lot of balls. This isn’t even all of them.

I fixed my truck's four wheel drive a day before the snow hit. The problem was just a $14 switch on the transfer case.

I fixed my truck’s four wheel drive a day before the snow hit. The problem was just a $14 switch on the transfer case.

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