One year of adventure!

It's hard to believe, but for nearly a year now I have been blogging here. When I think about the things I have committed myself to for a year or more (relationships and passions aside), that list is extremely short. And that makes sense, I suppose. My life has always been geared towards being in nature and taking photographs. There have been no other hobbies that rival either of those. Fitness is huge, but I consider that a way to nature, and not much else. Being in great physical shape allows me to see and do everything I can dream up. It also keeps my brain working, which is pretty key to photography and not falling off of cliffs.

While most years have been gratifying with large amounts of time spent on adventures, none have come even close to October 2015-October 2016. The past 12 months have been a nonstop whirlwind of packing and unpacking and planning and editing. Constant motion in one way or another. I owe this to my husband. The man who shares all of my passions and gladly agrees to partake in any exploration I come up with. And hey- he comes up with a lot of the plans too :) Having a partner in this type of lifestyle is key. And I fall in love with him more everyday, after every hike, every fall and every smile. To support this life we have created, we downsized considerably. From a four bedroom house to a one bedroom apartment. It's mainly a place to keep our gear and create food. But we fit in there too. Us and our five bikes, three tents, six sleeping bags, four backpacks and a crash pad. It's not just home. It's inspiration that surrounds us.

 My partner in all things, Jon. We have experienced so much together and I cannot wait to see where life take us. He is my husband, best friend, mountaineering partner and so much more. The things we have accomplished in our short time together have been vast and gorgeous. I hope that everyone in the world has the opportunity to find someone who melts them the way he does me. My constant reminder to never settle for anything in life.

My partner in all things, Jon. We have experienced so much together and I cannot wait to see where life take us. He is my husband, best friend, mountaineering partner and so much more. The things we have accomplished in our short time together have been vast and gorgeous. I hope that everyone in the world has the opportunity to find someone who melts them the way he does me. My constant reminder to never settle for anything in life.

In the next year we plan to up our level of extreme-condition camping and backpacking. We have a couple trips in the works and could not be more excited about them. Winter for us is a time of love, peace, solitude and wonder. And gearing up for the cold season of 2016/17 has been a process. But we're confident in what we have and what we plan to do. Mountaineering conditioning has been an important part of the process and so much fun. It's been a good time using these warmer months to experiment with various foods and drink choices, so that when the ground begins to freeze and the calorie needs rise, our nutrition will be taken care of. I like to think of this past year as a glorious and beautiful experiment in what could happen. And now moving forward, we get to put everything we learned into practice. There are many boundaries to push and sights to see.

To celebrate a year of blogging here, I would like to share a few of my favorite photographs and tell you about them. So that's what the rest of this is about. Please, I urge you, immerse yourself into our great wild. Take care of it and treasure it. Preserve, conserve and learn. You will become a happier and more developed human. Strong, in love with your world and compassionate to it. Go play!

 This photo was taken on the SHT. It was the morning after Jon and I had camped together for the very first time. It was waking up in a wonderland of glitter and fresh air. A truly life changing time. I think we both knew that our lives were going to be different from that point forward. We had met only a short time prior and had only ever been on two dates. It was very cold out and we couldn't get a fire going to stay warm. I'm fairly certain we fell in love here.

This photo was taken on the SHT. It was the morning after Jon and I had camped together for the very first time. It was waking up in a wonderland of glitter and fresh air. A truly life changing time. I think we both knew that our lives were going to be different from that point forward. We had met only a short time prior and had only ever been on two dates. It was very cold out and we couldn't get a fire going to stay warm. I'm fairly certain we fell in love here.

 Here is Jon the day after we were married. We were near the boulder field of Longs Peak and very bad weather was rolling in. We were lucky to get to the point we got to- when we descended, the rangers were turning people away from the trail because of poor weather conditions.

Here is Jon the day after we were married. We were near the boulder field of Longs Peak and very bad weather was rolling in. We were lucky to get to the point we got to- when we descended, the rangers were turning people away from the trail because of poor weather conditions.

 This is a self portrait from a few months ago. Life was in a bit of upheaval and I was dealing with a lot of bad feelings towards many things. We ran away for a quick weekend to recharge and have some alone time. I don't think Jon had woken up when I took this. A lot of times in the morning I wake up and walk alone for an hour or so. I love this photo because while it's somewhat sad, it perfectly depicts what I was going through mentally. And it was healing to have taken it.

This is a self portrait from a few months ago. Life was in a bit of upheaval and I was dealing with a lot of bad feelings towards many things. We ran away for a quick weekend to recharge and have some alone time. I don't think Jon had woken up when I took this. A lot of times in the morning I wake up and walk alone for an hour or so. I love this photo because while it's somewhat sad, it perfectly depicts what I was going through mentally. And it was healing to have taken it.

 This is in Colorado during a very early morning hike. I had not met Jon yet and didn't have this blog quite yet. I would say this is the morning I decided to change my life and commit to something different. I remember staring up at the mountains and thinking "what in the fuck are you doing with your life? Why is this not everything? Why are you settling?" Settling for so many things. When I returned I made many huge changes. I don't think this a place I will ever return to because of how important it was in my life.

This is in Colorado during a very early morning hike. I had not met Jon yet and didn't have this blog quite yet. I would say this is the morning I decided to change my life and commit to something different. I remember staring up at the mountains and thinking "what in the fuck are you doing with your life? Why is this not everything? Why are you settling?" Settling for so many things. When I returned I made many huge changes. I don't think this a place I will ever return to because of how important it was in my life.

 A Black Hills sunset. We weathered a large storm just an hour or two before where I had nearly been struck by lightening running to the safety of our unpitched tent.

A Black Hills sunset. We weathered a large storm just an hour or two before where I had nearly been struck by lightening running to the safety of our unpitched tent.

 I don't know where to start with this one... This was taken in Idaho at City of Rock. I was dealing with so many emotions regarding who I was and who I wanted to be. This was a climbing trip and I felt very lonely and uncomfortable during certain parts of it. I loved everything around me, but felt very lonely. Jon was bikepacking and I was worried about his safety being out all alone. I had a lot of solitude in the mornings here, and appreciated the colors of the rising sun immensely.

I don't know where to start with this one... This was taken in Idaho at City of Rock. I was dealing with so many emotions regarding who I was and who I wanted to be. This was a climbing trip and I felt very lonely and uncomfortable during certain parts of it. I loved everything around me, but felt very lonely. Jon was bikepacking and I was worried about his safety being out all alone. I had a lot of solitude in the mornings here, and appreciated the colors of the rising sun immensely.

 Not the best photo- not even close! But for all the time I spend in the wild, this is the only moose I have ever seen! It was super exciting.

Not the best photo- not even close! But for all the time I spend in the wild, this is the only moose I have ever seen! It was super exciting.

 Sunrise on Chasm Lake. It was beautiful and I felt so small. It was one of the most profound times where I felt small. Because I felt REALLY small.

Sunrise on Chasm Lake. It was beautiful and I felt so small. It was one of the most profound times where I felt small. Because I felt REALLY small.

 Waking up to this sunrise in North Dakota was enchanting. I think Jon would agree that the night before is when we both knew we were going to be married. It was the morning after Summer Solstice and the sky was just perfect. We backpacked out of there with orange and pink lighting the way. No picture exists of him, but there was one buffalo grazing on our way out. We had to sneak past him in complete silence. He was huge and magnificent.

Waking up to this sunrise in North Dakota was enchanting. I think Jon would agree that the night before is when we both knew we were going to be married. It was the morning after Summer Solstice and the sky was just perfect. We backpacked out of there with orange and pink lighting the way. No picture exists of him, but there was one buffalo grazing on our way out. We had to sneak past him in complete silence. He was huge and magnificent.

 Just the perfect moment in time captured. This was in North Dakota. I like this photo so much, but there really is not any good story behind it. We had just arrived at our car and this deer was watching us.

Just the perfect moment in time captured. This was in North Dakota. I like this photo so much, but there really is not any good story behind it. We had just arrived at our car and this deer was watching us.

 This was right before one huge storm. And right before one of the most scary times I have ever had. Back country camping in the Badlands. I never wanted to stop taking photos and it was the first and only time in my life that I had to really truly choose between amazing pictures or safety. I chose a little of both for a time, but safety in the end.

This was right before one huge storm. And right before one of the most scary times I have ever had. Back country camping in the Badlands. I never wanted to stop taking photos and it was the first and only time in my life that I had to really truly choose between amazing pictures or safety. I chose a little of both for a time, but safety in the end.

 A winter camp. Very peaceful on Lake Superior. I do believe this was taken from right outside our tent. Sunrise is my favorite time of day.

A winter camp. Very peaceful on Lake Superior. I do believe this was taken from right outside our tent. Sunrise is my favorite time of day.

 The air was crisp and the mountains were tall. We could not believe how gorgeous this landscape was.

The air was crisp and the mountains were tall. We could not believe how gorgeous this landscape was.

 This was in the BWCAW of northern MN. We were backpacking to Eagle Mountain to camp and experienced a white out, wolves playing and the joys of truly deep snow. It was a magical trip.

This was in the BWCAW of northern MN. We were backpacking to Eagle Mountain to camp and experienced a white out, wolves playing and the joys of truly deep snow. It was a magical trip.

 A sunrise in Yellowstone. Not much else to say. We woke up super early to drive to the Tetons and pulled over to see this. Stillness.

A sunrise in Yellowstone. Not much else to say. We woke up super early to drive to the Tetons and pulled over to see this. Stillness.

 This is one of my all time favorite photos that I've ever taken. I am in love with it. We were on the North Country Trail. There were massive winds and the weather was questionable, but the water was so peaceful and the views were mind blowing.

This is one of my all time favorite photos that I've ever taken. I am in love with it. We were on the North Country Trail. There were massive winds and the weather was questionable, but the water was so peaceful and the views were mind blowing.

 The parts of backpacking you don't typically see- road travel :) This was a climbing trip and I had the crash pad. Jon had a backpack filled with all of the gear for us both. It believe it weighed in around 80lbs.

The parts of backpacking you don't typically see- road travel :) This was a climbing trip and I had the crash pad. Jon had a backpack filled with all of the gear for us both. It believe it weighed in around 80lbs.

 The sunrise, a beaver and me. That is all. That is everything.

The sunrise, a beaver and me. That is all. That is everything.

 My muse. This photo makes me laugh and makes me so happy.

My muse. This photo makes me laugh and makes me so happy.

"The clearest way into the Universe is through a forest wilderness."