I'm rather short compared to most people in my life. At 5'2", I know the common kitchen stool as a necessary tool in reaching at least 50 percent of the shelves rather than a place to sit.
And while I've become quite familiar with the feeling of being small in stature relative to the spaces around me, I could never have anticipated the magnitude with which this feeling would be magnified when I took my first trip to the Pacific Northwest.
For two weeks this fall, my partner Toby and I explored around Washington and Oregon in a little red Kia Rio that held it's own against the forest service roads of the Rogue-River Siskiyou National Forest, a snow-covered Crater Lake National Park and pretty much every element mother nature had to throw at us.
It was an absolute blast. I literally had to be forced into an Uber ride to the airport I wanted to stay so badly. And this adventure took me to some of the most beautiful places I've ever been.
We stayed in Forest Service Fire Towers all along the way, which put you at the highest peaks in the area and offer absolutely breathtaking views of the region. Literally waking up above the clouds every morning and watching weather systems roll in and out of the valleys beneath us - it was a photographer's (this photographer's) dream.
Check out some photos from the trip here. And, Toby shared more about the trip and a guide for over at his site, Teerritory.com, if you're interested in doing this yourself (which we'll recommend at every opportunity).
Here's to a fabulous and fascinating 2017, with plenty of days spent with our heads in the clouds.