A multi-day trip to Iona and the Ross of Mull was blessed with the most tremendous quality of light - the combination of brilliant sunshine and blue sky set off the pink granite, white sands and aquamarine sea for which the area is known.
Gorgeous beaches, stunning primary colours, a rich history and one of the best possible sea kayaking locations.......
...... and have I mentioned the colours?!
We were to experience colour in a different palette on another multi-day trip, a kaleidoscope of warm autumn shades - this one I'm still to write up on the blog. The trip included one of the most perfect evenings imaginable; our friend Lorna put all our thoughts into a single quiet phrase - "Just look around us........this is the best place in the world..."
In the interests of balance, I've been out in some truly elemental weather too - rain of impressive intensity on the Moray Firth and a trip on Kintyre with Douglas which had just about everything in terms of weather plus an adrenaline-inducing crossing.....
There have been good days on the hill too, although perhaps not as many as I'd have liked - something to correct in 2017.
At a shade over 500 metres high, it isn't the biggest hill, but quite an undertaking if you happen to be at Primary School! A day climbing Bennachie in the company of 55 small hillwalkers was one of the most enjoyable days I've spent on any hill.
But, if pushed for the single trip which is a stand-out of 2016 it has to be the first multi-day trip of the year.....
Over four days Mike, Douglas and I paddled around and took our boats over the island of Jura. Spectacularly wild coasts, fast tidal streams, bothy nights and brilliant weather; this trip was a long-held ambition and it totally exceeded the high hopes I had.
It also included one of the most striking landscapes anywhere in Britain - and one that few people even know about - just a remarkable trip.
A huge and heartfelt thank you to everyone with whom I've enjoyed the outdoors in 2016 - from struggles in tough conditions to nights around the fire - the experiences are all the better for sharing with friends - Slainte Mhath and a very happy New Year!