Brodie Bancker, 3, of Edwards helps shovel fresh snow during an April storm in Edwards. The storm dropped around a foot of snow in the upper valley. Chris Dillmann/Vail Daily
The year 2022 has come and gone. It was a year full of excitement, and always a little drama, in our little corner of the world. As the photographer for the Vail Daily, what I noticed about the past year were a few things.
First was the return to a much more normal world compared to the past couple of years. Events came back, masks went away and spaces were filled to full capacity. This is not only great for locals and tourists, but also for me, who relishes taking photos at such cool events — big and small.
Another major theme throughout the year was the weather. Let’s be honest, it always is, but this I can say and I’m sure most would agree: it was a positive thing this year. We had a wet summer with absolutely no fires or even fire bans. Not one fire ban, incredible! This led to a late and stunning fall which transitioned into a great start to the winter. So much so that Vail and Beaver Creek were able to open with great conditions. The great conditions haven’t stopped either, so keep it coming.
One thing that was very cool to experience was President Joe Biden coming to Camp Hale. No matter one’s political beliefs, anytime a sitting president comes to Eagle County, that’s a pretty big deal. Being able to photograph a president, especially in a place as beautiful and steeped in history as Camp Hale, is a huge honor.
Housing has, continues, and will always be a hot topic here in our valley. We all know space is limited and people want to be here. The topic doesn’t always make for award-winning photos, but is something we will always be there to cover.
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The midterm election was a massive one, and as a photographer, I’m always grateful to get a behind-the-scenes look at how the ballots go from drop-off locations and polling places to the Eagle County building where they are counted.
All in all, it was a good year. The two biggest things, again, that stood out to me were a sense of normalcy returning and the weather. I’m sure I missed some photos that could have been added to the collection and had some that weren’t groundbreaking but added to the notable news stories of the year.
I hope you enjoy a look back at the year that was.
President Joe Biden signs a declaration Wednesday, Oct. 12, 2022, creating the Camp Hale-Continental Divide National Monument at Camp Hale. The monument will honor the legacy of the 10th Mountain Division soldiers who trained there before fighting in Italy in World War II. Chris Dillmann/Vail Daily
Vail Ski and Snowboard Academy graduates walk through the snow into their commencement Friday, May 20, 2022, at 4 Eagle Ranch in Wolcott. The graduation was held indoors due to the snow. Chris Dillmann/Vail Daily
Railroad Earth performs in June during the second night of of the Eagle Block Party in downtown Eagle. Chris Dillmann/Vail Daily
Bart Harst and Ernestine (Tenie) Chicoine sort ballots on Nov. 8, 2022, at the Eagle County building in Eagle. The two have long worked to help count ballots on Election Day. Chris Dillmann/Vail Daily
People speak Tuesday, May 3, 2022, at the Vail Town Council meeting in Vail. The fate of the parcel in East Vail pertaining to employee housing and bighorn sheep brought out the large, standing-room-only crowd. Chris Dillmann/Vail Daily
USDA Secretary Thomas Vilsack, U.S. Sens. Michael Bennet, John Hickenlooper, and Colorado Gov. Jared Polis speak to the media Tuesday, Aug. 16, 2022, during a visit to Camp Hale near Red Cliff. Just two months later, all four men were back at Camp Hale for the dedication of the World War II training site as the country’s newest national monument. Chris Dillmann/Vail Daily
The Mountain Top Express Lift takes skiers and snowboarders up to the top of Vail Mountain Friday, Nov. 11, 2022. The resort opened with more than 100 acres of skiable terrain. Chris Dillmann/Vail Daily
The sun peaks through the clouds splashing on the frosted pine trees and aspens with fresh leaves after a late May snow in Avon. Upper elevations measured around a foot, with up to more than 20 inches to the east. Chris Dillmann/Vail Daily
Austria’s Matthias Mayer leans into one of the final turns of his downhill practice run Thursday, Dec. 1, in preparation for the Birds of Prey World Cup races in Beaver Creek. Chris Dillmann/Vail Daily
Camp Hale is seen from an ECO Flight plane Tuesday, Oct. 11, 2022. A day later, President Joe Biden traveled to the former World War II training site to dedicate the Camp Hale-Continental Divide National Monument, a first for his administration. Chris Dillmann/Vail Daily
Cynthia Johnson launches in the snow during the first day of a multi-day storm in Vail. Chris Dillmann/Vail Daily
New snow coats the Gore Range with glowing aspens as fall foliage peaks in Vail in early October. Chris Dillmann/Vail Daily
Daxton Ryan, 9, helps Colorado Gov. Jared Polis sign the Use of Local Lodging Tax Revenue Bill into effect Thursday, March 31, 2022, at Miller Ranch in Edwards. The bill will generate tax money through lodging revenue to help with affordable housing in Colorado. Chris Dillmann/Vail Daily
The Limón Dance Company performs Friday, July 29, 2022, on the opening night of the annual Vail Dance Festival at the Gerald R. Ford Amphitheater in Vail. Chris Dillmann/Vail Daily
Protesters hold signs for women’s rights Saturday, May 14, 2022, during a rally at the main roundabout in Edwards. Chris Dillmann/Vail Daily
Jeeps and crowds help make up the Vail America Days parade Monday, July 4, in Vail. Thousands descended on Vail for the parade. Chris Dillmann/Vail Daily
Beaver Creek Chief Operating Officer Nadia Guerriero dedicates the new McCoy Express Lift on Monday, January 10, 2022, before cutting the ribbon at the official dedication event of the McCoy Park downhill skiing expansion at Beaver Creek. The new area adds 250 acres of skiable terrain to the resort. Chris Dillmann/Vail Daily
President Joe Biden speaks Wednesday, Oct. 12, 2022, at the Camp Hale-Continental Divide National Monument signing ceremony. The monument honors the legacy of the 10th Mountain Division soldiers who trained there to fight in Italy in World War II. Chris Dillmann/Vail Daily
Snow coats the peaks of the Gore Range in late summer in Vail. Wet weather brought snow to the upper elevations of the state. Chris Dillmann/Vail Daily
Dane Jackson digs deep in the rapids of Homestake Creek during the Tincup Steep Creek Championship for the GoPro Mountain Games in June in Red Cliff. The event features the best kayakers in the world. Chris Dillmann/Vail Daily
A double rainbow appears as a summer storm clears in Avon. The afternoon brought heavy rain, lightning and a rainbow that lasted more than 30 minutes. Chris Dillmann/Vail Daily
The Blood Moon total lunar eclipse hangs in the sky in November in remote Eagle County. Chris Dillmann/Vail Daily
Sid Dixon of Denver makes fresh turns in Blue Sky Basin on Sunday, Jan. 8, 2022, in Vail after the area opened for the season. Chris Dillmann/Vail Daily
The sun sets over Solaris in Vail in February. Chris Dillmann/Vail Daily
Stilted performers greet kids during the annual Avon Salute to the USA event Sunday, July 3, 2022, in Avon. Chris Dillmann/Vail Daily
Rivals Battle Mountain and Eagle Valley face off Friday, Sept. 30, 2022, in Gypsum. Eagle Valley defeated Battle Mountain 54-6 on a rainy Friday night to claim its first win of the season. Chris Dillmann/Vail Daily
Team Ski or Die with the 157/132 Colorado National Guard begins the repel section of the Troopers Cup Race up Pepi’s Face for Vail Legacy Days in February. The race encompasses climbing, repelling, skiing and skinning. Chris Dillmann/Vail Daily
Thievery Corporation headlines the first night of the Eagle Block Party Friday, June 3, 2022, in Eagle. The two-day event features multiple stages of live music, art and food vendors. Chris Dillmann/Vail Daily
Snow falls heavily Thursday in Vail Village. Heavy snow moved through the area in the afternoon hours. Chris Dillmann/Vail Daily
Shelby Lewis, owner of Eat Dank Food, serves up a duck birria taco with Oaxaca cheese, guajilo jus, micro cilantro, white onion on a corn tortilla during the Mountain Top Tasting for Taste of Vail Friday, April 8, 2022, in Vail. Eat Dank Food is a local catering and private chef service in the Vail Valley. Chris Dillmann/Vail Daily
Boaters make their way down the Colorado River in April near State Bridge. Chris Dillmann/Vail Daily
Snowcats push snow around in November at the base of Beaver Creek. Chris Dillmann/Vail Daily
Carter Sandberg of Kaycee, Wyoming, competes in the saddle bronc competition Saturday, July 30, 2022, during the last night of the Eagle County Fair and Rodeo in Eagle. Chris Dillmann/Vail Daily