If imitation is the sincerest form of flattery, photography is a close second. And with hikers, bikers and travelers of all kinds equipped with everything from phone cameras to helmet cams to the slickest new Nikons and Canons, the Northwest gets plenty of image-capturing adoration.

This year was another strong one for photography by Seattle Times readers, who submitted hundreds of entries throughout the year to our Reader’s Lens feature. At year’s end, we’ve chosen 10 favorites to be our Reader Photos of the Year for 2012.

The grand prize — a $250 gift card from Kenmore Camera — goes to Jessica Newley, of Bellingham, for her photo, seen here, of coho salmon near the end of their spawning journey.

Judging was by Angela Gottschalk, Seattle Times photo editor; photo staffer Katie Greene, who critiques the weekly choices; and Brian J. Cantwell, Seattle Times Outdoors editor.

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Thanks to all who sent in so many images reflecting the places to see and things to do around the Northwest. Please keep sharing your best recent photos of our region (see seattletimes.com/northwestphotos) and maybe you’ll be our winner next year.