Mother Nature made her mark again this year and did so, unfortunately,
in the most extreme ways: hellish heat, drought, superstorms and other
wild weather events.
Click image to see more wildfire devastation
Hurricane Isaac made landfall on Aug. 28 near the mouth of the Mississippi River. (Mario Tama/Getty Images)
Heavy, wet snow and swirling winds caused by superstorm Sandy brought blizzard conditions to West Virginia and some neighboring Appalachian states. (Jeff Swensen/Getty Images)
Why Hurricane Season Peaks Today
A NASA satellite caught this image of Tropical Storm Leslie as it passed over Bermuda on Sept. 9, 2012.
Darren Becker sifts through arid topsoil under a ruined crop on the family farm on August 24, 2012 in Logan, Kansas. Like many Kansas farmers who's profits have been wiped out by the record drought, the Beckers are working hard to hang on to their farm, which has been in their family for five generations. Most of Kansas is still in extreme or exceptional drought, despite recent lower temperatures and thunderstorms, according to the University of Nebraska's Drought Monitor. The record-breaking drought, which has affected more than half of the continental United States, is expected to drive up food prices by 2013 due to lower crop harvests and the adverse effect on the nation's cattle industry. (Photo by John Moore/Getty Images)
Scorching heat waves swept across the U.S., topping records and sending many to beaches for a reprieve. The U.N.'s World Meteorological Organization concluded 2012 will be one of the warmest years on record. (Mario Tama/Getty Images)