I flew into LAX a couple of days ago and Butters, who I hiked with for a while last year, picked me up from the airport. Since then, we’ve been taking a very convoluted route to Tahoe. We stopped off a couple of places and I’ve been taking very subpar photos out the window. Part of me wishes I would’ve brought my nice camera. But then I remember that would add 2lbs to my pack… Subpar pictures it is.

Everything is different out west and I find myself in a thru hiking mentality already. I’m still stressed and anxious because my hike hasn’t started yet, but out here I live every moment of every day and I appreciate that aspect the most.

I start in a few days. It’s always a strange sensation before you start a long hike, you question everything. Will I have the same issues as last year? Did I save enough? Am I strong enough? They cycle through my brain on repeat. I don’t have a definitive answer to any of those questions. I do, however, desperately want to finish this hike. There are a million different experiences I’m about to have and that’s really the most important part.