Mike wakes up early in the morning, as usual. By 5:30 AM he can detect a faint hint of light in the eastern sky, but it’s not until 6:15-6:30 that it’s light enough to think about getting up.
He fusses around in the tent, reaching down for his Marmot DriClime jacket, putting it on, then gets the Patagonia MicroPuff outer jacket out of its stuff sack where it had served as a pillow and puts it on as well.
After wrestling into his pants and socks, he rotates around inside the tent, reaches over and unzips the tent door and, with some difficulty, stands up. His boots are now in front of him on the ground, ready for him to shove first one foot, then the other, into them.
All right! Now he can stagger around the campsite! If he could only reach down to tie his bootlaces! Maybe in a little while . . .
(Later). 7:18 AM. Sunrise. The sun immediately takes the chill out of the air, so Mike takes off his outer jacket and drapes it over the tent fly. Water is boiled: first coffee, then cocoa are made. After a while he takes a walk down to the lake to contemplate his shadow in the ripples.
Photos: Cocoa & Tent—Sierra Nevada, 2009; Shadow, Woodchuck Lake—Sierra Nevada, 2009