Julia and I arrived in Lone Pine at 1:30 AM on July 8. We had originally planned to arrive much earlier, but had our work schedules change at the last minute. This didn’t allow us to leave Southern California until 10:30 PM. The marquee for the Dow Villa Motel drew us in from the long drive on highway 395, and we quickly checked in and proceeded to our room. Before attempting to go to sleep, we went through our packs one last time to ensure we had all of our gear ready for the 225 mile trek that stood before us.