After months of pandemic-focus on things that are most necessary, it felt good to pare down even more. One pants, one shirt, one jacket, one hat, one book, just enough food, a stove, a sleeping bag.

Because the less we have, the farther we go and the more we notice. There’s a spontaneous swim at 8,500 feet. Morning oatmeal above timberline. Explosions of glacier lily and paintbrush. Wild windy nights, yellow moon illuminating pink heather. Elk tracks criss-crossing the snowpack.

The wonders that happen when we remember to pack light. (Especially when it comes to writing.)