This weekend I went on my first backpacking trek of the year since my trip to Yosemite in the spring. A dozen other guys and I headed to the Catskills on Saturday for the bachelor party of my friend Vlad, who may be familiar from my Yosemite photos. The weather was beautiful on Saturday, with sunshine alternating with ethereal fog, the result of temperature inversion, as a fellow hiker explained to us. We reached Echo Lake, our destination, late in the day, and quickly made camp before celebrating with food, jokes, hot chocolate cigars, and a dozen toasts. On Sunday morning, we awoke to the rain, which continued throughout our entire hike back out to the trailhead, but no matter -- a wonderful time was had by all. Congrats, Vlad! Looking forward to celebrating with you next month.