We left Ohio yesterday, immediately after class. Our layover in Atlanta was just long enough to get some food before we got on our final flight. As soon as the plane doors opened at Tucson, I felt my lips start to chap. My most distinct memory from my Arizona visit in high school is how it absolutely destroyed my lips, so I did think ahead this time and bring excess amounts of chapstick. Not this time, mother nature.

We stayed in a hotel last night to get our bearings. I was surprised when I woke up naturally at 7am before I realized it was 10am back home. After enjoying the complimentary breakfast buffet, we stopped by a grocery store to stock up before heading up the mountain. Full disclosure: I acquired a truly unhealthy amount of Mountain Dew (maybe that’s actually any amount of Mountain Dew). It’ll be necessary for the first night, switching my sleep schedule to nocturnal.

The drive was absolutely beautiful. I could see the telescopes on the mountain long before we got here. The view is amazing up here. I had to force myself to stop taking pictures so I could squeeze in a power nap before we start up tonight. I’m not sure how effective a two-hour nap will be against staying up all night, but it’s better than nothing.

We’re about to begin the startup procedure for the telescopes. Dr. Terndrup is making coffee and I intend to crack open a pop right after I post this. It’s gonna be a long night.

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