Mount Hoffmann & May Lake
My first backpacking trip was in October 2022, a fortunate stumble across a late-season permit to May Lake in Yosemite National Park with my partner. May Lake is officially designated the "easiest backpacking trip in Yosemite," which was exactly what we needed -- but we still managed to get lost in the dark when trying to scramble up Mount Hoffmann after dumping our gear at the campsite. I spent most of the night jumping at every sound, concerned that it was a bear (usually just a deer, curious as to why all of these people were around). The camping itself was just a prelude to the next morning, when we hiked to the top of Cloud's Rest, yet the best pictures that I got on the trip were from the brief night we spent at May Lake, enjoying the calm and quiet under a clear sky full of stars.