The morning sky has not yet begun to lighten as the truck bounces over the white, moonlit ground, tires sinking nearly to the rim in deep, snowy ruts.
To the west, Laurel Mountain and Mt. Morrison are limned in light, stars brilliant, waiting.
Tomorrow, when the sun rises, the days will begin to lengthen, one minute more every morning, one minute more every evening, every day until the Summer Solstice in June when the cycle reverses.
But not today.