STEP 1: I prestained all of my 2x4 boards on sawhorses outside. I like to prestain outdoor projects especially if they are slatted, creating difficult to reach areas, and because I can stain all sides of every board, further protecting joints from the weather and moisture.
This stain is a translucent penetrating deck/fence stain. It soaks into the wood for deep protection. To keep up with protection, you just have to reapply a coat about every 5 years. No sanding, stripping, just brush on over the existing coat.