Guys, thanks for the kind words and the feedback. Let me try to respond to some of Andy's questions and some of the points raised by inaki diaz de etura.
About the conditions - this year must have been a big snow year indeed! When I came through the third section (in the high summer), I was usually in snow for 3-4 hours a day, sometimes more. As a rule of thumb, just about anything over 2,500 meters between Lescun and L'Hospitalet was completely blanketed, which, in the middle of the hike, is just about everything. To use the Gourges Blancs example, I was in crampons from about 500 meters below the pass all the way through Portillion, Literole, and down to the big wayside in the valley next to the Maladeta massif (and then again on the way over Mulleres, and most of the way to Salardu).
Also, I think you may have gotten a bit lucky with the weather/fog/wind. I had five or six days of really, really dense fog up high in the mountains, and lost lots of time stumbling around with the map and compass trying to find the route. No doubt, this was made worse because I'm far from an expert routefinder. I also had a spat of really bad, really scary weather in the second and third sections - on the way through the Refuge Wallon/Gran Fache area there were a series of nighttime thunderstorms that about blew me off the ridgeline! Twice I camped in what seemed to be protected spots, and the wind got so bad that I had to pop the poles out of "The One" to keep the fabric from ripping, and just spend the night with the tent lying on top of me, whipping around in the wind. Not fun, especially when it's pouring rain. Lightning was also a big issue - I feel like I almost got killed on the way over a few high passes, and even when you're down lower, if a storm blows over there is rarely any tree cover.
You're right about the tourists around the huts - they can be really annoying, and they really break up the sense of being in the wild. But, for every touristy place out there, there is another with NO ONE - this may have also had to do with the high snow this year, but in the second and third sections I would often see absolutely no one going over the high stuff with me. Also, the fourth section was almost completely empty - I probably saw two or three others hikers, all just daytrippers, in seven days.
About the pacing and resupply - yes, as I mentioned in the article, I was trying to find a compromise between ultra-light utilty and, at the same time, really making the most of the mountains. I don't have the money to go to Spain every weekend, so I wanted to soak it up! I'm no stranger to big mileages - on the AT I averaged about 30 miles per day on normal (non-resupply) days of hiking, and I'd guess that, like you, I did about 30 or so days of "transportation hiking" on the HRP. But I also packed out enough food so that I could do the "Classic Summits," as well as three or four other big mountains near the route. I think it would be a shame to do the HRP and not climb, at the very least, Gran Fache, Aneto, the Vignemale, and Estats. As I said, it is completely possible to hike the HRP ultra-light; the trail is only about 500 miles long, and if you wanted to zip through you could do it very fast, probably. But, I'm not sure this is the best venue for that kind of thing (and don't get me wrong - I love fast hiking..).
It sounds like we had two very different experiences out there, and part of it is probably that I'm less experienced! Or maybe 2005 was a more tame year than 2008. Either way, I don't think the Pyrenees should be underestimated; the gear list in this article is a "recommended" list, not what I actually carried (although it is similar); my base weight was probably around ten pounds as well, and I felt unprepared for a lot of what I ran into. Also, this article is written with "normal" backpackers in mind (like myself!), so I apologize if some of the stuff that really wowed me seems like no-big-deal to more experienced folks.
..which brings my to Andy's question - I went into the trip with, basically, an AT-skillset and nothing more. I spent about a week reading up on basic crampons/ice-axe stuff (proper footing, self arrest, etc.) but I had no "hands-on" knowledge going into the hike, which was not good. There were three or four days out there when I felt more than a little uncomfortable about what I was doing. That being said, I did do the hike with no real problems (other than some fear), and I think that a novice to alpine backpacking can responsible solo the HRP, provided a basic physical wherewithal, athleticism, and a healthy sense of fear and respect. Especially if the snow is low, as it was for "inaki diaz de etura."