I am still trying to get a 10lb base weight. I’m at 11-15lbs depending on weather. I have struggled with gear, I often end up buying traditional gear that is “light” then end up frustrated because I spent a lot of money and I didn’t realize there was a cheaper UL alternative. For example, I got this really nice Osprey Aether 70 that weighs 4lb 9oz a year ago. Ya it’s really comfortable but it was over 200 bucks. I just got a Golite Pinnacle for $85 after reading UL sites. To think I could have directed that money towards a down bag frustrates the hell out of me. I have an embarrassing amount of brand new gear that I will never use. I also really have no business spending a lot of money on these things (3 kids, mortgage, car payment…….. you get what I mean).
I also call the 3 heavys the 3 expensives. I am all UL except my sleeping bag. This site has been an invaluable resource for me. I appreciate people who come up with clever stuff like, use a 1 liter disposable water bottle instead of a Nalgaene, it’s nearly free and super light (That is just an easy example, there are dozens of others).
The 3 expensives can be gotten around if you have a lot of time for MYOG, I don’t.
I like the idea of this scale of importance weight –vs- need – vs- value. I actually do this to an extent on my gear spreadsheet. I use a 1-4 scale. This is all completely relative to me and what I need:
1 – essentials (Sleep, Shelter, Pack, Water treatment, food….)
2 – secondary essentials (“I won’t die without”…… Stove, Toiletries, secondary water container, some meds like Tylenol, deet….)
3 – nice to haves (extra stuff sacks, knife, potty trowel, salt and pepper…..)
4 – excess comfort items (bottle of spirits, MP3 player, bag of cheese poofs….)
Everything on my lest gets a 1-4. So when I pack I know the 1’s have to go, and most likely the 2’s. Then I can start adding 3’s and 4’s. If my pack is heavier than I want it, I start shaving off 3’s and 4’s.
This all probably seems to elaborate for the experienced UL packers but I am a noobie to UL and it helps me quite a bit. I sort out the importance of the item well before I am actually packing so that if a get clouded judgment while packing I can refer to the list.