Thanks Ken for forwarding on the article, it was a very interesting read.
What particularly struck me was that 30 years ago the gear solutions for going lighter are pretty much the same as we have now, and the only real advances made in the 30 years since has been the selection of materials available now is greater.
The superlight challenge gearlist in the article stands up well compared to my own UL gearlist for 3 season tramping and is lighter, my only justification is I don't tramp in the Sierra's ;-). If we compared the same gearlist to that shown in pt.3 of Will's recent articles on Mountain-Superlight, the only real difference is in the choice of materials used, i.e. Cuben wasn't around 30 years ago.
Another thing to strike me was (and it should of been obvious) is that (some) people have been trying to reduce packweight long before Ray Jardine made the ultralight concept popular.
Ultimately the take-away lesson for me is that gear doesn't matter so much, it's the skills, techniques and altitudes that allow you to be ultralight, and those have never changed, and are as old and important as the hills are.