>And I also would put <12lbs as minimalist. On some trips my water and food alone will weigh that much. Add in gear and I rarely leave the house below 20lbs. Doesn't mean I haven't got out my scales and splashed out on some fancy cottage equipment, not that I don't know what I'm doing and don't have adequate skills. It merely means that, like the article suggested, I looked at everything in my pack and decided what the minimum was that I was happy with. It's also very much a trial and error game.
And you can hardly blame REI for highlighting gear that they sell. There was nothing *wrong* with any of the choices they mentioned, and they did preface some choices with a "for instance".<
This goes back to what I said earlier about them including food and water in their numbers. From what I've seen most traditional backpackers don't use anything resembling the term base weight. In which case the numbers make much more sense.
However, there is no need to use the fact that REI doesn't carry MLD, GG, SMD, etc. as a crutch for the article. What they do carry are some bivy bags, tarps, Golite packs, titanium stakes, and alcohol stoves. Other than bivy bags I see no mention of any of these things in the article (unless you count "soda can" under the stove heading of one of their charts with no explanation) and thus my qualm isn't that they highlighted gear they sell but, rather, that they left out so much of the applicable gear they do sell. Because of this the article lacks a lot of depth. I feel I must repeat my earlier statement; the author creates the impression that he doesn't understand lightweight backpacking techniques or even the gear his company carries.
Actually, in hindsight, it might be better to say he creates the impression that he doesn't understand how some of the gear his company carries relates to lightweight backpacking techniques. This may actually be the case but I don't really know seeing as how I've never met Mr. Wood.