I found an interesting quote from a while back that I wanted to share, and get some opinions on. I find the logic to be enormously sound. There's a general trend of cutting down to ridiculously small or thin packs, and when I see someone getting ready for a multi-day trip with something that has no frame at all, I can't help but think about the back issues that don't reveal themselves quite as obviously.
I am on board for reducing weight; I don't think I'm on board with cutting out backpack padding, like a lot of people are. At least, not like I used to be. As comfortable as my Boreas 40L is, the dialed-in fit of my huge Kelty is just fine with all the padding. It's nice having a pillow on your lower lumbar for distribution on a sub-20lb load. Is it just me? Am I crazy?
Here's the quote:
"I commented on pack weight in another thread a while back, but I'll say the same thing:
In my opinion (and I'm no expert, but I know what I like) the one single place I would not skimp is your pack. Without going all Gregory Baltoro on anyone, the options are excellent out there. I say anything under 3lbs (yes, I meant to type 'lbs' not 'oz' haha) is still plenty good for a thru-hike. I've hiked with heavier for shorter, but the one thing I don't want is hurting shoulders, trapezius, or other back issues. Just make sure the pack has the features you want (pockets, mesh holders, water storage/bladder hooks, whatever) and that it fits your gear, and that includes a bear canister.
People used to (errr...still do) hike the PCT, CDT, AT, etc., with all styles of packs, some newer and some older.
Find a pack that fits, find a pack that fits your style, find a pack that fits your gear, find a pack that fits your budget....THEN and only then start looking at ounces.
Again, my opinion, and one that may not be popular with some. Cut your tags off, cut your toothbrush, cut your hair, get a colonoscopy, but don't skimp on your pack for a 4 month hike. :)"
-Dug Shelby, BPL Member
P.S. "This is a forum for UL backpackers, look elsewhere" has never been helpful or necessary. Just looking for opinions!