Michelle and I just came back from Angel Island, where we camped the weekend with friends we met on BPL. They brought their 8 month old son and we brought our three youngest daughters to explore the island.
In three weeks we will go to Yosemite with friends we met at GGG IV and V. This summer and last summer I went on long trails with a friend I met at GGG IV.
Where am I going with this, you wonder. To me BPL and GGG are complementary - both are creating a community of like-minded people despite them coming from many different, diverse backgrounds. Both do it in a completely different way, but they "talk" to the same people. GGG has enhanced BPL tremendously by providing the opportunity to meet many people at once face to face, talk around the camp fire, exchange tips, show gear and make friends. Many of us backpacked alone in the past, because it was hard to find like-minded people for our excursions. With the combination of BPL and GGG a whole community has been built (at least here in the West) where it is easy to find people with similar backpacking style and go out together. You and Ken and Tony and Mark (I'm sure I forget others) deserve a lot of credit for making GGG what it is. GGG has grown over the years and with the recent addition of vendors it has become even more valuable for many participants. My observation so far has been that the people at GGG and on BPL who share a passion of backpacking (however light) are very inclusive. Despite any differences people might have in other areas of life, out there backpacking in the woods or mountains they are very helpful.
I hope that both BPL and GGG will continue to flourish and I'm willing to do my part by helping with GGG and being helpful on the BPL forums whenever I feel I have something to contribute.
Thanks for all your hard work.
P.S.: Ken, I have read the majority of your posts in the last couple of years. Seeing your name as author of a post makes me open it and read it, because I appreciate your direct style. Stay true to yourself.