Whoops! I felt bad when Tim came back and found drift instead. Now after you all have run off to the horizon like wild horses I feel awful for him! Sorry Tim. Better luck next time. LOL
(and with apologies out of the way...the hijacking continues)
To the people who keep going on about the very spare precedent publications about "UL" backpacking, yes they are there, and yes I already knew about most of them (even without just regurgitating things I heard on BPL) for a long time, an no they had nearly zilch effect on the mindset at large. Totally besides the point IMHO.
My only point was that something actually seemed to *happen* (an actual trend or collective movement of some kind) as a result after Jardine's book. Maybe is was the backpacking weltanschauung right at the same time, and Jardine was an effect and not the cause at all. Seems very likely. Maybe there was a sizable UL movement before that and I just missed it. it could happen.
But I never said Jardine's book was a classic. For the record though I did find its mindset a revelation for me at the time, and though I think it is worth it for people even now to read it, I think it also contains a lot of craziness and crankiness. It was written by a person, unlike Colin Fletcher, that doesn't seem to have a introspective bone in his body. People who write screeds on the state of society, consumerism, corporations (not to mention what people eat), without turning that same analytic fervor on themselves now and then, at least a little, and with no sense of balance or self-doubt, let alone occasional self-deprecation, really can be irritating.
I agree with Nick that if you are only going to read one book The Complete Walker (up to III at least), and probably no other book about the very specialized, isolated and insignificant hobby/cult that is backpacking that could be called a "Classic", largely due to Fletcher's many fine qualities as an writer, and not having anything to do with gear recommendations, which even when up to date are a pretty lame reason to read a book.
And something also *happened* when that book came out.
I'm not really impressed to hear examples of UL gear people used decades ago, most of which I already knew about. At least not as an example of how "these kids today no nothing". Do you really think that is the point? As an "old timer" myself I get annoyed when I hear a young whippersnapper talk about a Beatles or Dylan cover they think was an original, but I don't go off about it - I already seem old, cranky and irrelevant enough to the younger generation without that!