I live in Raleigh, NC and do most of my backpacking in the Blue Ridge Mountains in NC and Virginia. I started backpacking in my mid-20s and I’ve been doing it off and on for the past 15 years since. Nowadays I typically do weekend trips with my kids. I started out looking to drop weight since I was carrying for myself and the kids. Now that they are older I’m back to mostly carrying for myself and I’ve managed to get my base weight down to around 10 lbs without sacrificing any comfort.