I'm a life long hiker starting with many family hikes in my youth. First backpacking experience began as a 12 year old with a friend using homemade pack frames that we made from a plan in Boys Life magazine. I didn't begin real hiking and backpacking until 8 years later after I bought my first car. My first overnight experience the packs were way too heavy because of poor gear and heavy food. The second was a week long experience and we didn't have enough food. Fishing was poor so we were hungry the whole week. I've learned a lot from those two experiences and in the mid 70's figured out how to carry a 17 lb pack for a 3 day 2 night trip and eat well years before ultralight backpacking was popular. I've been backpacking from 1 to 10 times a year the last 44 years., and have spent hundreds of days and nights enjoying the outdoors in a variety of activities.