"They are what NOLS uses."

NOLS also use the Golite Jam 2.

Kutenay - you are on the wrong forum <img src="/forums/images/graemlins/tongue.gif" alt="" />. This is for ultralight and lightweight backpackers. 7 - 9 lbs for a backpack, unless used to haul a dead carcass out of the bush, is way overkill for most of us on this board.

A $750 pack that will last a lifetime is pointless if it is so heavy that it precludes someone from actually enjoying the outdoor experience. Even if a frameless ultralight pack wears out after three seasons, the cost is under $100 bucks (i.e. Golite Jam). So 21 years with a heavy pack or 21 years with an ultralight pack for the same cost.....mmmm......

The original poster mentioned a Tarptent so it does imply a lightweight approach to the outdoors (...awaiting patiently for your comment as to how useless the Tarptents are and we should all be using Hillebergs....).