Since you'll be doing most of your hiking east of the Mississippi, you can stay with fairly light, mainstream gear and do 3 or 4 night trips, carrying perhaps 2 -3 quarts of water, at 30 pounds or less. (That includes some insulating clothes - coldest temperatures around 30 degrees.)

I noticed you were looking at a Hubba Hubba tent. Why a 2-person tent? If you're hiking solo, the Hubba or another 1-person tent would be a better choice. Think about minimalizing your gear: boil and soak cooking leads to a lighter food bag and reduces your kitchen to a mug/pot, spoon, and small canister stove (total: 8 oz.) Drinking only water, instead of having a hot beverage at meal time, and cooking only supper further reduces the weight of the food bag; it also means you use less fuel, which lightens that load.

Use a short (48") sleeping pad, and put your empty pack (with it's padded back) under your lower legs and feet - this not only saves some weight on the pad, but solves the problem of where to store the pack so it's out of the way in that one-man tent.

I have an Aether 60 that I really like; it carries the 30-pound load I need for a fall 4-day trip, with 3 quarts of water, and there's still some room left in the pack, so I wonder if you really need the Aether 70. Downsizing to the Aether 60 would save you 3/4 pound, and still give you the support you want for a 30 or 35 pound load. (You might even look at the new Exos 58, or Atmos series. The Exos 58 is a pound and a half lighter than the Aether 60 - though the suspension isn't as good, and it's only comfort-rated to 30-35 pounds.)

Other little tricks, like using a waterproof/breathable rain jacket as a windbreaker, can also save some weight.

Just some food for thought.