Well one thing about getting older, parts of your body starts to break down. We can no longer carry the gear that we use to when we were in our 20s. It is either our back or knees, ankles that just can no longer take the heavy weight. Instead of hanging in the towel rethink your gear selection
Due to my back all of my gear is in the ultra light category when it comes to backpack camping. I had to rethink and reinvent what camping would look like. The only thing i knew is that i had to start over from scratch
I started with an ultra light Jansport internal backpack that weighs under 2 lbs . It is no longer in production but at the time it was the lightest backpack i could find at 50l. Compared to my Dragonfly external frame backpack i save 2+ lbs of weight
Next i switched from a tent to the ENO Junglefest hammock 400 lb capacity, another 3 lbs of weight saved
Dropping my D battery LED lantern for the Black Diamond Icon 700 graphite headlamp or the Princeton Tec Apex led headlamp, saved me another 1 1/2 lbs.
Nixing my stainless steel mess kit for either my coleman ultra light aluminum mess kit or my GSI or MSR titanium mess kits, saved almost 1 1/2 lbs
Switching from old school sleeping bag insolation fill to ultra light ultra compact sleeping bags with synthetic and down fill versions saved me a whopping 5 lbs and it was a crap load less bulking of a backpack setup
I nixed all the carrying totes, bags, boxes , containers that all my gear came in saving another 1 lb. yea they looked good in their own travel containers but those containers add up in weight.
So by this point i had already taken off 14 lbs of weight from my backpack. 14 lbs is a lot of weight not to carry around but I didnt stop there.
Now was the time to nickels and dime it ( a term where you are counting your pennies or in this case weight) replacing all the camping gear/tool items I had for lighter versions and gear that had multiple functions vs individual gear with only 1 function
SO i swapped the following for much lighter versions
Military compass for a lightweight upgraded boy scout flat map compass
knives and forks and spoons for a titanium folding spork
stainless steel canteen for an aluminum canteen
My camo pack n bag for a hydration bladder bare bone
Tarp to an ultra light rain fly
Ka-bar BK2 companion to the Tops Mil Spie 3 knife
Torche wind proof lighter to a Bic lighter
my camp gear repair kit and grooming kit (leatherman multi tool, tent repair tool kit, Allen wrench, portable scissors, multi bit screw driver, nail file, nail clippers, pen, dental floss, tweezers) swapping them all for my Victorinox Swiss army SwissChamp knife
switched from rope to paracord
with all said and done i dropped an amazing 20 lbs with my new camping setup but i didnt stop there
Now it was the time to start getting lighter attire and foot wear. I shopped at REI EMS and NRS for their clearance sales and got the lightest jackets with zipper vents, ultra light wicking thermal underwear and wicking outer layers, ultra light hiking boots and socks and even ultra light trek poles
All now that was left was changing how i handled bringing food.
I bought a dehydrator to remove the water weight form all the food i was bringing so that i could rehydrate them when needed, switched form bringing breads to wraps, put all my spices into straws that i heat sealed closed on both ends, brought freeze dried dehydrated foods
At the end of the day from changing all my gear ,clothing, footwear and food changes i dropped over 30 lbs including the weight of clothing i was wearing from my backpacking setup and my back is all the better for it