Taking an external frame to an ultralight backpacking mode is very easy.
External frames last forever, even though the packs bound to them with Clevis pins may be worn out. Many times a pack has zippers, heavy pack cloth with holes, or simply way too much outdated metal hardware which is extremely heavy. The simple procedure of stripping all the old worn out equipment from the pack takes just a few minutes.
Once stripped, the external frame with shoulder straps and cushy hip belt weigh just under two pounds. The silnylon stuff sacks with gear are sacks normally used inside the pack. The method we will employ cinches these sacks directly to the frame. All can be covered with an ultralight silnylon pack cover, if desired, for rain protection.
My pack has a modern custom silnylon pack which I made to accommodate a Garcia Bear Canister for a long distance hike in Montana, grizzly country. Now I am in Appalachian Mountains and will use this pack for other adventures so a packless system is in order.
This week we'll be blogging about that process. Tomorrow, taking measurements and analyzing our stash of stuff sack, we'll begin assembling the system.
Check out http://www.brawnyview.blogspot.com/ for more details.