In somewhat cartoon terms, one strand takes liberty to be a (or in extreme cases, the) fundamental human good in and of itself; the other takes liberty to be a means to the end of discovery of methods of social organization that create other benefits. I’ll call the first “liberty-as-goal” libertarianism and the second “liberty-as-means” libertarianism.
I’d say there’s something to this. When I’m feeling libertarian, I usually lean toward the latter. Liberty is certainly something to be desired in itself, but I’m not sure if it should have pride of place.