View Full Version : Going to Hawaii, What to bring.....

16th of January 2009 (Fri), 15:02
I am going to Hawaii in May and am thinking about what gear to bring. I currently have a 40d with kit lens (28-135mm) and 50mm f1.8, and a 430EX speedlight. I plan to buy either a 17-55mm F2.8IS, or (most likely) a tokina 12-24mm for landscapes. I am also bringing my point and shoot to bring with me to use during most of our more active excursions. I have a tripod, but am on the fence about lugging it along. I plan to use the 40d mainly for mountain, volcano shots, sunrises,sets, waterfalls, and general pics around the resort we are staying at. We are staying in Maui and Kauai. So which lens should I purchase/bring. Also, should I invest in a polarizing filter? Should I bring the tripod? What else?

16th of January 2009 (Fri), 20:48
Hi there,

I would definately invest in some filters. An ND filter, DEFINATELY get yourself a polarizer, and a GND if you can. I suggest you research what each of these filters do and how they can affect your shots.

How about looking for something wider, like a Canon 10-22? You won't miss the 6mm difference to your 28-135. The other thing if i was you, i would be looking at a 70-200 to have some reach, but maybe you can possibly hire this? It all depends on what you want, but there my suggestions.

Also, definately bring the tripod, leave it at your hotel if your taking your point and shoot out, then when you want to take photos with your SLR take it with you!

16th of January 2009 (Fri), 22:36
I like wide angle lenses like most people, but I use a 17-40L on my 30D (with 1.6x crop factor, making it approx 27-64mm) and it is more than sufficient. Now, if the shot is wider than the camera will shoot, I do panoramics and let Photoshop CS3 do all the work, so keep that in mind. There are many places that you are going to have to do this (I can think of many places on Kaua'i alone), so your decision. Also, it's hard to stitch shots warped by a fisheye.

The other reason I don't like to use a fisheye is because of one of my other recommendations: GNDs. They are so versatile for landscape work anyway, and if you're coming this way, you have to invest in AT LEAST a 2 or 3 stop soft (and if you plan on shooting over the ocean, maybe a 2 or 3 hard). GNDs don't work well with fisheyes in my opinion. I would suggest a 3 stop reverse GND too.

As mentioned before, invest in a good CPL (I like the Hoya PRO1 series, but if you have the means I suggest the Heliopan). I keep my CPL on almost all of the time.

You'll probably want a good, sharp wide angle lens as well as a moderate zoom. I also have the 75-300mm and it is sufficient to get the distant shots that I want. I definitely want something sharper than it though.

As for the tripod, I would totally bring it and take it with you. I take my tripod everywhere! Most of the time, it'll be in the car anyway so you won't have to carry it anyway. Many of the places you're going to see (or going to want to see) are drivable unless you decide to do some backcountry hiking (which I highly suggest on Kaua'i), so carrying it won't be that much of an issue.

I hope this helps. If you have any more questions or want some suggestions, post them. I'll do my best to answer.


Dean Humphrey
18th of January 2009 (Sun), 17:44
what "realitysays" posted is correct, for the Waterfalls yout tripod, and a ND filter will make some memorable shots. The super wide is a must, but in my opinion since its whale season, I'd bring my biggest telephoto.

I'm going to Maui in February and I'm taking my -2 ND filter, my Circular Polarizer, either my 50D or MK II and for lenses, 17-40, 100-400 past that, I'm not sure if I want to haul the 70-200 2.8L but probably will. Also I'm taking my tripod and extension tubes for Macro. If I take the MK II I'll probably take a flash to.

18th of January 2009 (Sun), 18:58
Thanks for the replies. I just bought a tokina 12-24 F4 lens today, so I have the wide end covered. I will bring my kit 28-135 lens, and maybe rent a 70-200 F2.8 IS. I have to look into filters now. I know how to use a polarizing filter but I am not familiar with ND or GND. Is there a website that has any instruction on how to use these?

18th of January 2009 (Sun), 20:51
I was in Maui and Oahu 2 weeks ago, (3 weeks total) and I didn't even bring my 70-200 out of the suitcase. I couldn't find a place I could use it. Depends on what you're trying to shoot tho. I normally travel to Maui in May and its going to be very nice about that time. I would highly recommend a tripod even if its an cheap one.

19th of January 2009 (Mon), 20:11
a wide lens, a mid range IS lens, a fast prime, a light tripod, cp filter, 3 stop gnd would be nice. on a crop, 135 will take care of your images. i would not bring a heavy zoom. I also the minimum carry the 50 1.8, but preferebly sigma 30 1.4, or canon 50 1.4.

Dean Humphrey
19th of January 2009 (Mon), 21:09
I was in Maui and Oahu 2 weeks ago, (3 weeks total) and I didn't even bring my 70-200 out of the suitcase. I couldn't find a place I could use it. Depends on what you're trying to shoot tho. I normally travel to Maui in May and its going to be very nice about that time. I would highly recommend a tripod even if its an cheap one.

I bring my big zoom mainly for the whale watch, between February and April is prime whale migration. You can see breaches from shore, and on a tour get even closer. Otherwise there probably is not a great reason to bring the big tele.

Just Be
19th of January 2009 (Mon), 21:17
I brought my XTi's with a 24-105L on one and a 10-22 on the other in Kauai last summer.
Used the 24-105 90% of the time. 24 was wide enough and I was happy to have the 105 on the longer side. Bringing two bodies wasn't as needed as I though it would be. Next time it's one body and one lens with a small P&S in the pocket.

Rich S
20th of January 2009 (Tue), 02:05
They have the best windsurfing in Piia Maui near the airport http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Y_yMy7Mrb8c and a Costco if you are staying in a condo. You will be late for whales. Remember long lenses make great landscape shots when you can't get close. If you go up to the volcano or do surf shooting and as a macro lens for birds. I got great shots of Lanai and Molokai from shore. You will like the Tokina 12-24mm and if you go full frame it works for a wiiiiidddeee lens too.... Flower shots are also good and you don't have to bring the Macro lens. I brought 20lbs and used it all. Tripods are good to get you in the shot and neat wave shots on the rocks at 1-90 seconds at dawn-dusk.....Rich

Steve In Kentucky
21st of January 2009 (Wed), 14:47
Flip Flops and a G10;)