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Thread started 06 May 2012 (Sunday) 10:13
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Hiking Photography

 
CameraMan
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May 06, 2012 10:13 |  #1

I would like to do some hiking this summer. I don't really need any hiking gear. I think I have that covered...

I have a nice Ape Case (forget the model number) that I bought myself for Christmas last year. It holds a lot. Right now I have 2 bodies in it with 4 or 5 lenses, chargers, extra camera batteries, 24 AA batteries, filters, 2 flashes, and kenko extension tubes. That's all in the main compartment. There are pockets galore on this thing and there also appears to be a couple of water bottle pockets on the outer flap. It is a back pack but it also has a removable roller carrier on it. This bag (minus a lot of camera gear) would probably work out fine.

My question is, what would one pack for a day of hiking? Water obviously and probably a couple of sandwiches. Obviously a camera and one or 2 good lenses (what kind?) Probably bug repellent... Anything else I should consider bringing?

Since I'm new to this whole hiking thing I should probably point that out. I'm not going to hike 20 - 30 miles away from the car. Maybe 3-6 miles at the most to start.


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jcothron
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May 06, 2012 10:20 |  #2

Since you're in Georgia...

You will find many of the trails in north GA very suitable for short half day or full day hikes. Taking time for photography obviously will slow things down a lot. You mentioned the necessities, but you might want to carry a tripod as well. :)

Since you are new to it, I'll though a couple of nice trails out to you:

1. Raven Cliff Falls Trail
2. Dukes Creek Falls

Both are located a little north of Helen and are quite easy to find.

For lenses, quarters are tight so more often than not you will find yourself using a wide angle.. but that largely depends on what and how you like to shoot. it's nice to have a macro capable lens along as well.


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CameraMan
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May 06, 2012 11:02 |  #3

Hmmm. Macro and Wide angle... I have my Sigma 10-20 and I have a Canon 28-135 IS. The only macro lenses I have are Pentax K Lenses (Manual Focus) with the Canon EF adapter.


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5Dmaniac
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May 06, 2012 11:11 |  #4

What to bring:

Water
Food
Rain Cover (Poncho)
Lighter or water proof matches
Flashlight
Swiss Army Knife or similar
Compass
Hiking Map

I also always carry an extra shirt (in case I am soaking wet from either sweat or rain)

I am sure I forgot a whole bunch of stuff, but this should get you going.




  
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Tzetsin
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May 06, 2012 11:24 as a reply to  @ CameraMan's post |  #5

I assume you plan on hiking through the day. If so, you're going to get a lot of harsh hard light, so you'll want to take an ND filter with you. Also a collapsible reflector would be good for fill light on any macro shots you take.

I'm not sure what the terrain is like there, but if its hilly at all pick up a set of hiking poles. You'd be surprised at how much all that gear + water is going to weigh after 6km or more, and the poles do wonders for your feet and balance. Also all that gear hanging off your body unbalances you on the more precarious areas, and the poles give you a lot more confidence with your stepping.

Another thing to consider is time. A 6 mile hike for a photographer takes considerably longer than that same hike for a hiker. There are going to be times that you don't even come close to completing the loop, or make your destination before the time you've alloted is coming to a close. Since your a photographer, this isn't a bad thing, actually its a good thing as it means that you've found a lot of subject matter.

Some tips for photographing while hiking. Depending on your location and the popularity of the trails, you're going to come across a lot of other hikers. sometimes they'll be "in your shot" or whatever and annoy you. What you need to remember or realize is that these other hikers are a photographic gold mine. Many photographers forget that adding a human element to a photograph will almost always make a photograph more interesting to other people. So don't be bothered by the other hikers, use them to your advantage.

After you've done a few hikes and become comfortable on the trail, you might want to consider over night hikes. Obviously the best landscape light is sun up and sun down, unfortunately that means if you on the trail or trail head in the dark, you might not have time to get back to the car before you simply can't see well anymore. You can take a flashlight and walk back, or you can take a tent and a few provisions, walk out to location for sundown, shoot, get ready for bed, take some night shots, then at sun up shoot again until the sun comes up and is no longer interesting, beak camp and head to the car before anyone else gets out of bed. This way you get tonnes of great light shots, evening, night and morning light, all at once. And its a very fulfilling experience.


Canon camera, Canon lenses.

  
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Preeb
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May 06, 2012 13:01 |  #6

CameraMan wrote in post #14387720 (external link)
I would like to do some hiking this summer. I don't really need any hiking gear. I think I have that covered...

I have a nice Ape Case (forget the model number) that I bought myself for Christmas last year. It holds a lot. Right now I have 2 bodies in it with 4 or 5 lenses, chargers, extra camera batteries, 24 AA batteries, filters, 2 flashes, and kenko extension tubes. That's all in the main compartment. There are pockets galore on this thing and there also appears to be a couple of water bottle pockets on the outer flap. It is a back pack but it also has a removable roller carrier on it. This bag (minus a lot of camera gear) would probably work out fine.

My question is, what would one pack for a day of hiking? Water obviously and probably a couple of sandwiches. Obviously a camera and one or 2 good lenses (what kind?) Probably bug repellent... Anything else I should consider bringing?

Since I'm new to this whole hiking thing I should probably point that out. I'm not going to hike 20 - 30 miles away from the car. Maybe 3-6 miles at the most to start.

Some sort of rain gear. I've never hiked in any place like Georgia, so I'm at a bit of a loss for other ideas. In the Rockies, we planned for just about anything. I've been in a snow shower in late June up in the mountains, but a day later, same location, seen it in the high 80's.

What I often carried was was called a day and a half pack, with room for camera, 2 or 3 lenses in padded cases, light jacket, rain poncho, water bottle, lunch, book (to read during lunch), compact binoculars, bird guide book, sometimes strap my tripod on the outside. Always had some band aids along just in case of a cut or blister. I've done as much as 16 miles round trip on a day hike.


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CameraMan
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May 06, 2012 15:23 |  #7

I thought about taking a trip to the Appalachian mountains but again, I would set it up so I'd be away for only a day.

Great ideas! Keep them coming!


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May 06, 2012 17:24 |  #8

My family does the hiking thing on every vacation, so I have to pack appropriately or else I'm toast. So, I usually take my 7D or 5D2 and the 17-40 and 70-200. I want something wide and something tele, but I don't want a lot of weight. The 24-70 is a wonderful lens, but the 17-40 outdoors is so sharp and wide. I can't imagine not going all day without my 70-200 2.8 IS II. What a great lens this one is! But on long hikes, less is more. Don't think I need more than these 3 items. Maybe add a filter.


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timeasterday
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May 07, 2012 07:10 as a reply to  @ SuzyView's post |  #9

Many good points already made here. Here's some stuff I was thinking of on last weekend's hike:

- Don't bring too much. I brought my 70-200 f/2.8 + extender thinking I might see some birds. Never again. Wide angle and macro were all I used.

- Filters - they are light so bring them all. I use my CPL, 3-stop ND, and 10-stop ND on most hikes.

- bring some light rubber shoes for wading into water. My Crocs work well for this but I wouldn't hike in them.

- bring an extra pair of socks.

- bring a small hand towel. After wading in the water you'll probably end up with sand on your feet before getting your boots back on.

- bring a microfiber cloth or lens cleaning kit because water spray will be present at waterfalls.

- have plenty of $1's and a pen. Some parks & forest areas have a day-use fee and some don't. Raven Cliff Falls doesn't, Dukes Creek Falls does. You need to write on the payment envelope but I don't think I ever did. Last time it was $3 but I don't know if they raised that.

- nice to have GPS or GPS-capable smartphone just to see how far you have gone. My new Blackberry Torch works well with Endomondo for tracking my hikes.


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jcothron
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May 07, 2012 07:14 |  #10

If you're planning on getting in the water, some water sandals like Tim mentioned above area great. I usually carry some attached to my pack to use if the water is going to be deeper than my waterproof hiking boots.

Also, quick-dry pants or shorts are nice to have.. which you can get at places like REI. You can be hip deep then dry out 10 min. later...well worth it for the comfort.


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Patrick
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May 07, 2012 14:18 as a reply to  @ jcothron's post |  #11

Check out some of the hiking & backpacking web sites and forums for a checklist.

I'm an ultralight backpacker so the only camera I take is a Powershot SD780 IS.

My wife and I are making plans for a camping & biking trip so I'm excited I can carry the extra photo gear strapped on the bike. :D


Bodies, Lenses, Lights, Stands, Transmitters, Receivers, Tripods, Meters, etc...

  
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May 07, 2012 18:49 |  #12

"The ten essentials" (google it for more info) should always be included while backpacking/hiking.

Also if your backpack doesn't have a hip belt you may want to look into a pack with one. Hip belt are essential then hiking for long periods.




  
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Preeb
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May 07, 2012 21:48 |  #13

gremlin75 wrote in post #14395426 (external link)
Also if your backpack doesn't have a hip belt you may want to look into a pack with one. Hip belt are essential then hiking for long periods.

Yes. That is why I mentioned the "day and a half pack". My Kelty has an internal frame and hip belt. It's very comfortable to wear and I'm 6'2" with a long torso. I've had it for 30 years and still use it. It's not as "cool" looking as many modern mid size backpacks, but it has served me very well for a long time. I've even strapped on a sleeping bag and pad and used a Gore-Tex bivvy sack for an overnight hike.


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