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Gear for a long trip


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#1 douglas scott

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Posted 15 February 2012 - 02:27 PM

so yeah, advice on what to take and how to take it...

i was just watching this clip () documenting a couple's trip to patagonia.
they spent five weeks on the road and cover what looks to be some remote areas, carrying some serious (not some P&S) gear ("Canon 1D mark IV + full Canon lens package - 17 tilt shift, 24, 50, 70-200, polarizer, gradient filter, monopod, tripod")

and it made me think, for a trip of that duration (or longer) and if you're on a budget (in terms of domicile and transport...I'd bring my own lenses)...how would you pack for that? what video/photo-graphy gear would you think is essential? and how would you carry all that about?!

how about for a more urban tour? like backpacking through Europe.

my first shot at the ideal MINIMUM list would include: DSLR, wide prime, standard prime, portrait prime, 2x Extender, tripod + ballhead, filters (variable ND, polarizer), intervalometer, Memory Cards, goPro.
And I think a computer or some hard drive would be necessary to transfer data off the cards for backup.
So that's already a lot to carry around, especially if my lodgings aren't so secure (or small) and I must take it all with me or I need to run to catch my next transfer.

any thoughts or advice by experience would be appreciated, as I expect I'll run into this dilemma soon. Thanks!
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#2 Adrian Sierkowski

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Posted 15 February 2012 - 04:13 PM

A lot depends on what you're doing.

Were it me, I'd take a S16mm Bolex with a motor/battery (and wind up if you loose power) and as much film as I can carry with a good zoom lens and probably something like a bean-bag support. But that's just in a hypothetical, i wan't to be ready for just about ANYTHING.

When I shot the doc I did in Senegal; it was EX1, Macbook Pro, and 2x Western Digital hard drives, Solar back-pack, and as many other batts as I could carry. But that was what made sense for the shoot/budget at that time.

Going DSLR, I'd rather take 2 cheaper bodies, than 1 expensive body; perhaps 2 7Ds or 60Ds or whatever. I'd have a good go-to lens (I am partial to a 50mm F1.4 for my Nikon), a wide lens, and a longer telephoto/zoom. I'd also max out on SD cards and leave the computer @ Home, just treat the cards as tape, tripod, and ND grad filters and a pola and cal it a day.

But again, it all i kinda specific to what you're shooting, where, when, and with whom.
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#3 Vincent Sweeney

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Posted 16 February 2012 - 12:07 AM

What's it all for? An SLR with a fast 17-50 is about all you'll want to deal with (or even less) after the first day or two of hopping planes, trains and buses. Take in the places and people. Too many people distance themselves from what is going on right in front of them by pulling out some stupid camera.... unless you are talking about some paid project here.
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#4 douglas scott

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Posted 16 February 2012 - 01:16 PM

I understand requirements will vary depending on situations and circumstance.

I'd like to know how people prepare for the unexpected. A lot of research will need to be made up front, but going somewhere you've not familiar with and still be flexible. Especially if say you'll be away for maybe months, so I'm not sure how many here would be satisfied using one lens (even if its a zoom) for what may be half a year for every situation.

yeah, not an easy answer I figure, thanks for the input :D
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#5 Patrick ODonnell

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Posted 07 March 2012 - 10:58 AM

I went on a three week trip to Indochina last year. I carried a Canon XH-A1 (which weighs 5 lbs.), and it was too much. After 12 or more hours of walking around each day, up and down hills and temples, I just wanted to leave it somewhere. If you are just documenting your trip (and not making a "professional" project, i.e., for money), go with something light and small - an 8mm camera or maybe a GH2, and a Gorillapod. I think even a standard DSLR is going to be too heavy. You also have to factor in the other baggage you will be carrying from place to place. And that's just the logistics. The larger problem with carrying a lot of gear is that you will focus on whether you have everything with you (and protecting it from being stolen), making sure the shot is right, etc., when you should be paying attention to what is in front of you. You can find a balance, but the more gear you have, the more likely it is you will lose the moment.
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Media Blackout - Custom Cables and AKS