For day hiking? How about a 5DIII with 24-105L f4 IS.
+1... what some of you deem a dayhiking kit i would equate more with a special ops training march!
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In short, keep doing maths and get good at estimating distances and very wide aperture become more than a 1 eye focus machine.
Why not convert your 450d to do IR? It may open a whole new world of creativeness for you.
For my 8" f/10 Intes Maksutov, it changes the optic from a 2000mm f/10 to a 1360mm f/6.3. This particular one works both with CCD cameras AND visually. There are some that will change this to a 1100mm f/5.5 or to 550mm f/3.3 but these are for CCD use only.
Thanks a lot...!
Do you recommend lens filters?
I would always use a UV filter by the sea because salt gets stuck on the front element constantly and it is pretty abrasive when you wipe it off unless you use some kind of cleaning liquid. That it completes the weather sealing on the 70-200 is also nice and I imagine that will be your most used lens when shooting surfers.