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Author Topic: Kit for California trip  (Read 5760 times)

bholliman

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Re: Kit for California trip
« Reply #15 on: July 03, 2013, 05:29:40 PM »
A 135L + 1.4x and 2x will weigh more than the 70-300L.  You will gain 1+ stop in aperture/shutter speed, but the zoom will win in IQ, focal length range, and convenience.

Perhaps renting a UWA lens in CA for a few days will be a good compromise.

Good point about the extenders.  The 70-300L is probably the better option.  I'm still on the fence about how much I'll need a UWA.
Bodies:  6D, EOS-M (22/2 and 18-55)
Lenses: Rokinon 14mm 2.8, 35mm 2.0 IS, 85mm 1.8, 100mm 2.8L IS Macro, 135mm 2.0L, 24-70mm 2.8L II, 70-200mm 2.8L IS II, Extenders: EF 1.4xIII, EF 2xIII ; Flash: ST-E3-RT, 600EX-RT (x3)

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Re: Kit for California trip
« Reply #15 on: July 03, 2013, 05:29:40 PM »

JPAZ

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Re: Kit for California trip
« Reply #16 on: July 03, 2013, 07:34:55 PM »
As a "trekker" and a "schlep-per" I'd vote strongly for limiting your weight when hiking.  If it is hot and uphill, you'll see what I mean.

For the hiking part of the trip, just carry one "walk-around" and one long lens.  Personally, I'd carry the 24-105 and the 70-300.  Enjoy the walk and enjoy the place.  You might consider something wider, but panning and putting together a couple of shots at home doesn't weigh as much!

Just my opinion.  A beautiful part of the world.

JP
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distant.star

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Re: Kit for California trip
« Reply #17 on: July 03, 2013, 08:13:27 PM »
.
I will urge simplicity. No matter what you take you will likely wish you had something else along also. So, take the least that will do a reasonable job getting the images you want and forget trying to have something for every circumstance. Half the fun of photography is the challenge of getting the shot using what you have. And, if you're like me, you'll be distracted by all the goings on and not want to pay too much attention to photography gear anyway. You'll set up the minimum you need and just use it.

If I were going, I'd limit lenses to the 24-70 and 135. Given that I like UWA, I'd consider buying or borrowing or renting a 17-40 because it's very light and will give you options in the park that you can't otherwise have. I'd take the 430 flash also.

For something completely different, the EOS-M just went on sale at a truly steal price. It's so small, you might consider taking that instead of the S100.

Have fun. SB is a sweet little town with lots to take picture of -- beaches, birds, flowers, etc. And the parks, what can be said!! Show us some great pics when you get back.
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mwh1964

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Re: Kit for California trip
« Reply #18 on: July 03, 2013, 08:57:16 PM »
24-105 or 24-70 + 70-300 no doubt. Plus a light wide angle as 28 f1.8.
5D3 | 16-35L IS | 24-70L II | 24-105L | 70-200L II | 70-300L | 15 fisheye | 35 IS | 40 STM | 50 f1.4 | 100L | B&W Kaesemann | 2 x 600 EX-RT | ST-E3-RT | MR14-EX | EOS M + 22 STM + 90 EX | Manfrotto | Billingham | Lowepro | Think Tank

scottkinfw

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Re: Kit for California trip
« Reply #19 on: July 03, 2013, 09:59:03 PM »
I would say 24+70 II, 70-300L as a minimum for lenses.  Others are better to comment on the primes.
Have a great time.
sek

Next month my wife, 14-year old son and I are flying to California to spend two weeks.  The purpose of the trip is to attend my nieces wedding.  Following the wedding my extended family has rented a large home in Santa Barbara to have a week long reunion.  The final week of the trip will be visiting Sequoia and Kings Canyon National Parks with just my wife, son and a nephew for lots of hiking, camping and photography.

So, week one I'll be primarily enjoying the company of my extended family.  Most photography will be indoors or outdoor outings and activities, 95% people shots and portraits.  Week two will be entirely outdoors and mostly landscapes and my immediate family enjoying the parks.

I plan to take my 6D and S100 as a pocketable backup.  My lens choices are:

24 1.4 L (loan offered by a friend)
50 1.4
135 2.0 L
85 1.8
24-105 L
24-70 2.8 II (just purchased yesterday)
70-200 2.8 II
70-300 L (offered as a loan by a friend)
430EXII speedlight
90EX speedlight (used for on-camera optical master/fill)

I would like to limit myself to 2-4 lenses and the speedlites as the other luggage will be considerable.  This is a family trip first and a photography expedition second. When taking overnight hikes and camping, we will leave much of our luggage and gear locked in the rental vehicle, as we will need to travel light.  I'll probably only take 1 or possibly 2 lenses for the long hikes.
sek Cameras: 5D III, 5D II, EOS M  Lenses:  24-70 2.8 II IS, 24-105 f4L, 70-200 f4L IS, 70-200 f2.8L IS II, EF 300 f4L IS, EF 400 5.6L, 300 2.8 IS II, Samyang 14 mm 2.8 Flashes: 580 EX II600EX-RT X 2, ST-E3-RT
Plus lots of stuff that just didn't work for me

scottkinfw

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Re: Kit for California trip
« Reply #20 on: July 03, 2013, 10:06:45 PM »
Disclaimer: my passion is wildlife.

What if you encounter some really great wildlife or something really cool and you just don't have the reach?  The 70-200 2.8 II is very heavy on a hike so this wouldn't be my choice- 70-300.

I am looking into purchasing a 1.4x and/or 2x extender before I leave on this trip.

I'm thinking I could maybe leave the 70-200 and 70-300 home and use my 135L with the extenders for added reach.  I typically don't take a high percentage of shots at longer focal lengths anyway, and this would save quite a bit of space and weight at the expense of some IQ and convince.  Maybe i could just get by with the 24-70 II and 135L + extenders?  Maybe the 50 1.4 as well.
sek Cameras: 5D III, 5D II, EOS M  Lenses:  24-70 2.8 II IS, 24-105 f4L, 70-200 f4L IS, 70-200 f2.8L IS II, EF 300 f4L IS, EF 400 5.6L, 300 2.8 IS II, Samyang 14 mm 2.8 Flashes: 580 EX II600EX-RT X 2, ST-E3-RT
Plus lots of stuff that just didn't work for me

bholliman

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Re: Kit for California trip
« Reply #21 on: July 15, 2013, 10:36:14 PM »
Leaving in a few days for the west coast.  I decided to go with a very minimal kit:

6D, 24-70 2.8 II, 135L, EF 1.4III extender
EOS-M + 22/2
90EX and 430EXII speedlites
Manfroto tripod

I realize I will at times wish I had a shorter fast prime and may regret not having any longer tele lenses for wildlife, but I'll make this work.  Thanks again for the great suggestions and input.
« Last Edit: July 15, 2013, 10:54:28 PM by bholliman »
Bodies:  6D, EOS-M (22/2 and 18-55)
Lenses: Rokinon 14mm 2.8, 35mm 2.0 IS, 85mm 1.8, 100mm 2.8L IS Macro, 135mm 2.0L, 24-70mm 2.8L II, 70-200mm 2.8L IS II, Extenders: EF 1.4xIII, EF 2xIII ; Flash: ST-E3-RT, 600EX-RT (x3)

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Re: Kit for California trip
« Reply #21 on: July 15, 2013, 10:36:14 PM »

distant.star

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Re: Kit for California trip
« Reply #22 on: July 15, 2013, 11:37:32 PM »
.
Sounds like a perfect setup.

Have a great time!!
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Niterider

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Re: Kit for California trip
« Reply #23 on: July 16, 2013, 12:02:52 AM »
Hey! So it looks like you have plenty of advice on the camera gear, but did you want any advice on the area? Santa Barbra/Montecito is a home away from home for me. Amazing hiking and hot springs. If you are really adventurous, camping atop one of the peaks (i.e. Montecito peak) is a breathtaking sight. Especially to see the sunset and the city lights strung along the water for miles.

Anyhow, just let me know if you want me to post what I know. That area is by far my favorite place in California (well Yosemite might come in a close second)  :)


Santa Barbra by Live By The Night, on Flickr

bholliman

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Re: Kit for California trip
« Reply #24 on: July 16, 2013, 09:50:39 PM »
Hey! So it looks like you have plenty of advice on the camera gear, but did you want any advice on the area? Santa Barbra/Montecito is a home away from home for me. Amazing hiking and hot springs. If you are really adventurous, camping atop one of the peaks (i.e. Montecito peak) is a breathtaking sight. Especially to see the sunset and the city lights strung along the water for miles.

Anyhow, just let me know if you want me to post what I know. That area is by far my favorite place in California (well Yosemite might come in a close.

I would love some advice on sights in and around Santa Barbara!  I've been there twice before, but just a day or two each time.  We visited an old Spanish mission,  a botanical garden and hit the beach.  That's the limit of my SB experience so far.

 If you have any other recommendations on great photo sites those would be appreciated also.  Landscape photography is one of my passions.  I plan to get up to early to shoot some sunrises while everybody else is sleeping in.  BTW, love your Montecito Peak at night shot!
« Last Edit: July 16, 2013, 09:53:55 PM by bholliman »
Bodies:  6D, EOS-M (22/2 and 18-55)
Lenses: Rokinon 14mm 2.8, 35mm 2.0 IS, 85mm 1.8, 100mm 2.8L IS Macro, 135mm 2.0L, 24-70mm 2.8L II, 70-200mm 2.8L IS II, Extenders: EF 1.4xIII, EF 2xIII ; Flash: ST-E3-RT, 600EX-RT (x3)

rlaverty

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Re: Kit for California trip
« Reply #25 on: July 17, 2013, 08:53:12 AM »
Take the boat to the channel islands!

Niterider

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Re: Kit for California trip
« Reply #26 on: July 17, 2013, 12:36:54 PM »

I would love some advice on sights in and around Santa Barbara!  I've been there twice before, but just a day or two each time.  We visited an old Spanish mission,  a botanical garden and hit the beach.  That's the limit of my SB experience so far.

 If you have any other recommendations on great photo sites those would be appreciated also.  Landscape photography is one of my passions.  I plan to get up to early to shoot some sunrises while everybody else is sleeping in.  BTW, love your Montecito Peak at night shot!

Right on, well I'll do my best to suggest some places to visit. For places local to Santa Barbara, one is the Sunken Gardens (which I think is what you were referring to by the botanical gardens). The community college overlooks the harbor and from the overlook point, you can get a really cool shot of Shoreline Drive/E Cabrillo Blvd. There is Sterns Warf of course, but during the day, it is packed with tourists. The Zoo is pretty well known, but honestly, I've never been. The Santa Barbara Cemetery is pretty neat to see if you are just passing by. You can park along the road anywhere in the cemetery and walk around.

But my favorite place is Montecito. If I remember correctly, Sunday mornings (around 8 or 9) are car day. Along Coast Village Rd. you can see Mercedes SLS, Ferraris, Maseratis, ect. Last time I was there, I saw Katy Perry driving through in her Maserati. West Beach in SB is iconic, but Butterfly Beach is a bit less busy. It is across the street from the 4 seasons hotel and down the road from Ty Warner's home (which you can walk by on the Channel Dr. bike trail and check it out). If you go to Butterfly Beach, park and head down onto the sand. Then go east past the private club and find a sweet spot to lay out a towel and enjoy the coast. This part of the beach is not private, but mostly used by locals so it will not be busy.

For hiking and hot springs, my favorite is at the top of Hot Springs Road. You won't be able to park near the top, but find parking and start hiking up Hot Springs Road. You will pass some seriously expensive houses and your more likely to see a Bentley or Rolls Royce than an average car. When your getting near the end of the road and near the start of the hiking trail, you'll get the feeling like your walking towards someone's private driveway, but dont let that stop you. Eventually you will see the start of the trail. If you take the wide trail, it will take you to the Hot Springs. There will be signs saying stay away, but ignore them. The hot springs may not be set up or there will be people there, so you can continue on the trail to Saddle Rock. What a lookout from that view! If you are just going to head there, you can take a more direct, but steeper trail from the beginning. Also, I would recommend getting the route so you dont get lost, but you can take the same trail head to hike to Montecito Peak (I'm glad you like the picture!).

If you have time, the Channel Islands are definitely worth going! A good sunset picture can be taken at Father Serra Cross in North Ventura. If you do the very short hike by parking before the gate on Ferro Dr., you can stay there after sunset to avoid being locked in. And if you have a lot of time, the town of Ojai is neat.

I'm sure there is a bunch I am forgetting, but hopefully this info is useful. If you have any questions, feel free to ask!

RLPhoto

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Re: Kit for California trip
« Reply #27 on: July 17, 2013, 04:28:02 PM »
I'd travel light, especially in the back country.

6D
17-40L <---- Can't skip an UW. Rent one.
50mm 1.4
70-300L
430EX II
Filters & Travel Tripod.

I made a similar trip to Europe and found I never used my 24L II, 24-105L or my Speedlite.
« Last Edit: July 17, 2013, 04:30:31 PM by RLPhoto »

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Re: Kit for California trip
« Reply #27 on: July 17, 2013, 04:28:02 PM »

bholliman

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Re: Kit for California trip
« Reply #28 on: July 17, 2013, 04:30:11 PM »

Right on, well I'll do my best to suggest some places to visit. For places local to Santa Barbara, one is the Sunken Gardens (which I think is what you were referring to by the botanical gardens). The community college overlooks the harbor and from the overlook point, you can get a really cool shot of Shoreline Drive/E Cabrillo Blvd. There is Sterns Warf of course, but during the day, it is packed with tourists. The Zoo is pretty well known, but honestly, I've never been. The Santa Barbara Cemetery is pretty neat to see if you are just passing by. You can park along the road anywhere in the cemetery and walk around.

But my favorite place is Montecito. If I remember correctly, Sunday mornings (around 8 or 9) are car day. Along Coast Village Rd. you can see Mercedes SLS, Ferraris, Maseratis, ect. Last time I was there, I saw Katy Perry driving through in her Maserati. West Beach in SB is iconic, but Butterfly Beach is a bit less busy. It is across the street from the 4 seasons hotel and down the road from Ty Warner's home (which you can walk by on the Channel Dr. bike trail and check it out). If you go to Butterfly Beach, park and head down onto the sand. Then go east past the private club and find a sweet spot to lay out a towel and enjoy the coast. This part of the beach is not private, but mostly used by locals so it will not be busy.

For hiking and hot springs, my favorite is at the top of Hot Springs Road. You won't be able to park near the top, but find parking and start hiking up Hot Springs Road. You will pass some seriously expensive houses and your more likely to see a Bentley or Rolls Royce than an average car. When your getting near the end of the road and near the start of the hiking trail, you'll get the feeling like your walking towards someone's private driveway, but dont let that stop you. Eventually you will see the start of the trail. If you take the wide trail, it will take you to the Hot Springs. There will be signs saying stay away, but ignore them. The hot springs may not be set up or there will be people there, so you can continue on the trail to Saddle Rock. What a lookout from that view! If you are just going to head there, you can take a more direct, but steeper trail from the beginning. Also, I would recommend getting the route so you dont get lost, but you can take the same trail head to hike to Montecito Peak (I'm glad you like the picture!).

If you have time, the Channel Islands are definitely worth going! A good sunset picture can be taken at Father Serra Cross in North Ventura. If you do the very short hike by parking before the gate on Ferro Dr., you can stay there after sunset to avoid being locked in. And if you have a lot of time, the town of Ojai is neat.

I'm sure there is a bunch I am forgetting, but hopefully this info is useful. If you have any questions, feel free to ask!

Awesome!  Thanks for all the suggestions, this will give us plenty to do.  I'm getting excited about getting out there. We are scheduled to fly west on Friday afternoon.  I may have some additional questions when we get there.

P.S. Enjoyed your Flicker album - lots of great landscapes there! 

Thanks again!
Bodies:  6D, EOS-M (22/2 and 18-55)
Lenses: Rokinon 14mm 2.8, 35mm 2.0 IS, 85mm 1.8, 100mm 2.8L IS Macro, 135mm 2.0L, 24-70mm 2.8L II, 70-200mm 2.8L IS II, Extenders: EF 1.4xIII, EF 2xIII ; Flash: ST-E3-RT, 600EX-RT (x3)

distant.star

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Re: Kit for California trip
« Reply #29 on: July 17, 2013, 06:10:56 PM »
.
I'd second the Santa Barbara Cemetery suggestion.

It's easy to get to and sits on a rise (below Montecito) above the city coastline. There are a good variety of trees (some tropical, some rugged) that can be used in foreground. If it's clear, you can put the Channel Islands in the background.

Early morning sun will be at your back looking at the city shoreline from the cemetery. At sunset, you'll shoot into it. Also, there are a lot of large shore birds flying along the coast there, so you may want to try to incorporate them in pictures. The Andree Clark Bird Refuge is very nearby and may provide some landscape/nature shots in itself. Check into it as I haven't tried there.
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Re: Kit for California trip
« Reply #29 on: July 17, 2013, 06:10:56 PM »