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Author Topic: India Tripod  (Read 1690 times)

JPAZ

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India Tripod
« on: November 16, 2013, 06:52:36 PM »
All.  I am planning a trip to India (mostly Southern India but will go to Jaipur and Agra as well) in January.  I've done enough traveling to appreciate minimizing the gear I'll bring.  My present thoughts are to bring my "travel triad" of 17-40, 24-105, and 70-200 f/4 IS.  I can get all of these with my 5diii into my shoulder/messenger bag and hence won't be the biggest flashing "please steal my camera stuff" out there.  And, this all goes nicely into my carry-on luggage.

Now, my question:  Since I plan to be at the Taj Mahal at both sunrise and sunset and since all this gear is f/4 at the fastest, should I bring my tripod or monopod?  This would probably need to be in checked baggage (airport security is so variable).  Then, I would need to have checked luggage.  Worth the hassle?  And, does anyone know about tripods at a place like the Taj Mahal?  Again, hand holding is more discreet.  Is there a restriction or a fee involved for a tripod?  What about a monopod?  The f/4 does not otherwise worry me since the high ISO performance of the camera is good, but a longer exposure has its benefits as well.

Any insight and any experience at that location is appreciated.

JP
« Last Edit: November 16, 2013, 06:57:11 PM by JPAZ »
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India Tripod
« on: November 16, 2013, 06:52:36 PM »

privatebydesign

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Re: India Tripod
« Reply #1 on: November 16, 2013, 07:15:38 PM »
Absolutely, with no hesitation DO NOT take a tripod, you will not be allowed to use it, even from across the river, tripod use is 100% banned and enforced. Armed guards will enforce the no tripod rule pretty much anywhere you want to use a tripod in India.

WPJ

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Re: India Tripod
« Reply #2 on: November 16, 2013, 08:26:06 PM »
Absolutely, with no hesitation DO NOT take a tripod, you will not be allowed to use it, even from across the river, tripod use is 100% banned and enforced. Armed guards will enforce the no tripod rule pretty much anywhere you want to use a tripod in India.

just wondering why is that?

privatebydesign

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Re: India Tripod
« Reply #3 on: November 16, 2013, 08:55:08 PM »
Absolutely, with no hesitation DO NOT take a tripod, you will not be allowed to use it, even from across the river, tripod use is 100% banned and enforced. Armed guards will enforce the no tripod rule pretty much anywhere you want to use a tripod in India.

just wondering why is that?

Haven't got the faintest idea, but they border on fanaticism about it, I traveled there for a couple of months last year and spent three days at the Taj Mahal. Tripods were an absolute no no even at the good views outside across the river and next to the temple next to it on the riverbank. Fully enforced bans at most of the big tourist spots too, though some places did allow video tickets (for ten to twenty times the regular admission) some of which allowed a tripod though none of the "main" attractions do.

Oh I forgot, the one place that was very relaxed about tripods, and I thought they would be the worst for cameras in general, was Harmandir Sahib, The Golden Temple, in Amritsar, a truly humbling experience and place, the equal of which I have not yet found in a thriving and active religious epicenter.

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Re: India Tripod
« Reply #4 on: November 16, 2013, 09:25:34 PM »
Interesting, monopods were also a nono?

rpt

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Re: India Tripod
« Reply #5 on: November 16, 2013, 11:37:13 PM »
You could go with a string monopod...

privatebydesign

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Re: India Tripod
« Reply #6 on: November 16, 2013, 11:58:42 PM »
Interesting, monopods were also a nono?

I didn't have one, or see anybody using one, going by the prevailing attitude I'd be surprised if they were allowed.

You could go with a string monopod...

You could, but I wouldn't be surprised if you still got in trouble, and it can be complicated trouble too. There were certainly enough armed security for me to not push my luck more than a couple of times. You are not dealing with officious park rangers in these places but armed military that have the power to detain and deport you, not something I wanted to play with too hard.

Best advice, make arrangements to work without external camera support, it isn't that difficult.

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Re: India Tripod
« Reply #6 on: November 16, 2013, 11:58:42 PM »

JPAZ

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Re: India Tripod
« Reply #7 on: November 17, 2013, 12:10:47 AM »
Do they restrict "white lenses" or that sort of thing?  Was in Egypt a couple of years back and one member of our group could not take photos 'cause the guards deemed his equipment was "professional" and he needed a government permit.  He really only probably needed to bribe them (suspect their real motive) but I want to try to be relatively inconspicuous.
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privatebydesign

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Re: India Tripod
« Reply #8 on: November 17, 2013, 12:39:14 AM »
Do they restrict "white lenses" or that sort of thing?  Was in Egypt a couple of years back and one member of our group could not take photos 'cause the guards deemed his equipment was "professional" and he needed a government permit.  He really only probably needed to bribe them (suspect their real motive) but I want to try to be relatively inconspicuous.

Not that I noticed, but strictly speaking they don't allow bags in there, but they generally do allow smaller bags. I had a ThinkTank Retrospective 20, a 1Ds MkIII and a 24-70 and had zero issues anywhere, however I no longer travel with three 2.8 zooms and multiple "backup" primes as, after a lot of trips, I realised I personally just didn't use them enough.

The Taj Mahal is the pinnacle, although the tripod rule is enforced in other places, I saw many people with two and three cameras, one Nikon guy I kept noticing had three, a D800 with a 14-24, a D4 with a 70-200 f2.8 and a Leica, all around his neck! Nobody batted an eye at that.

When I was last in Egypt, Israel and Jordan, 2006, I was still carrying three 2.8 zooms, and three 1 series bodies, two 1VHS's and a 1D, although I had heard of that "pro" issue I never encountered it, I shot extensively in the Sinai Peninsula, Southern Israel and Petra in Jordan.

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Re: India Tripod
« Reply #9 on: November 20, 2013, 03:39:28 AM »
Things you need to remember is that most places do not allow and enforce the NO TRIPOD rule. Also you can not take them on internal flights as hand luggage...   If you want to be cheeky, get a gorila-pod. ;)

I tend to pack small and light when travelling around, and if i want a long exposure, i find a wall, chair, table, rest it on my jacket/bag on the floor etc... as tripods are troublesome and bring A LOT of attention.

Have fun, enjoy it! For the Taj...  go really early and get in there early when it is empty!

ps - I live in south India.
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Re: India Tripod
« Reply #10 on: November 20, 2013, 07:34:42 AM »
Things you need to remember is that most places do not allow and enforce the NO TRIPOD rule. Also you can not take them on internal flights as hand luggage...   If you want to be cheeky, get a gorila-pod. ;)

I tend to pack small and light when travelling around, and if i want a long exposure, i find a wall, chair, table, rest it on my jacket/bag on the floor etc... as tripods are troublesome and bring A LOT of attention.

Have fun, enjoy it! For the Taj...  go really early and get in there early when it is empty!

ps - I live in south India.

Quite correct. Tripod is usually a no-no in India if you are visiting places of historical interest so, don't get a TSE lens if you plan to get one.

The Security personnel are usually paranoid about allowing anything that includes metal pipes. Sometime I curse them but given the state of security in the country, probably it is all for the best.

+1 on the gorilla-pod or a small table-top tripod, I doubt anyone will complain.

You will probably find that there is a fee for using your cameras in most places (considerably high for non-Indians) and there is a different fee for still cameras and video cameras (probably they haven't figured out that Canon is dishing out video in its DSLRs  ;D) so simply tell them - "I'm not going to shoot a film" and hold up your camera showing them it is a DSLR. 

Have fun!
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Re: India Tripod
« Reply #10 on: November 20, 2013, 07:34:42 AM »