October 20, 2014, 05:57:50 AM

Author Topic: Alaska Vacation Suggestions  (Read 600 times)

bholliman

  • 1D Mark IV
  • ******
  • Posts: 763
    • View Profile
Alaska Vacation Suggestions
« on: March 01, 2014, 11:15:47 AM »
I will be traveling with my wife and teen-aged son to Alaska for a two week vacation this summer.  This will be our first trip to the 48th state and we probably won't be able to return for a number of years, so we want to see as much as possible in the time we have.  We plan to fly into Fairbanks/Anchorage or maybe Juneau, rent a vehicle and drive from there. 

From what I've read, it appears most of the attractions are in the south eastern portion of the state between Fairbanks and Anchorage.  We would also like to see Juneau and Glacier Bay, but they seem to be a long way from the other tourist areas. Some of our "must see" attractions are: Denali NP/Mt. McKinley, the Kenai peninsula and Kenai Fords NP.  We would like to see as much wildlife (primarily bears, moose, elk, wolves, etc.) as possible.  We enjoy hiking and spending time outdoors.

This will be a family vacation first and photography expedition second.  My wife and son are pretty tolerant of my hobby, but I can't get too carried away with it and keep family harmony.

Regarding photography gear, my equipment list is below.  At this point I'm inclined to bring my 6D, 24-70, 70-200 and maybe the 100 Macro.  The Rokinon 14mm is another possibility.  Even with my 2x extender, I am worried that I won't have enough "reach" for some of the wildlife due to the vast distances.  I might consider renting a long tele lens for the trip.  I'll take my EOS-M and EOS adapter along as a back-up body and occasional use when I don't want to carry a heavy DSLR and lenses.

Thanks!
« Last Edit: March 01, 2014, 03:36:58 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)

canon rumors FORUM

Alaska Vacation Suggestions
« on: March 01, 2014, 11:15:47 AM »

Cory

  • EOS M2
  • ****
  • Posts: 240
    • View Profile
Re: Alaska Vacation Suggestions
« Reply #1 on: March 01, 2014, 11:46:13 AM »
To see what you might be in for feel free to check out my Alaskan pictures at www.flickr.com/photos/corysteiner/
Sounds like you're off to a good start.
70D, 10-18, 35 2.0 IS, Sigma 50 1.4 Art, 100 2.0 and 200 2.8II
EOS M/22 2.0
430EXII

JPAZ

  • 6D
  • *****
  • Posts: 566
  • If only I knew what I was doing.....
    • View Profile
Re: Alaska Vacation Suggestions
« Reply #2 on: March 01, 2014, 12:57:31 PM »
Depending on whether your budget allows, I can heartily recommend Camp Denali Lodge.  You cannot drive into the park on your own.  The interior buses are an option but the Camp Denali bus is more comfortable and less crowded and is art of the package.  The place is spectacular and even the views from the place are amazing.  Add a few of the included outings (multiple hikes with naturalists every day) and you will be in photography heaven.  A 3 or 4 day adventure there will really give you onsite into the tundra and mountains to add to the typical southeastern water based adventures.  Do bring a tripod and CPL's for your gear and consider ND filters.  And bring something longer because there is an incredible amount of wildlife in Denali, but they are not too close.  Found myself using the 100-400 (sometimes with a 1.4x) on the tripod a lot.  If I were to do it again (actually that should be "when" not" if"), I'll rent a 300 f/2.8 with a 2x or longer prime like a 500 or 600 with IS.
5d Mkiii; Eos-M; too many lenses; 430 EXii and a whole lot of stuff

bholliman

  • 1D Mark IV
  • ******
  • Posts: 763
    • View Profile
Re: Alaska Vacation Suggestions
« Reply #3 on: March 01, 2014, 09:51:39 PM »
To see what you might be in for feel free to check out my Alaskan pictures at www.flickr.com/photos/corysteiner/
Sounds like you're off to a good start.

Awesome eagle shots, what camera and lens did you use?  What parts of Alaska did you see?

Depending on whether your budget allows, I can heartily recommend Camp Denali Lodge.  You cannot drive into the park on your own.  The interior buses are an option but the Camp Denali bus is more comfortable and less crowded and is art of the package.  The place is spectacular and even the views from the place are amazing.  Add a few of the included outings (multiple hikes with naturalists every day) and you will be in photography heaven.  A 3 or 4 day adventure there will really give you onsite into the tundra and mountains to add to the typical southeastern water based adventures.  Do bring a tripod and CPL's for your gear and consider ND filters.  And bring something longer because there is an incredible amount of wildlife in Denali, but they are not too close.  Found myself using the 100-400 (sometimes with a 1.4x) on the tripod a lot.  If I were to do it again (actually that should be "when" not" if"), I'll rent a 300 f/2.8 with a 2x or longer prime like a 500 or 600 with IS.

Camp Denali Lodge looks like a great option, we will have to see if we can fit that into our trip budget; I hope we can.

I'm still debating long tele lens options.  A 300mm f/2.8 II and 2x III would be awesome, but renting for two weeks would cost as much as it would to buy 35mm f/2 IS (on my short list of desired lenses).  I may rent one for a shorter stretch or settle for an f/4 tele.  I'm also considering buying a Tamron 150-600, which should be long enough. 
« Last Edit: March 01, 2014, 09:54:13 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)

canon rumors FORUM

Re: Alaska Vacation Suggestions
« Reply #3 on: March 01, 2014, 09:51:39 PM »