September 16, 2014, 09:59:18 PM

Author Topic: Camera bag for camping  (Read 8514 times)

NancyP

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Re: Camera bag for camping
« Reply #60 on: August 04, 2014, 12:54:21 PM »
Very interesting, Lloyd. What is the maximum weight that you have carried with the ThinkTank belt/ Mariposa combination, in the backpack part and on the belt part?

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Re: Camera bag for camping
« Reply #60 on: August 04, 2014, 12:54:21 PM »

NancyP

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Re: Camera bag for camping
« Reply #61 on: August 04, 2014, 03:20:35 PM »
Another question, Lloyd  - where do you stash your tripod on the Mariposa for easy access?

Lloyd

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Re: Camera bag for camping
« Reply #62 on: August 05, 2014, 12:05:32 AM »
Very interesting, Lloyd. What is the maximum weight that you have carried with the ThinkTank belt/ Mariposa combination, in the backpack part and on the belt part?
I looked at my last spreadsheet and with ultralight tent, bag, clothes, cooking gear, food, water, 60D, 10-22mm and 400mm 5.6 it shows around 30lbs.  This is my weight for winter in Texas or for September in the Wind River range in Wyoming. Camera gear totals about 6+ pounds. In reality the whole pack with belt  probably ended up a few pounds more than 30.   The above weight also includes a cheapo 1.6 lb aluminum tripod that folds up to about 15" and fits in the long side pocket. It should be noted that my Mariposa has two small side pockets on top of each other on one side and a long pocket on the other side. I am able to put the tripod and my six moon trekker tent in the long pocket. The ultralight route means some compromises and in my case the tripod was one of them.  If I am going to a place with distant wildlife or observing climbers I may also take my 6 oz lens2scope which turns the 400mm into a spotting scope but taxes the cheapo tripod. I also substitute the 10-22 for my 40mm or 18-55 EFS for regular snapshots.
« Last Edit: August 05, 2014, 12:19:55 AM by Lloyd »
5D mkIII, 60D, 20D; 24-70mm f/2.8L; 24-105mm F4L; 70-200mm f/2.8L IS;  TS-E 17mm f/4L; Canon FD 800mm 5.6L; Canon FD 55mm f/1.2;  10-22mm f/3.5-4.5; Canon extenders 1.4X II and 2X II; Canon  580EX and 430EX

NancyP

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Re: Camera bag for camping
« Reply #63 on: August 05, 2014, 10:50:58 AM »
Thanks! The 400 f/5.6 rides on the belt, I presume. That's  a great combo, 400 5.6, 10-22, and 60D. I have been using 60D, 15-85 as a one-lens landscape/plant/general nature set up (note that in the Ozarks where I shoot, there aren't many grand vistas), and adding the 400 5.6 if I think I am going to have good birding. I thought the tripod might fit in the long pocket, as shown in the older reviews of the Mariposa, but now the Mariposa Plus is shown on the GG site with 2 short pockets each side. I suppose it might be possible to get the old long pocket substituted in by the manufacturer.

My luxury light tripod is the Feisol CT3442 (no center column) plus Arca-Swiss p0 ball head, approximately 3.0 # with screw clamp, and approximately 19" long with legs folded over the (rather small) head. I haven't tried it for longer exposure astrophotography yet. My heavy duty tripod is a very similar style but larger diameter Feisol CT3742, 4# by itself.

Lloyd

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Re: Camera bag for camping
« Reply #64 on: August 05, 2014, 01:07:35 PM »
Thanks! The 400 f/5.6 rides on the belt, I presume. That's  a great combo, 400 5.6, 10-22, and 60D. I have been using 60D, 15-85 as a one-lens landscape/plant/general nature set up (note that in the Ozarks where I shoot, there aren't many grand vistas), and adding the 400 5.6 if I think I am going to have good birding. I thought the tripod might fit in the long pocket, as shown in the older reviews of the Mariposa, but now the Mariposa Plus is shown on the GG site with 2 short pockets each side. I suppose it might be possible to get the old long pocket substituted in by the manufacturer.
I put the 400 in a Think Tank lens changer pouch or Skin 75 on the belt.  The skin is significantly lighter, but does not offer the protection of the pouch. The larger holsters for your camera will fit the camera with the lens attached in the pouch temporarily, but, as I recall, it protrudes enough that you can't zip it up.  It shouldn't fall out if just walking around or standing, but it is not really a secure place to put it in for a long hike.  I would test it for you, but the 400 I use belongs to a friend.  We loan each other camera lens for such trips.  As it is not my lens, I am more likely to use the pouch instead of the skin due to the pouches superior protection.

My only problem with using the belt system and the pack is when I have to to cross some creek in a wilderness area.  Most of the time I find myself crossing using a downed tree and this can be a bit disconcerting even if you don't have a pack.  But with a pack and camera gear it becomes a real problem that I have not totally solved.  I bring along a large light weight water proof bag for my camera gear in in these circumstances, but the problem is what to do with the bag as you cross the river.  It is best to save room in the pack for such situations.  If you don't have enough room, which is usually the case for me on a trip over several days, then you have to carry the waterproof bag filled with gear separately.  If you attach it to the pack it can swing around and totally screw with your balance.  If you hand hold the bag, you lose a hand to grab onto something to maintain your balance. Usually, I don't hike alone in such situations and I have a friend go first and hand the camera bag over to them, but this only works well for very small crossings.  The only other way is to throw a line across the river and use a carabiner to slid the bag along the line to the person on the other side.  I have not had to do this yet and it comes with its own risks as I am not too confident of the strength of the attachment points for these light weight waterproof bags when carrying 5-6 pounds of  camera gear.  I have also thought about getting small waterproof bags, or even heavy duty zip lock bags, for each lens and the camera that will fit around the lens or camera while it is in the holster/pouch.  However, whether this would survive a fall from a log into a river/creek is questionable and with the pouches/holsters on you become much wider which further complicates maneuvering through a downed tree across a river.  So far, that is why I have stayed with putting the stuff in one bag and getting it across separately. Perhaps if I had better balance I would not be as anal about this.
5D mkIII, 60D, 20D; 24-70mm f/2.8L; 24-105mm F4L; 70-200mm f/2.8L IS;  TS-E 17mm f/4L; Canon FD 800mm 5.6L; Canon FD 55mm f/1.2;  10-22mm f/3.5-4.5; Canon extenders 1.4X II and 2X II; Canon  580EX and 430EX

NancyP

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Re: Camera bag for camping
« Reply #65 on: August 05, 2014, 01:24:32 PM »
Thanks, Lloyd. I tend to hike with the camera attached to the Cotton Carrier vest, so it is available quickly and its weight is centered. I can still hold hiking poles, etc. That doesn't solve the stream-crossing problem. I haven't addressed this yet because the streams I am likely to cross are tiny, and if worse came to worse, I would take off the camera, stash it in a dry sack, go across without camera, empty pack sufficiently to fit camera in, then fetch the camera in dry bag inside pack, rearrange on the other side.

Lloyd

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Re: Camera bag for camping
« Reply #66 on: August 08, 2014, 11:38:42 AM »
Nancy, I just received the following review of the new version of the Mariposa and it appears that they are retaining the large pocket on one side and the two smaller pockets on the other side.  http://southwestultralight.blogspot.com/2014/08/first-look-gossamer-gear-2014-mariposa.html It also notes that the newly designed shoulder straps are more female friendly.  It also has a system for attaching hiking poles that you may be able to adapt to hold your tripod. The full description of the new model can be found at the Gossamer web site at http://gossamergear.com/packs/backpacks/mariposa-ultralight-backpack-all-bundle-568.html  By the way, although I live in the same city as the Gossamer gear folks, I have no interest in the company other than as a consumer.

Take care, Lloyd
5D mkIII, 60D, 20D; 24-70mm f/2.8L; 24-105mm F4L; 70-200mm f/2.8L IS;  TS-E 17mm f/4L; Canon FD 800mm 5.6L; Canon FD 55mm f/1.2;  10-22mm f/3.5-4.5; Canon extenders 1.4X II and 2X II; Canon  580EX and 430EX

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Re: Camera bag for camping
« Reply #66 on: August 08, 2014, 11:38:42 AM »

NancyP

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Re: Camera bag for camping
« Reply #67 on: August 08, 2014, 07:05:08 PM »
Thanks for sending the review and info! It looks quite interesting.
I am quite impressed by the number of "cottage industry" order-by-mail backpacks out there, made or designed in the USA.
Ultralights:
Hyperlight Mountain Gear
ULA
Zpack
6 Moons
Gossamer Gear
Zimmerbuilt
Light modular external frame, can be upgraded to "hunter meat hauling"
Paradox
External frame hunter meat haulers, heavy-duty and heavy:
Stone Glacier
Mystery Ranch

My first step is to get measured at REI and try a bunch of backpacks, weighted, in the store and see what fits, what doesn't, what options are awful, etc.  Simplicity seems desirable.

RustyTheGeek

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Re: Camera bag for camping
« Reply #68 on: August 09, 2014, 04:28:35 PM »
Nice list NancyP.  Good luck!  Keep us posted on what you discover.
Yes, but what would  surapon  say ??  :D

NancyP

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Re: Camera bag for camping
« Reply #69 on: August 23, 2014, 11:46:07 AM »
I decided to do some bricks and mortar shopping to get an idea of what I like and don't like. I have a torso length of 14", apparently, because women's packs starting at 15" are not comfortable. That limits me somewhat in the major manufacturers - I checked out Osprey, Gregory, Kelty, REI house brand packs because those were the packs that I could try out in person. I checked out kids' adjustable packs as well. Going ultralight may be something I do later on, when I am more experienced. The finalists were Osprey Ariel 65 XS women's pack, adjusted to minimum 14" torso height, and Gregory Wander 70 youth pack, likewise adjusted to 14". I walked around in the store, did squats, leaned over, etc for 30 minutes for each pack with a 27 pound load, and they both felt fine. They are 3.5 pound packs. Gregory Ariel was on sale for $210.00, Gregory Wander was full price at $200.00, and the Ariel had more convenient access to main compartment and had water bladder access external to pack body (the bladder slot is between pack backframe and pack body, so you could refill the bladder without having to unpack and repack the main chamber of the pack). Ariel also had a more comprehensive compression strap system.

Now that I have a pack that allows me to carry 30# comfortably, I can start training with graduated weight and length hikes. If I ever go look at ultralight packs, I might go for ULA Circuit, which is made in a kids' adjustable version, really the only ultralight pack with 14" torso capability, or get custom made . But that's in the future, and may never happen.

dcm

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Re: Camera bag for camping
« Reply #70 on: August 23, 2014, 06:00:32 PM »
I like your approach NancyP.  I've been using Gregory Z30 and Z45 packs for my hiking/fishing/photography trips and recommend this approach to others.  The challenge has been how to carry the camera gear in/on the pack. 

I'm going to try a new approach on my weekend trips this fall.  I carried my M/22 last year and that makes a nice minimum carry, but I missed the wide/telephoto I got carrying my 6D/17-40/70-200f4/1.4x combo.  I picked up the EF-M 11-22 earlier this year and recently added the EF-M 55-200.  The M combo (1080g) is less than half the 6D combo (2455g).   My existing collection of bags and cases didn't fit these well (with a few extra batteries and CPLs).  While getting an aluminum tube made for a pair of new fly rods, I decided to try a rod tube for my camera gear.  They all slide nicely into a 3" paper mailing tube so I had a 15" long rod tube made, brass caps with an O-ring seal to handle the typical afternoon showers in the Rockies.  Weighs less than a pound (400g) while the gear inside weighs more than twice that.  My wife stitched up a few bags from some extra lens cleaning cloths to provide protection inside the tube and I added velcro tabs to close them.  This looks like the smallest and strongest solution possible with little wasted space.  Initial tests look promising, sits nicely in the pack or an outer pocket.
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NancyP

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Re: Camera bag for camping
« Reply #71 on: August 24, 2014, 08:53:44 AM »
dcm, that is a nice simple solution. Does it shift and rattle any while walking with it?

dcm

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Re: Camera bag for camping
« Reply #72 on: August 24, 2014, 01:29:17 PM »
dcm, that is a nice simple solution. Does it shift and rattle any while walking with it?

Nope, not in my tests.  The fit is fairly tight (the M barely fits) and the bags (like rod socks) eliminate any noise or wear from contact with the tube or other items in the tube.  The seams at the bottom of the socks and the fold from the velcro closure at the top provide padding between items.  Padding on both ends of the tube and the close fit keep it from shifting much, even if you invert the tube.  When I attach a camera/lens combo to the pack strap I will likely stuff a sock or ziplock filled with air in the tube to fill the void, even in a vertical orientation.  Both horizontal and vertical external attachments are possible with my pack, internal will be vertical.

It's still in the experiment stage.  My first hikes are a few weekends away.   I'll know better after several miles on the trail and post an update then.  It might be a reasonable option for other compact camera systems, but I don't think it will scale up to DSLRs and L series lenses.
« Last Edit: August 24, 2014, 01:34:21 PM by dcm »
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Re: Camera bag for camping
« Reply #72 on: August 24, 2014, 01:29:17 PM »

Vern

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Re: Camera bag for camping
« Reply #73 on: August 24, 2014, 05:30:00 PM »
Per others: if you are backpacking, get a great pack for that and put your camera gear in bags to go inside. I carry a Dana Design pack (big green one in front, pictured below) that fits like a glove. On this hike (round trip of Syncline loop at Islands in the Sky) we spent one night on the trail and I carried a 5DMKII, 70-200 2.8II, 16-35 II, 24 TS II, 300 2.8II, 1.4X and 2X converters + Gitzo tripod and ball head plus accessories. It was a dry camp, so everyone was loaded. One innovation (?) to carry my tripod and access my camera was to place a large "S"-hook above the right shoulder so I could hang the tripod with camera mounted and have the weight carried on my hips. I can snap quick pics w/o removing the tripod from the hook, or easily take it down w/o removing my pack. I've carried this set-up for up to 4 night outings when we had access to water good enough to filter. I also carried food for everyone, clothes etc. though I had my sons and a friend to help with the tents. This was a rough hike (2nd photo shows a downhill section that was the worst), but I felt fine with this gear b/c I had a great pack. I am 6'2" but only 160 lbs, so not a muscle-man (I'm far left in the 1st shot). Last shot is inside the Syncline crater - kind of reminded me of Mordor (pano w 24 TSII). I'd rather handle a heavy pack than not get the shot.
1Dx, 5DMKIII, 600 II, 300 II, 200 f2, 135 f2, 85 1.2 II, 100 2.8 IS, 24TS II, 70-200 II, 24-70 II, 16-35 II

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Re: Camera bag for camping
« Reply #74 on: August 24, 2014, 06:42:46 PM »
... I decided to try a rod tube for my camera gear... 

That's a great idea. I'm going to try this also. Thanks for sharing, dcm.

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Re: Camera bag for camping
« Reply #74 on: August 24, 2014, 06:42:46 PM »