Hubby often hikes with me but up until now hiking with a camera has not been at the top of his list. On a recent trip to Aspen, however, Steven came with camera in hand ! This is the start of his practice drills as we are going off to Portugal in September, his initiation into travel photography.
We hiked the iconic Maroon Bells (www.http://www.fs.usda.gov/Internet/FSE_DOCUMENTS/fsbdev3_001151.pdf). I decided to use my new Canon Rebel Sl1 ultra light with a 40mm "pancake" lens (super thin, super light), figuring that would be perfect for the wide angle shots. Steven took along the Canon 60D with 28-200 zoom. It turned out to be the perfect combination.
If there are 2 of you shooting, don't bother with redundant lenses, especially if you are hiking 8 miles, 1200 vertical, and have to carry equipment.
Use the monopod with a great quality ballhead instead of the tripod. Saves weight, and you need the monopod now and then for the hike anyway.
Yes, put a polarizer on each lens.
If you really really want the shot, auto bracket the exposure for at least 3 shots. That probably is true anytime, but especially if you know you worked really hard to get to a place, and it is unlikely you can return to redo the shots if you mess up the first time. We took 3-brackets for almost every shot. It wasn't that we intended to HDR the entire album - it just added a sense of security that we'd get at least a few good shots.
I normally don't like HDR when the outcome is so obvious - overly intense colors or excessive clarity. But I couldn't resist tossing a few of these extra shots into Photomatix Pro (my post-production HRD software of choice). I like these! I think what helped and, so, my final"lesson learned" is that I did small increments for the bracketing at half-stops x 3, so the HRD is a little more subtle.
Here ya go. The Lake reflection shot is from my Canon Rebel SL1. The Maroon Bells North shot is Steven's, using the Canon 60D. I'll post 4-5 more shots into the "New Additions" Collection as soon as I find some time to roll through the 300 + shots we took, combined on this hike.
As always, I would appreciate your comments. This photo thing is a never ending journey of learning, and I truly do learn from your commnets and suggestions.