What photography travel gear do I use?
I’ll tell you!
Camera and lenses
My primary camera and lens are a Canon 6D and 24-105mm lens. It has some zoom and handles macro shots pretty well so I use it for most everything. I can even do some night photography with it though, I do prefer a wide angle lens for landscape and night photography. I’m planning for that to be the second lens I bring with me wherever I go in the future. I just have to save up the money to get it. Right now if I bring a secondary lens it’s the 50 mm. It’s the one that sees as close to the human eye as we can get so it’s a good prime lens. It’s also really good for portraits, which I can shoot wherever I go. (let me know if you need one 🙂
On a recent waterfall trip my camera took a tumble and my lens became unusable and needed repair. I’m so glad I had a backup lens for this reason and for the reasons above. I also had a backup camera because my husband was shooting with me. He had the lenses I couldn’t use with the ND filter. So glad I didn’t have to stop shooting that day because of an accident.
I’m a sucker for any kind of long exposure so it’s important to bring a tripod. A tripod that’s sturdy and fits in my carry on bag is a must. If I’m hiking sometimes I can get away with a small gorillapod. If I forget my tripod I have to rely on trees and rocks for a natural tripod. It can work but you have to be really careful the camera is secure and doesn’t move at all. You also don’t want it to fall. Remember that camera tumble above? I thought my tripod was secure and my lens is now in the shop to get out the sand. Be careful out there with or without a tripod.
My travel tripod of choice is this one.* My ONLY cautions with it are that you need to add a hook to weight it for windy conditions and if you don’t open the legs a bit wider it’s not as secure as some other models. It is however, a very reasonable price and weight for travel. Easy to use and pop up in a hurry. Just make sure it’s totally stable. But accidents happen as nature moves around you.
Another item that is key for daytime long exposure shots is an ND filter (Neutral Density). I never leave home without it, you never know when you’ll come across a waterfall or some cool clouds. I use anywhere from a 3 stop to a 10 stop.
One that has worked really well for me I ordered on Amazon.* I scratched it and even ordered another I liked it so much! I swear I wouldn’t steer you to bad gear.
A polarizer is another item that’s handy to have if you are shooting during the day in any of the parks. Those rocks look so much better in the early morning or evening hours. To help keep that vibrant color going all day the polarizer helps but so does the blue sky. If it’s a grey day the Utah rocks just don’t stand out as much.
My must-have photography travel gear list:
- Camera, of course!
- Backup battery charger for my phone with cord because I use a remote timer on my phone for shots with me in it
- Canon 6D with 24-105mm lens
- Secondary lens of choice, preferably wide angle and 50 mm
- Backup battery for my camera with charger
- ND filter, polarizer, lens hood
- Tripod (make sure you have the plate that attaches to your camera before you leave the house)
- Lens cloth or two
- Sensor cleaning brushes
- A memory card that has more than enough room on it (you never know when that perfect moment will arise and it would be a pain to have to delete photos for it)
- Saved Google maps for when I’m in areas of no service
- Parks pass(es) if I can buy ahead of time
- Head lamp or flashlight
- Water and snacks for any hike I go on
- Water cover for camera and lens (waterfalls can be too wet!)
- Red dress (follow the series on Instagram!)
- Gloves for climbing
*Affiliate link. If you order I make pennies in profit.