What’s In My Bag ~ The Hiking Photographer
A little help on what to bring when you go hiking for that perfect picture.
Comfy backpack: I don’t have a suggested brand of backpack, sorry. I have tried all sorts of carriers; big MEC packs, small dirt bike bladder packs, single strap, and a Husband. I find them all uncomfortable, except the Husband LOL, but I have to carry my stuff somehow, so, I mostly use a single strap. Just try out different ones till you find one that works for you, and don’t get all fancy, a normal school backpack with thick cushion straps will work fine. If you are crafty, simply sew on extra cushioning where needed. I sometimes just fold a mitt under the shoulder strap if I’m out for a long time and getting sore. I am really that cheap, mostly because I would rather spend the money on camera gear and stellar hiking boots.
SMARTPHONE! I always take camera shots and post ‘em to Instagram. Also, always text a family member where you are hiking, and text when your done. This is my safety net because I mostly hike alone.
Camera! I have a canon rebel and love it. Honestly, just get an entry camera, and go up from there if you need more power/capabilities. 9/10 times its how you use the camera, not the fancy shit you have, so don’t fall victim to that. Get a couple photography tips here.
Lens: Bring all your lenses. It is so fun to take a break and switch out lens and, therefore, get different views of the same surrounding. I may have been using a wide-angle for most of the hike, but now I switch to a zoom and I can get neat shots of the small plants on the ground, like mushrooms or moss. Or pan the treetops and get some birds or sky shots. (note: you can use your zoom as a macro lens).
Film Camera: Just for the sheer pleasure of using it.
Tripod: I have an ancient tripod that was my father’s, and that thing is heeeeeavy, but it was free, so. But my advice would be to get a fancy new lightweight one. Side-story, I have heard many photographers tell stories where they fended off animals and people with their tripods, so this item is kinda a multitasker! Win-win!
First Aid Kit: Get one, get to know it, and pack extra bandages of all sizes, especially for your heels.
Bear Spray: Don’t just buy it, learn how to use it, watch 2-3 videos, and learn about different species and how to hike safely in their territory. Wildsafe BC is an amazing resource for wildlife in BC.
Knife: I always have a knife, just in case. Where it on the outside, clipped to your pocket for easy access. Why? Have you ever read articles on wildlife attacks? If I’m out there, I want a fighting chance. As a small female, I will arm myself to the teeth.
Plastic bags: I have a ziplock bag for my camera if it’s drizzling a bit. If it starts pouring I stick a garbage bag over my backpack.
Fanny-Pack: This was one of my favorite new buys. For some reason, women’s clothes either don’t have pockets at all, or have tiny friggin useless ones, so the fanny pack holds my cell phone, car keys, dog poop bags and lens cloths.
Water: Stop getting the plastic bottles and find a good re-usable one.
Bug Spray: Use whatever works for you, natural, deet filled, cream, whatever, all I can say is nothing ruins a hike like a swarm of mosquitoes, or, even flies trying to climb in your nose.
Sunscreen: Or else you will get hikers tan where the straps leave nice white skin and your shoulders are tomato red. OH, and your nose/forehead will burn.
Chapstick: Hot or cold out, your lips need protecting too.
Depending on the length I may add:
A Snack: But for crying in the sink CARRY YOUR GARBAGE OUT WITH YOU.
Extra socks: Always handy.
Extra Mitts: So, in the winter I wear finger gloves, but always pack a thicker pair to put over those.
Thanks for stopping by!! If you have any other tips or gear let me know!