Given my change in travel focus (from fishing and automobile travel to fast-moving basic tourism), I shifted my photographic expectations. (Had a reason to buy more camera gear).
In the past, I paid little attention to weight or bulk in choosing lenses and equipment. When I travelled to Patagonia, I tipped the scales at 22 pounds. My favorite lens (70-200 f4.5) weighs over 3 pounds.
I turned to Nikonians.org discussion forum for assistance from fellog photographers. Points made:
-need to travel light
-tripods and flash are too conspicuous and other prohibited or require special fees
-all choices require compromises
Given my focus on landscape, buildings and people, I ultimately packed about 11 pounds of photo gear including my protective knapsack:
-Nikon D200, 8GB in flash cards, 2 LiIon batteries
-18-200mm f3.5-5.6 lens, for most everything
-12-24mm f4.0, for wide buildings and landscapes
-50mm f1.4, for low light conditions
-tabletop tripod (Bogen and Really Right Stuff)
-charges, electrical and battery
-filters- 4 including circular polarizer
-remote control wireless
-chamber and sensor cleaning brush, blower
The hard disk drives have worked well for me in the past. After a double back-up, I reformat my CF card for the next ust. On some days, I take 2GB of photos (RAW + JPEG, about 16MB for each photo). The Himalayas present a special situation in that hard drives are warranted to work up to 10,000 feet in altitude and are designed to spin on a cushion of air. Although positive results have been reported at higher altitudes, my backups may be unpredictable. The manufacturer, Wolverine, has asked me to report my experience at 15,000 feet.
One additional concern is electricity or the lack thereof. Both my camera and the HDDs need to be charged. I expect days without electricity. I assume I will have access to AA batteries and have a special camera grip and external HDD charger to accomodate this.
The 18-200mm and 12-24mm are each about 1 pound.
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