Does anyone lug a full frame camera up mountains?

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removed user 08 Jan 2018
I'm considering getting a 5D mark iv (plus prob a 24-70mm lens) for big days, alpine and multipitch but is it just too much weight? No point getting a camera I can't be arsed to carry and we all know how weight in the bag adds up. It'd be interesting to hear peoples thoughts.
 Jon Read 08 Jan 2018
In reply to removed user:

Canon 6d.
Up mountains, yes.
Up to a crag, for single pitch, sometimes.
Up multi-pitch climbs, no.
 coolhand 08 Jan 2018
I carry a Nikon D750 with a prime or two and a 24-120, I downsized from a D3. If I'm multi-pitching I'll swap it for a mirrorless with a pancake lens, but that's not very often and I find the AF to be disappointing. Always worth the weight for the SLR for me, I've tried lots of lighter cameras but they don't have the performance balance i need.
In reply to removed user:

I used to but have stopped and gone for a compact for now. Tend to swap between, depending whether I'm going for quality or speed.
 jethro kiernan 08 Jan 2018
In reply to removed user:

Yes, Nikon D810 plus lenses, I also use a Olympus mirrorless for when I want something lighter. You generally you'll be wanting to go out with photography as an explicit aim if your heading out with full frame, you'll probably spend a small fortune experimenting with various bags carry systems and straps
In reply to removed user:
5D mk3 plus 24-70Mk2 f2.8, and occasionally a 17-40 f4 and/or a 135 f2.

I used to lug all this around, but I switched to Fuji X for the outdoors. The main reason I bought the Fuji kit was for an expedition which never happened, but I've enjoyed using it so much that I've kept it as my outdoor kit. It is more than I wanted to spend on second system but I'm very happy with it. They key thing for me was that I often couldn't be bothered getting the Canon out, or I would leave certain lenses behind, so I began to question whether having all this weight and bulk was actually worth it.

I'll still take the Canon kit for specific shots but not on a normal day on the hills and never again backpacking/bike touring. I did take it on a ski touring backpack in Finland last March and it wasn't too much of a drag (and it performed brilliantly as expected) but I'm enjoying the Fuji so much more for just being out an about. The reduction in weight also means I will sometimes take a tripod, something I wouldn't do with the Canon which, aside from already being heavy in itself, needs a much more substantial tripod.

I'm pretty sure Jon Griffith has done a good article about photo gear with regards to weight, bulk, quality an usability. Have a search.
Post edited at 15:18
 Andy Nisbet 08 Jan 2018
In reply to removed user:

I don't, but I haven't the skill to justify the weight. Also my pictures are only going to be printed guidebook size. But I do wonder......
In reply to removed user:

It really comes down to if photography is as important as your climbing. I've lugged my 7D up lots of routes and never really regretted it, the pictures are always worth it for me. The only downside is you'll never get the unusual shots you can only get from a camera that you can rapidly pull out of your pocket in tricky places/conditions.
 SouthernSteve 08 Jan 2018
In reply to removed user:
I would say it is too much weight most of the time - never climbing or Alpine, but on a nice day I do take a D800 and 24-70 walking (often with a little 42mm pancake on the front in the bag). Its a heavy lump though and pop-up flashes can be a pain in rucksacks without a suitable case.
Post edited at 17:09
 Stone Idle 08 Jan 2018
In reply to removed user:

Canon 5d or 7d depending on the lens combo and what I want plus an R100 for multi pitch. The weight is secondary to results.
 Russell Lovett 08 Jan 2018
In reply to removed user:

Canon 5d and 70d. Canon 70/200 l lens. Canon 16/35 l lens. Canon 35/80 lens.spare batterys some filters. Travel tripod all in a photography rucksack. Then in another sac on my front rope for abbing, shunt, friends, nuts, Slings, food and drink. And if you think thats a lot my mate Mark Savage even takes a full lighting rig with him.
 pjm 08 Jan 2018
In reply to removed user:

Yes but you don't need to! (obviously)

If you're more likely to get the compact out frequently then that's a better bet, because it's more about making sure you have access to your camera when the shot is in front of you than taking the very best kit which stays in your pack!

Although I've also taken a very heavy Mamiya medium format beast and assorted lenses up once which allowed me to take an entire roll of... erm... 10 pictures, for the cost of about 7-8kg!
 RedTar 08 Jan 2018
In reply to removed user:

D800 and assortment of largish lenses comes with me most places. I'm considering a lighter camera to replace the system though.

My best purchase so far was a Peak Designs Capture plate - this lets me keep the camera at-hand all day rather than in my pack - as a result I take far more photos as I don't have to stop and take everything off each time I take a photo.
 Solaris 09 Jan 2018
In reply to removed user:
Some Fuji fan will be along in a short while, backing up Stuart en Ecosse, extolling the virtues of an X-T2 or X-T20, the former of which is water-resistant with lenses to match...
Post edited at 00:09
 Brass Nipples 09 Jan 2018
In reply to removed user:

Yes if not doing anything super technical.
 Adam Long 09 Jan 2018
In reply to removed user:

In the film days it was always full-frame, but digital full-frame was always too bulky for me until the Sony A7 came along. Choosing your lenses carefully (primes not zooms for me) is crucial to keeping the kit size and weight down.
removed user 09 Jan 2018
In reply to pjm:

Me too, I used to hike around with a RZ Pro II and three lenses! And this was before I had a car!
removed user 09 Jan 2018
In reply to Adam Long:

I went travelling for six months with a 1982 Nikon FM2 and honestly it was a huge pain the arse. And when I got back very expensive to get all the film developed. I wouldn't do that again.
removed user 09 Jan 2018
In reply to Solaris:

Yeah I've heard good things abou the X-T2. APS-C though.
removed user 09 Jan 2018
In reply to Russell Lovett:

Blimey that is a lot!
 pjm 09 Jan 2018
In reply to removed user:

That's the old camera I've got... the image through that viewfinder is just amazing! Barely use it now, but it's fun to get out the old full manual camera and slow everything down... best way to enjoy photography rather than "point and spray".

Also second the point about the Peak Designs plate - not sure it'd be up to hanging an RZ Pro II off, but it's fine for my Nikon DSLR. Works really well.
In reply to removed user:

No time to read other threads....the 24-70mm is a superb but very heavy lens with the 5D that's going to a serious amount of weight to factor into your day, try is once see how you get on? or choose your routes with care/consideration. For me the equation didn't work, it detracted from the climbing too much but many do see Ben Tibbets work.
Fuji X systems worth a look

 jethro kiernan 09 Jan 2018
In reply to removed user:

I would consider the Fuji XT system, I thought about it myself before I moved from Nikon DX to FX.
I am really impressed by the Nikon D810 but for more opurtune photography I would consider something more portable and as for climbing regularly it would be a beast to take the full frame
 ring ouzel 09 Jan 2018
In reply to removed user:

Hello (waves at solaris). I went from Canon to a Fuji X-T2 to keep the weight down. Of course then I stand on the scales in the morning and realise that I could do much more if I laid off the pies and the whole lighter camera thing was rather an expensive way to lose a few grams. But I do love the X-T2, it is superb!!
 greg_may_ 09 Jan 2018
In reply to removed user:

Sony a7 here - and a few primes.
In reply to removed user:

I look back in some amazement at the many days/ years I lugged my Hasselblad around the mountains, with three lenses and teleconverter, extension tubes etc, plus a Manfrotto tripod. Even doing some climbs with that heavy sack on my back. Biggest grip was soloing North Buttress on the Buachaille, when the tripod gave me problems as I was getting round the chockstone at the top of the crux chimney. ... Felt a lot harder than 'Moderate' with that weight tugging at my back

[The Hasselblad 500 C/M was of course a 120 roll film camera, producing 6 x 6 cm transparencies]
Post edited at 13:27
 Adam Long 09 Jan 2018
In reply to Gordon Stainforth:

Yeah, the tech now is amazing. A Sony A7R will give you resolution close to 4x5 and isn't much bigger than an OM-1.

Still something nice about a big piece of film though!
In reply to Adam Long:

I wouldn't romanticise film too much. One of its big problems was that, because of the huge cost per frame, it inhibited one's picture taking.
 Adam Long 09 Jan 2018
In reply to Gordon Stainforth:
No rose tinted specs here, Gordon - I've got 500 sheets of 4x5 in the freezer and try to shoot a sheet a week. And costs of film and dev have never been higher- about £7 a frame.

The problem with digital, I found, was that it is too easy. You can snap away without consequence, and push and pull it how ever much you liked afterwards. Great for commercial work, but utterly unfullfilling for personal stuff. So I've stuck with film for the work that I make time for and matters to me, and find the discipline required engages me far more than digital does. I quite enjoy the craft side of running a drum scanner too. I don't drag the linhof up multi-pitches in the mountains mind.

Digital feels to me a bit like climbing might do when gecko-skin gloves and shoes get invented. If you remove too much of the challenge I suspect the achievements will be less satisfying.
Post edited at 16:58
In reply to Adam Long:

... I rather like the sound of the gecko-skin gloves and shoes ...
 Solaris 09 Jan 2018
In reply to removed user:
> APS-C though.

Sorry - I should've explained that some people have gone from FF to APS-C and been pleased with the results, hence my suggestion. I take my X-E1 on routes far, far more than my FM2!
Post edited at 21:36
 jethro kiernan 10 Jan 2018
In reply to Solaris:
And the FM2 was a compact 35mm slr
I still have mine in a draw, I should get it out and use it one day or encourage the kids to try a roll of 35mm
In reply to jethro kiernan:

I still have my FM2, also gathering dust in a box somewhere. A physically small camera but quite heavy especially with a fast lens on it. The Fuji XT cameras remind me of it, which is a good thing.
 Solaris 10 Jan 2018
In reply to Stuart en Écosse:

Same here. Could I bring myself to sell it? Dunno. But as for the GR1v...!
 LouiseMcMahon 10 Jan 2018
In reply to removed user:
I carry a d7200 (apsc) and 3 lenses plus tripod and other gear on big days for shooting landscapes.

I’ve dragged it along cribgoch and all around the gliders and Carnedu. My main issue is not space but finding a bag that I can carry it all plus winter kit and still access the camera easily.
Post edited at 14:15
removed user 16 Jan 2018
In reply to Stuart en Écosse:

Thanks. Found the article I think

Good read. He's a fan of the Sony A7R ii, and the smaller size is enticing. I had hoped to boycott Sony for the rest of my life for this f*ckery:



 Lil_Pete 16 Jan 2018
In reply to Lil_Pete:

Blimey.  I couldn't be arsed to haul my 5Dmk1 round the lakes at Stourhead on Sunday...


 glenthemole 16 Jan 2018
In reply to Jon Read:

A bit controversially I just take my Fuji X100F (APS sensor, fixed 23mm lens equiv to 35mm on Full Frame).

I'm going out with photography as a secondary objective and want something I can take photos with minimal faff and not make the others I'm with wait. 


- Shove it in a jacket pocket without a lens cap on (has a lens filter and a small hood)

- Take it out and shoot with one gloved hand, and use the exp compensation/aperture dial if needed (with the same hand, and no lens cap removal needed)

- I can't zoom so only have to think about what direction to point the camera in


This works for my style - probably won't work for a lot of others, and if I can get one photo I really like from every couple of days out I'm happy. I guess the approach I've settled in to is I want a camera that if the stars align and there is great scenery and great light I can do it justice, but don't want to lug lots of weight up a hill if I never come out of the cloud.

Most of the stuff on my site was shot on the older X100 I used to have (haven't uploaded any pics since having the X100F)

removed user 22 Jan 2018
In reply to glenthemole:

Thanks everyone for answers. I'm starting to think the 5d is too large and heavy, and I'm coming round to the idea of the Sony A7Riii with 24-70mm (Zeiss). I had a hold of a A7Rii yesterday (which is same size and similar weight) and its impressively light and small. Drawbacks appear to be battery in cold conditions and lack of optical viewfinder. Oh and cost, of course. But its exciting that full frame cameras can be so portable. You could even hang it off a harness I think.

Post edited at 12:31
TheAtrociousSnowman 22 Jan 2018
In reply to removed user:

Don't forget you will require an adapter for this camera lens combo.

removed user 23 Jan 2018
In reply to johnhenderson:

Really? They're both E mount I think. 

TheAtrociousSnowman 23 Jan 2018
In reply to removed user:

I think he means a wider aperture A-mount Sony/Zeiss 24-70, so that's the confusion.

In reply to removed user:

Yes my mistake . I always associate a 24-70mm lens with an aperture of 2.8

 robphoto 05 Feb 2018
In reply to removed user:

A full frame will definitely give you better image quality, if it is too heavy you could try one of the sony full frames or a micro 4/3 camera. For most peoples uses these small cameras will be fine, plus you can shoot HD video on them. 

Hope that helps


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