Some people like to use a packing list for travel so they don’t forget anything. Below I’ve made a packing list for photographing Juneau, Alaska. Why? Juneau is a rainforest and there are certain items you might not think of that can make your life more comfortable if you end up photographing in the rain.

  • Rain Boots. Also known as the Alaskan dress shoe. If you want to look like a local, pick up some ExtraTuffs. A good waterproof hiking boot is also a good option.
  • Rain Coat. Quality is better here. A cheap one will leave you wet and miserable. Many options out there, GoreTex breathes well and usually keeps you dry. Rubber rain gear is the most waterproof, but doesn’t breathe so you get nice and sweaty. However, if you get cold easy, you might like the sauna feel 🙂
  • Camera Rain Cover. I use the cheap plastic ones (LINK) as they keep things dry and weigh nothing so there is always one in my camera bag. If you prefer a fabric one, this is a less expensive option. LINK
  • Backpack Rain Cover. You might be noticing a trend here. Rain covers keep things dry and happy. Check the size of your backpack and get an appropriately sized rain cover for it. LINK
  • Gaiters. If you’re using hiking boots, a set of gaiters can make a huge difference if you’re joining us for a hike. Keep things from falling in your boots.
  • Panoramic Nodal Rails. I love taking panoramic images and having the right gear makes a big difference. If you’re only taking pictures of things far away, nodal slides don’t matter that much. If you have anything close, you really need to start using them. There are expensive options for multi-row panos (which are of great quality like RRS and Nodal Ninja) or you can piece together parts on your own (which is what I’ve done). You are welcome to try out my setup and decide if it’s something you want to purchase in the future. You should at least have a basic nodal rail for single row panos (I use this one).
  • Camera. You should probably bring a camera to take pictures with
  • Tripod. This is a personal decision, some people hate tripods with a passion and that is totally fine. I can’t take a picture hand held to save my life. I use a tripod for everything and find them super helpful. In case you don’t have one yet, I highly recommend an arca-swiss compatible type. They are pretty much universal between brands so you don’t have to worry about forgetting a tripod specific foot. I can’t count the number of times I did that before I made the switch.
  • L-Bracket. This is something that completely changed my shooting. An L-Bracket allows you to turn your camera on it’s side to shoot vertical images. They are camera specific so you need to search for your camera when looking for one. They can be quite expensive (where the machining is perfect) or a bit cheaper (where fit is sometimes questionable). If you have an arca-swiss ball head on your tripod, they are designed to fit horizontally or vertically in them. They do add a bit of weight, but I always have them on all of my cameras.
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