travel Tag

Nothing like a tortured pun to start the morning, eh? Well, read on - it gets worse. The Peak Design people have always had innovative ideas about slinging cameras. We saw them first in the era of the quick-draw holster camera rig - this was about five years ago - when the flavour of the month was finding some way to suspend a heavy camera from your belt or backpack strap instead of hanging it round your neck. Their offering was a two-part metal plate that sandwiched the belt and then accepted a dedicated plate attached to the camera. It actually worked, but like many such rigs, it was fiddly to set up and required a good degree of faith to hang expensive gear on while you clambered over rocks and bodies. And it didn't quite have the kewl factor of some of the other contenders. ( My favourite was the Mississippi Traffic Cop rig that one English firm put out. You got a Sam Browne Belt made with enough bulk to suspend a hawg laig pistol...

And who doesn't like large prospects? Well, if you've decided to be a bit more ambitious with your camera choice - and hoist medium-sized lenses - you'll want to advance  from yesterday - so today you get the Manfrotto Compact Advanced tripod. Bigger, longer legs - a heftier ball head - and the classic Manfrotto quick release mechanism for your camera. Still the same plastic leg clips and yoke, but bigger. One extra leg segment. A separate panning lock and action. And the Manfrotto quick mount plate - possibly the most common feature of many of their tripods. It has a positive locking mechanism to prevent inadvertent opening And enogh of a foot to cope with anything up to a medium DSLR. The tripod is still light enough to haul out on a hike or around a city centre. It is small enough to leave in the boot of your car in its bag all the time when you're motoring. If nothing else, you can enliven a long country trip by setting it up at a layby and pretending to be a Multinova. Just...

Some photographers search for ready-made solutions to their problems. Others reverse it - they seek out problems to match their solutions. My favourite group - a group to which I belong - finds a solution and turns it into a problem. Then we run like blazes. I was reminded of this when inspecting the Lowepro DroneGuard CS300. It is the perfect solution for the problem of getting a drone safely to the launch site. Sturdy, fitted, and man-portable, it can house the aircraft, spare batteries, controllers, and propellers and do so while being carried the back - leaving the hands free to assist in crawling through underbrush or chain-link fences. All the interior parts are removable and fasten upon the basic shell with Velcro™. Plenty of loops on the outer face of the lid to accommodate wire-cutters, sonic screwdrivers, or limpet mines. A day's play with the drone should be easy whether visiting the local park or climbing up Bluff Knoll in a sleet storm. For the rest of us - the ones who avoid public parks and Bluff Knoll - the chief advantage...

I am not sure if this column will sell you anything  - I'm not even sure if it will sell you on anything. But If I can make silly decisions, so can you, and sometimes they are the smartest part of the whole day. Take the business of breaking the habits of a lifetime and going against all that you have been taught? Well, if you can do this without travelling the wrong way up the Freeway at peak hour, you might just do your photography a service. I think I have done so by going strapless. Like all photographers of the 1960's I diligently threaded the leatherette straps supplied in the boxes onto the SLR and compact cameras of the period. I wore them around my neck  or over my shoulder until I had banged the lenses into enough walls to dent the filter rings. Then I kept them in camera bags and fumbled for them until I dropped them on the pavement. Then I just dropped them into Pelican cases...

Before this starts to sound like Goldilocks, I must hasten to add that I am writing about a Lowepro product  - a bag designed for mirror-less camera systems  and the averae tourist user. Whether you use it for bear-hunting or porridge-stealing is your own affair. The Lowepro m-Trekker SH 150 is a shoulder bag designed for a mirror-less body plus one or two of the smaller lenses and a few of the smaller accessoties that one would use on a day's travel.   Note the silencer tabs for the velcro and the little card pouch concealed under them. Also note the slim but strong padding in the compartment  - your camera and optics are safe in a crowd. If this all sounds like a little deal...

This one popped up on the radar in Murray Street - and it was completely unexpected - the online catalogue for the main Barbershop site did not list it at all. It was only when I looked at the images provided by or Australian wholesaler - C.R. Kennedy - that I was able to get details for this case. Well, this is magnificent. It is known and the " Heritage " and it surpasses even the " Quiff " as a period piece. Because make no mistake about it - this has gone well past the point of being a little handbag to haul to the shops - this is full-blown period travel luggage. The only other place you see things as wonderful as this are strapped to the rear of vintage cars. The term " Carry On "  on the Kennedy site suggests that it is suitable for in-cabin packing on domestic flights. These specify either 105 or 115 cm as a linear total of length, width and height. The " Heritage " comes to 106.5...