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Alaska Trip next week
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Aug 12, 2014 17:35:38   #
Tommg
 
We are also taking a trip to Alaska next week, 7 days land adventure & 7 days on a cruise, inside passage. I also have questions about what lens to take with me. Never been to Alaska & don't know what to expect.

I will be using a 7D Canon. Have 2 kit lens - 18 - 135 & 70 - 300. A 10 - 22, 17 - 55 and a Tamron 150 - 600.

Thinking about taking the 150 - 600, the 10 - 22, the 17 55 ... not sure if the 70 - 300 & the 18 - 135 will be necessary. I always seem to bring too many lens when traveling. Any thoughts?

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Aug 12, 2014 17:49:59   #
doduce
 
Tommg wrote:
I always seem to bring too many lens when traveling. Any thoughts?


Welcome to the Hog.

My thoughts only. I took two--a 12-24 and an 18-300. It was plenty. Just the 150-600 will be heavy enough. When you get off the ship at the various stops, are you going to be comfortable carrying a load of kit, changing lenses, watching for damage, etc? I think three may be overkill, but you know what you shoot and what you'll be doing.

Have a great trip.

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Aug 12, 2014 18:18:17   #
GrayPlayer
 
Been to Alaska twice and would suggest the 17 - 55 & 70 - 300.

For wildlife, unless you want the scars to prove, it stay alert.
Often times bears, moose will show when you least expect them. If you take the Denali tour some will be side the road, others mile away. 70-300 would be my choice on tours inland and 17-55 for shipboard, touristy shots.
Have a great trip.

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Aug 12, 2014 18:42:54   #
LaurenT
 
Tommg wrote:
We are also taking a trip to Alaska next week, 7 days land adventure & 7 days on a cruise, inside passage. I also have questions about what lens to take with me. Never been to Alaska & don't know what to expect.

I will be using a 7D Canon. Have 2 kit lens - 18 - 135 & 70 - 300. A 10 - 22, 17 - 55 and a Tamron 150 - 600.

Thinking about taking the 150 - 600, the 10 - 22, the 17 55 ... not sure if the 70 - 300 & the 18 - 135 will be necessary. I always seem to bring too many lens when traveling. Any thoughts?
We are also taking a trip to Alaska next week, 7 d... (show quote)


Originally, my thoughts were to bring the 18-135 and the 70-300, and leave the rest at home. However, I see you are going on a land tour also. If you are going into Denali National Park, you might need your Tamron for animal shots. There are times that they can be far away.

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Aug 12, 2014 18:51:29   #
Chris F.
 
Hi Tommg, I would take the Big "T" 150-600 for sure. You will see bald eagles, humpback whales and a lot of other wildlife. There are great whale watch tours out of Juneau, I highly recommend one. Bald Eagles are like pigeons in Ketchikan right of the pier. If you have a balcony off your room you may see Killer whales. In Denali, there are wild moose everywhere and other wild life sometimes can be seen a good distance away. Take the Big "T" as one of your lenses for sure!

Have fun, Alaska is such a fantastic place to see.

Chris

I have only
Tommg wrote:
We are also taking a trip to Alaska next week, 7 days land adventure & 7 days on a cruise, inside passage. I also have questions about what lens to take with me. Never been to Alaska & don't know what to expect.

I will be using a 7D Canon. Have 2 kit lens - 18 - 135 & 70 - 300. A 10 - 22, 17 - 55 and a Tamron 150 - 600.

Thinking about taking the 150 - 600, the 10 - 22, the 17 55 ... not sure if the 70 - 300 & the 18 - 135 will be necessary. I always seem to bring too many lens when traveling. Any thoughts?
We are also taking a trip to Alaska next week, 7 d... (show quote)

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Aug 12, 2014 19:18:02   #
bennetphoto
 
I have been to Alaska with my 80-400mm and wished I had something with more reach for the Wildlife. The eagles are awesome, and if you really want to catch some action shots, you will need that 150-600. I would not hesitate to bring that. In addition, the 17-55 will serve you well for the landscape shots. It is an awesome place to be a photographer!!! Have fun...

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Aug 13, 2014 07:19:20   #
Longhorn
 
I just took the land and sea cruise to Alaska. Weight and space are a consideration if flying to and from your departure location. I took my Tamron 150-600mm, a 16-35mm and a 70-300mm in a back pack. The 70-300mm became the lens I used most often.

I had planned to use the Tamron in Denali National Park but here is the reality. You ride on a school bus--no overhead bins--the bus is loaded. The Tamron is big and it is heavy and you need some space to manage it. You have to shoot out a bus window if you spot wildlife & top window if it is raining). A moose is seen on the left side of the bus. Everybody on the right side of the bus moves left to see and get pictures. There is no way you can move and hold steady the big Tamron. I had to put the lens back in my backpack and use the 70-300mm.

You can use the Tamron in most other places. On whale watching tours you can use it but on our boat the boat got close enough that the 70-300mm was perfect.. We took a raft through an eagle perserve. We were so close to the eagles that the 70-300mm was perfect. The cruise ships travel close to the glaciers and they are so large that the 70-300 was again perfect. I used the 16-35mm for shots on board ship.

If you are going to take other types of land tours, you may have use of your Tamron but on my trip the 70-300mm was more than adequate.

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Aug 13, 2014 08:11:27   #
MiroFoto
 
I have been to Denali tour. The bears are most of the time far away. At that time I have been changing 50 and 200 all the time...until I dropped the camera . This month I will go again and have Tamton 16-300 ...and my philosophy is "If the lens is not enough at 300 just forget it . And if you want so much that bear, take 600 with a special tour or bring a bridge camera 50x.
In a bus tour, you will not have too much time.

Good Luck Miro

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Aug 13, 2014 08:17:10   #
shakespeare
 
Looks like you have some great recommendations for what you need to pack to shoot some photos. As an aside, if you end up in Fairbanks as part of your land package, check out www.travellingalaska.com for things to do, restaurants, gift ideas. I set up this site as a community service project following my trips to visit my son. It is designed for travelers who only have a few days in this location. Safe and happy travels!

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Aug 13, 2014 09:33:53   #
MikeFromMT
 
I would take the 10-22, 18-135 and the Tamron. I went to Africa in January and had a Canon 100-400, Tamron 18-270, and one other that I forgot. Did not have an ultrawide. I also had a Fuji 8200 bridge camera for those really long shots. The big key to the whole trip, and to get the shots I wanted, was a second camera body (not just the bridge camera). I Had a Canon 7D and a 6D with me. The 100-400 was always on one camera and I swapped lenses on the other as needed. Made shooting a lot easier and quicker. I found that I used the 100-400 a lot. Have a great trip

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Aug 13, 2014 11:53:33   #
Gil
 
Been there twice. I think you would be sorry if you owned the 150-600 and didn't have it with you - Especially in Denali Comes in great for eagles and whale watching too.
Have a great trip!

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Aug 13, 2014 12:12:52   #
amehta
 
Tommg wrote:
We are also taking a trip to Alaska next week, 7 days land adventure & 7 days on a cruise, inside passage. I also have questions about what lens to take with me. Never been to Alaska & don't know what to expect.

I will be using a 7D Canon. Have 2 kit lens - 18 - 135 & 70 - 300. A 10 - 22, 17 - 55 and a Tamron 150 - 600.

Thinking about taking the 150 - 600, the 10 - 22, the 17 55 ... not sure if the 70 - 300 & the 18 - 135 will be necessary. I always seem to bring too many lens when traveling. Any thoughts?
We are also taking a trip to Alaska next week, 7 d... (show quote)

I think both the 150-600mm and 10-22mm make a lot of sense. And perhaps a monopod. :-)

The main question is what to do between 20mm and 150mm? The 17-55mm f/2.8 has the best image quality if the three, so I would probably take that too. Will the 55-150mm gap bother you? I was in Australia and New Zealand last year for 5+ weeks with only primes, mainly the 85mm, 300mm, and 24mm. Only once would a zoom for the 85-300mm range have been useful. That was not enough that I would take another lens if I did a trip like that again.

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Aug 13, 2014 14:28:49   #
sumo
 
20 Jun we completed a 7 day trip via land and 7 day celebrity cruise... north to south

i took only two lens the nikkor 24-85 mm and a sigma 50-500 .....I used the 50-500 most of the time....the one time in Ketchikan I went to town with only my 85 mm lens....very disappointed, saw hundreds of eagles...cursed the whole time because i left my 500 back on the ship

btw we departed Ketchikan to Vancouver (our end point) and most of that trip via inside passage was dark...

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Aug 13, 2014 16:21:10   #
Tom H
 
My first trip to Alaska was a 7 day land and 7 day cruise. Wonderful trip. Since then I've driven up in a small RV and stayed most of two summers. Will likely go back next summer and stay longer into the fall.

IMHO, Shakespeare gave you the best lens advice. I used a wide angle a lot! I also used a 50-300 a lot. I just don't think the Tamron will work much traveling the way you are going. If in a car, yes, the Tamron would be a must. But shoulder to shoulder on trains, buses, and rocking whale watching boats it just isn't going to work for you.

You will be lucky if you see a bear up close. A moose is more likely. When on a tour, you will not be in any danger from any animals. When hiking by myself, I did see a bear looking at me from about 70 yards away. On another hike I came face to face with a moose on a trail. When walking near fishing areas I did see bear up close -- very close several times. But on a tour you aren't as likely to see large wild animals. In Denali you have a pretty good chance, but don't expect too much up close. You are more likely to see wild animals in Yellowstone than in Alaska. However, Alaska is beautiful!!! I can't get enough of it.

Their are two MUST DO's. One is, of course, the Denali bus tour. The other is the Kenai Fjords tour out of Seward. I saw an amazing variety of sea life and birds. I talked to others that had seen very little on other days. I highly recommend this company but skip the dinner deal on Fox Island: http://www.kenaifjords.com/

If in Skagway take one of the White Pass-Yukon train rides.
http://wpyr.com/

In Fairbanks take the Discovery Riverboat cruise: http://riverboatdiscovery.com/

Sorry if I digressed too much from your question. Have a great time!!!

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Aug 13, 2014 19:30:15   #
jaybyrd
 
I recently returned from a similar trip to Alaska. I took my D7000 with a Nikon 18-140 and the Nikon 70-300. I was very pleased with the results. Both got a lot of use. I left the Tamron 18-270 at home and was not disappointed.

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