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Medium Format Ultralight Hiking Kit

This gosh darn thread "made" me send off to LensRentals for a test drive of the 907X & 45P. :) Luckily new ones seem out of stock at the moment.

My medium format kit is down to 1.9 kg thanks to the GFX50R + 50mm + small Gitzo tripod. In total I carry about 9.5 kg for four nights
9.5 kg is an amazing weight and I'm envious of that tripod. Looks like it's almost impossible to find now.

The one "nice" thing about shopping for ultralight, expensive gear, when one comes from the medium format camera world the stuff looks cheap. :)
 

anyone

Well-known member
This gosh darn thread "made" me send off to LensRentals for a test drive of the 907X & 45P. :) Luckily new ones seem out of stock at the moment.
I know what you mean. I didn't really plan for another medium format body ... :D

9.5 kg is an amazing weight and I'm envious of that tripod. Looks like it's almost impossible to find now.
It is quite impossible to find indeed, and while it's lightweight, it does have its downsides, particularly in the working height. For 528g including head you need to be ready for compromises... A bit taller would be nice, but for that I guess your tripod is the right one. Below 1kg including head is hard to beat for a full-sized tripod.

The predecessor, the Gitzo G0012 or Gilux is more common, costs almost nothing, but has even more limited working height. I wasn't entirely happy with it in the Alps, as I got too much of the vegetation on the pictures. On the pictures posted in the behind the scenes thread you can see the Gitzo G0012 in action. It was stable enough for the GFX + 50mm.

It may be a detail question, but how do you guys carry your filters? I do not have a ND filter kit, so I rely on screw-in filters.

My approaches so far are not really satisfactory:
(1) Standard Schneider Kreuznach plastic filter box: bulky & rather heavy
(2) Dakine filter bag: good protection, but for a UL kit definitely way too large
(3) Screw-in metal caps for the filter stack: small, but no outside protection, takes time due to unscrewing procedure.
 
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rdeloe

Well-known member
It may be a detail question, but how do you guys carry your filters? I do not have a ND filter kit, so I rely on screw-in filters.
I only use CPLs, and have only 4. I have one of those folding "wallets" that has padding on the outside, and 4 compartments (2 pers side). It's meant to fold and make a more compact wallet with the filters on the outside. Mine is made by B+W; it's quite sturdy.

I don't use it as designed though (i.e., folded up). My pack has a useless laptop compartment (useless to me anyway!) It makes a perfect place to hold the extended "wallet".

Carrying filters.jpg
 
It may be a detail question, but how do you guys carry your filters? I do not have a ND filter kit, so I rely on screw-in filters.
I've been quite happy with Kase Magnetic filters for my general landscape & long exposure kit and a simple lightweight set of Tiffen Bay 60 black & white contrast filters for the Hasselblad.

 -  - 01.jpg  -  - 02.jpg
 

anyone

Well-known member
Basically what I'm looking for would be one of those filter pouches - for two filters (ND + polarizer), and quite lightweight. And possibly another one for four (ND+ polarizer+ Yellow + Red).
 

f6cvalkyrie

Well-known member
Basically what I'm looking for would be one of those filter pouches - for two filters (ND + polarizer), and quite lightweight. And possibly another one for four (ND+ polarizer+ Yellow + Red).
I think you could make such pouches to measure of your filters and desires, from "bubble plastic" ... cheap, light, and when damaged, just make another one ...
 

anyone

Well-known member
Novoflex make a tripod of which two legs double as hiking poles if that’s any help. I don’t know what the weight is like.
I checked it out, it's 1.050g including two trekking poles: https://www.novoflex.de/en/products...ucts/triopod-kits/triopod-hiking-pod-kit.html
Since I do not usually carry trekking poles, it is too heavy for my purposes. It gets interesting if you use trekking poles, possibly even use them as a tent support, and then also for photography. I couldn't find any reviews about its stability. While Novoflex certainly produces quality products, I'm a little skeptical.
 

ThdeDude

Active member
including two trekking poles ... Since I do not usually carry trekking poles, it is too heavy for my purposes. It gets interesting if you use trekking poles, possibly even use them as a tent support, and then also for photography.
You could add monopod to that list.
My personal experience (or prejudice if you will) is that such multipurpose device are too compromised in one way or another. Especially if it is available only as a one-size-fits-all, might be short for some, too tall for others.
But as you suggested, for someone who brings along trekking poles and monopod anyway, this could be quite a useful kit.
 
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ThdeDude

Active member
My pack has a useless laptop compartment (useless to me anyway!) It makes a perfect place to hold the extended "wallet"
One approach is to buy a camera bag that's just one size too small, cut off all (unneeded) zippered pockets and accessory compartments, you be surprised how much bulk and weight can be saved.
 

rdeloe

Well-known member
One approach is to buy a camera bag that's just one size too small, cut off all (unneeded) zippered pockets and accessory compartments, you be surprised how much bulk and weight can be saved.
I thought about that when I saw that my Wandrd bag has not one but two useless laptop/tablet compartments. One could definitely be cut off to make space.
 

ThdeDude

Active member
my ... bag has not one but two useless laptop/tablet compartments. One could definitely be cut off to make space.
Why not cut off both right away? ;)
There are no moral rights for camera bag designer. :)

(This thread is titled "Medium Format Ultralight Hiking Kit")
 
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rdeloe

Well-known member
Why not cut off both right away? ;)
There are no moral rights for camera bag designer. :)

(This thread is titled "Medium Format Ultralight Hiking Kit")
One of them is useful for holding my filter pouch (see above pics). I just had a look at it tonight to see what I could do, and realized the other one has useful pockets on the front. I have to see if they're useful enough to warrant keeping it.

Rest assured I have no respect for what the manufacturer intended for an object! Have you seen my camera? ;)
 

Pieter 12

Member
Depending on how it is made and the material, you may have to finish the cut edges with hemming tape or even heat to melt the fibers so the bag doesn't start to unravel itself.
 

bab

Active member
Great suggestions but why not hire someone to carry the gear you need? Then you can FOCUS on seeing the image you want to create.
 

anyone

Well-known member
This is a reasonably accurate list of my backpacking gear for an upcoming 4 night trip to Stehekin. Doesn't include food or fuel. I need to add spare clothing to the list but I'm currently looking at 17 lbs and a bit less than 8 kg.

View attachment 194905

One of my inspirations for backpacking is photography so I kind of hate to sacrifice gear. I'll tough it out in other areas. :)
Your packing list made me rethink my cooking gear. Maybe I need to overcome my dislike for alcohol stoves - the tiny Toaks STV-01 weighs only 20g, but requires still a pot stand. The main reason is to be able to take precisely the amount of fuel with me that I need. With gas you carry always too much, even though I like it for cooking a lot better. But in the end, it's not a culinary trip... hot water can be achieved in many ways ;)
 
Your packing list made me rethink my cooking gear. Maybe I need to overcome my dislike for alcohol stoves - the tiny Toaks STV-01 weighs only 20g, but requires still a pot stand. The main reason is to be able to take precisely the amount of fuel with me that I need. With gas you carry always too much, even though I like it for cooking a lot better. But in the end, it's not a culinary trip... hot water can be achieved in many ways ;)
For full disclosure, I switched from gas canisters to alcohol stoves because I don't like the waste of the empties. FYI, I HIGHLY recommend the Trangia alcohol stove. It has a "snuffer" cap that lets you put out the flame and simmer. Plus it has a sealing cap so you can keep the remaining fuel for the next use. I also like their fuel bottles even though they aren't the lightest option.

On my next trip I'm going to try out the hybrid cold soaking idea. Which is just adding water to a dehydrated meal midday and then simmering it up to temp at dinner. Uses a bunch less fuel.
 
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