Ah, I was thinking that a gear post might be just what the doctor ordered. Overall, the trip was extremely gear unfriendly when you think about it. Extreme heat, exposure to water, exposure to find dust and sand, and the general physical abuse of the equipment.
So, let’s get to the list already!
- Canon 40D: The 5D Mark II didn’t make the trip. I had to test out my waterproof pack thoroughly before I trusted it.
- Canon 10-22mm: The lens that has to come with the 40D! Love this lens still
- Canon 28-135 IS USM: My old standard lens. Been with me for well over 5 years.
- Lowe Pro DryZone Rover: This little trip proved out the value of the DryZone. It did it’s job, even with tons of water spraying into the boat on the first day. The camera and accessories stayed dry. And the water reservoir was used often.
- Mountain Smith Modular Hauler: I bought this pack when I first hit the road with the Airstream. No complaints. It’s a big pack that I can stuff everything I need for a weekend into.
- North Face Rock 22: My new desert tent. Lots of mesh, which I thought would be good for breathability. But you know what? It lets the fine sand right into the tent, leaving you with dirt covered gear after a windy day. Not sure how I feel about that.
- MSR WhisperLite International:
- MSR Cook Pot: A very old MSR cook pot that’s been with me for more than a decade. Go figure, can’t find a link for it any longer. 🙁
- Slumber Jack 30 degree bag: Totally slept on top of the bag. Way too hot even at night!
- Thermarest matteress: I’ve been using Thermarest products for well over a decade. They always work well, and I’ve never had a complaint.
- Bogen Tripod: Barely used on the trip, but it did help me take a few cool night shots. No complaints there!
- Spot: The Spot Messenger worked extremely well. I mean EXTREMELY well. It’s supposed to handle water, right? So I hooked it to my life vest and sent out tracking signals while I went up the lake on the wave runner. The Spot kept sending messages even when soaked, covered in sand, and generally getting abused. To be honest, I abused it on purpose to see if it was all it’s cracked up to be. And it is. I’ll do a full story on it soon.
- IPod Touch: Well, I needed music and cartoons at night, didn’t I?
- Petzl Headlamp: Petzl’s headlamps just make me happy. I still have mine from the AT trip. And I own two more…..just in case!
- Lots of miscellaneous stuff: There’s a lot more, but I’ve given you the list of the “big items.”
So, there’s the “short” list. I could have told you about my kitchen set, water bottles, camera cleaning supplies, etc. But would you really want a list that long? I don’t think so. I think you’d get bored and navigate away. Nobody wants that.
I’ll be doing more detailed reviews soon. But, here’s two items that I just have to say a little more about. The Lowe Pro Dry Zone does what it says, and so does the Spot Messenger. If you’ve ever bought a product that didn’t live up to the hype, then you’re like me. Disappointment sets in, and you regret the purchase. Fortunately these two items are worth their price. Both performed as they were supposed to, and better yet, they did it with style. Soon I’ll write up independent reviews on each. I think they’re valuable tools for the outdoor photographer who looks to get off the beaten path!