Photography is a pain in the neck..

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AstroEd

Well-known member
Supporting Member
Thread starter
Perchance to dream - that's a good dream.....I also thought about the Z9, but it's too heavy for me, so either I'll wait (and hope) for the APS-C Z9 equivalent, or get something like the OM-1, even though that would mean a significant cash outlay. Trouble, trouble........
I am kinda waiting to see what the Z8 brings if/when it is released.
 

Rustic land

Well-known member
When I am taking all my gear for the day, I just throw my backpacks, tripods, drinking water and anything else in one of the carts below. No sore shoulders and I have everything I need with me wherever I go. And before you say that you can't pull that over large logs etc. well your right but if I am going into areas that are extremely rough terrain I will only take one camera and lens and make do with that.
BCF_599462_hi-res.jpg
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Palmor

Well-known member
Supporting Member
I use the Peak Design slide strap https://www.peakdesign.com/collections/straps/products/slide, always in the cross body mode. The heaviest lens that I have used it with is a Tamron 150-600 mm G2 attached to a D500, and I've had no issues walking about for several hours. The Peak Design slide strap is more than just a neck strap - very comfortable.

Same as I use.

I've used it with all my camera/lens combo including my A1/600F4 combo. I regularly do multiple mile walks with that setup and don't have any issues, but I know this is one of those things that is very personal and what works for one person may not work for another.
 

Ralph

Well-known member
Supporting Member
I currently have 2 ways of doing my wildlife photograph. Main way is to haul out a tripod and shift it around to various parts of my local lake.
The second is to put the D500 camera strap on my neck and walk around the lake paths and hope I see something close enough to image.

When walking I have been leaving my tripod at home or in the car. (I tried a monopod but it is flimsy or I do not know the proper way to use it) and have the Nikon 70-300mm f/4.5 on the camera and the Nikkor 500mm f/5.6 in its container with the strap slung on my right shoulder, I swap them out 1-2 times a walk. There are times I wish I had a wider FOV lens or a Macro type lens for insects and flowers but I do not yet have or know what lens to get for that.

Within an hour my neck is getting stiff and I start back to the car. I am seeking a better way to carry these items without a big bulky backpack that I have to stop take everything off swap lenses repack the rest and hope the subject is still there waiting patiently for my shot.

Another concern is the fact that I am planning to get a MUCH heavier Z9 in the future so if the D500 gets uncomfortable the z( might become unbearable…

Do those long wider straps that let the camera hang off your neck and shoulder for “more comfort” and swing around for shots really work and really more comfortable? What options do you all for walking photography 2-3 lenses and still be quick to shoot, swap lenses etc.. or am I wanting the impossible? I am pretty much now deciding if I want birds in flight take one lens and if I want small stationary song birds take another but only one lens with no chance to swap as the conditions present themselves.
I use the D500 with the 500 PF on a Sun-sniper strap. I usually commit to one lens when out and about. Too much of a hassle to bring more than one. I stick an extra battery and card in my pocket and that’s it.
 

dabhand16

Well-known member
Supporting Member
Do those long wider straps that let the camera hang off your neck and shoulder for “more comfort” and swing around for shots really work and really more comfortable? What options do you all for walking photography 2-3 lenses and still be quick to shoot, swap lenses etc.. or am I wanting the impossible? I am pretty much now deciding if I want birds in flight take one lens and if I want small stationary song birds take another but only one lens with no chance to swap as the conditions present themselves.

I've been using ebay copies of the Black Rapid strap that goes across your shoulder for years now and I have an original BR strap too. A lot of folk don't like them as the camera is free to swing if you let it unless you secure it in some way. This does not bother me - and I think you do get used to it if you persevere - but if I'm in a tight space I just steady it with my hand. I hardly know that my D850 + Nikkor AF-S 80-200 f2.8 is there and I never get any aches or pains. I use Manfrotto RC2 QR plates and the D ring screw takes the strap carabiner but I have replaced some RC2 plates with a BR screw although the original D rings are OK for me. They are now about 12 years old or more and are as good today as they were when I first bought them.

In the UK they are only about 10 GBP so well worth trying. Search for Quick Rapid on ebay. There are lots of other straps available that go over the shoulder from all of the makers so there must be one out there you will like.
 
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PeggyBaker

Member
I also looked at the peak design straps with the detachable tags like This?
I'm partial to the Peak Design straps (especially after the black rapid screw came out once resulting in an unhappy camera experience). They have a slide which is easily adjustable for comfortable length and the strap itself is designed to hug the shoulder and not slip around. If I start getting tired, I can fiddle with the strap and move the weight onto my hip. I also carry a smaller binocular on my belt, and I discovered that I can rest the lens on the top of the case sometimes too. I can also move the strap from the foot of the camera to the rings on the top of the camera just by clicking it out of and on to the different location.
 

Ductape

Well-known member
I just picked up (after reading a little bit about it here on BCG) a MrJan lens carrier system. First impressions, it seems a bit overkill for my 500pf (I will stick to my single BlackRapid shoulder strap). On todays walk, I purposely carried a 300 2.8 VR with a 2x and 1.4x TC option mounted to a Z9 and FTZ. Way more comfortable than using the usual BR strap. It felt good, and although I am not used to using it yet, after two hours of slow hiking I see a lot of potential.

 

PAUL50

Well-known member
Supporting Member
I currently have 2 ways of doing my wildlife photograph. Main way is to haul out a tripod and shift it around to various parts of my local lake.
The second is to put the D500 camera strap on my neck and walk around the lake paths and hope I see something close enough to image.

When walking I have been leaving my tripod at home or in the car. (I tried a monopod but it is flimsy or I do not know the proper way to use it) and have the Nikon 70-300mm f/4.5 on the camera and the Nikkor 500mm f/5.6 in its container with the strap slung on my right shoulder, I swap them out 1-2 times a walk. There are times I wish I had a wider FOV lens or a Macro type lens for insects and flowers but I do not yet have or know what lens to get for that.

Within an hour my neck is getting stiff and I start back to the car. I am seeking a better way to carry these items without a big bulky backpack that I have to stop take everything off swap lenses repack the rest and hope the subject is still there waiting patiently for my shot.

Another concern is the fact that I am planning to get a MUCH heavier Z9 in the future so if the D500 gets uncomfortable the z( might become unbearable…

Do those long wider straps that let the camera hang off your neck and shoulder for “more comfort” and swing around for shots really work and really more comfortable? What options do you all for walking photography 2-3 lenses and still be quick to shoot, swap lenses etc.. or am I wanting the impossible? I am pretty much now deciding if I want birds in flight take one lens and if I want small stationary song birds take another but only one lens with no chance to swap as the conditions present themselves.
I too am 70ish (a young one in my humble opinion) but can't carry a camera strap around my neck due to issues with a couple cervical vertebrae - a pay back from younger days playing sports. So, I use a shoulder harness that can handle two cameras. When I'm walking around, I'll use my Z9 and a 500PF (perhaps with a 1.4 TC) or the 100-400 S and the other Z9 will have a 70-200.

I have two harnesses. One is made by Black Rapid and works well, but always gets twisted up on me and the other, which is brand new, and still in the trial stage, is a leather harness made by Coiro. The Coiro is thicker and has padded shoulders and so far is extremely comfortable. The main benefit is all the weight is on my shoulders with no stress on my neck at all. I'd recommend looking into either or both. The Black Rapid I modified to use Magpul QD release connectors but after dropping the camera when the QD connector didn't hold I went to the Coiro which connects to the camera or the lens foot with a swivel connector and it also has a backup strap that connects to body of the camera. I've come to learn that Eric Bowles is correct when he says you really only need one camera and lens combination when walking about shooting birds. 90 - 95 percent of all my shots end up being taken with just a single camera. Nevertheless, the sling arrangement with just one camera still works great. So, that's my two cents, for what it's worth.
 

Joel N

Active member
Over these years, I found most success when I brought the least equipment, preferably a camera and a lense only, dedicated to one purpose and through repetition, get to know the subject behavior and environment better to know what equipment to best bring for the best chance. Yes with just a lense and a camera I found myself short when opportunities present itself suddenly but there are equally many instances where I have lost the chance to the shot simply as the lense I need was still in the bag. I am still learning to let go to gain more.
 

Andrew Lamberson

Well-known member
Supporting Member
I use the Cotton Carrier on long walks. It puts all the weight onto your shoulders and there is a bottom strap to put around your long lens to keep it from swinging. I attach a walking stick to the clip point on the side so I can just drop the stick and take my pictures, and then retrieve the stick via the cord.

The below version is great with heavier cameras and the sling works well with a lighter setup. I don't normally carry the rain shell and instead of carrying two cameras I epoxied the clip onto a water bottle and use the 2nd mount for it, It also works on your pants belt.

1654523826093.png
 

Spelzar

Well-known member
For an all day walk in challenging terrain I carry a D7200 + 300pf + 1.4tc on straps attached to a ThinkTank Streetwalker v2 this keeps both hands free leaving space in the bag for sandwiches, water, etc. For shorter walks a D850 + 500pf on a Black Rapid shoulder strap. This camera and lens are too heavy for the Streetwalker and too cumbersome to have swinging around climbing scree or navigating a peat bog when a walking pole is desirable. Sometimes I slip a 50 1.8, which is very light and compact, into a pocket.
 

agdoherty

Active member
Supporting Member
not sure if someone else said it yet, but i'm a fan of spider holster products. the dslr hip belt carries 2 Z9s without issue with the 70-200/100-400 attached. they have a neat attachment system that connects to the lens foot for longer glass, and the camera just hangs on your hip easy to remove at a moment's notice. if you are focused on the hike you can also lock the holster so the camera can't disconnect/fall out. you can also get the holster hardware to attach to belt/backpack hipbelt of your choice if you don't want the dedicated belt system. moving all the weight to your hips instead of shoulders is a pretty big improvement, and you can still wear a backpack without all the awkward strap wrangling.
 

Chris K

Well-known member
I think most people here with handholdable telephotos do a variation of the same theme. This is my variation:
  • Z9 + 500PF or 100-400
  • An Arca-Swiss plate on the tripod foot, with Peak Design quick-release dongles
  • The wide Peak Design strap, worn across the body
  • The strap is cinched to rest at my hip when traveling so it doesn't sway, and a bit longer when shooting
  • Hand strap on the Z9 to use while shooting, to reduce hand fatigue
If I need to shoot other subjects I also use either:
  1. My phone
  2. My X100V in a pocket (preferred) or on a short strap on my neck (for short trips)
  3. My Peak Design sling bag strapped tight to my back, with my XT4+18-55 or Z6+24-200
I'm not a large person, but I can carry the Z9+500PF for 4+ hours with no pain. Incidentally, I used to carry a Canon DSLR kit that was about the same size/weight as the Z9+800PF, and four hours was roughly the time when that kit started making my shoulder sore.

Personally, I'd recommend using a cross-body strap for your kit, and making you can adjust it so it doesn't swing around when you walk. The movement of the lens is worse than the weight, in my experience.

Once you have the strap issue sorted, downsize your lens until you don't feel pain. If you have to move down to a 300PF and a 2x TC, that's just what you're going to have to do. Unless you're shooting for hire, I think trading comfort/health for image quality is worth it every time.

If you don't like the Peak Design strap, I know many people like Black Rapid, and I was very happy with my Op/Tech straps back in my DSLR days, too.
 

AstroEd

Well-known member
Supporting Member
Thread starter
I too am 70ish (a young one in my humble opinion) but can't carry a camera strap around my neck due to issues with a couple cervical vertebrae - a pay back from younger days playing sports. So, I use a shoulder harness that can handle two cameras. When I'm walking around, I'll use my Z9 and a 500PF (perhaps with a 1.4 TC) or the 100-400 S and the other Z9 will have a 70-200.

I have two harnesses. One is made by Black Rapid and works well, but always gets twisted up on me and the other, which is brand new, and still in the trial stage, is a leather harness made by Coiro. The Coiro is thicker and has padded shoulders and so far is extremely comfortable. The main benefit is all the weight is on my shoulders with no stress on my neck at all. I'd recommend looking into either or both. The Black Rapid I modified to use Magpul QD release connectors but after dropping the camera when the QD connector didn't hold I went to the Coiro which connects to the camera or the lens foot with a swivel connector and it also has a backup strap that connects to body of the camera. I've come to learn that Eric Bowles is correct when he says you really only need one camera and lens combination when walking about shooting birds. 90 - 95 percent of all my shots end up being taken with just a single camera. Nevertheless, the sling arrangement with just one camera still works great. So, that's my two cents, for what it's worth.
1 WOW! I wish I could afford TWO Z9’s lol, I maxed out a credit card getting my current gear and the credit line is still about$1,000 short of just paying for a Z9 body. 2. I like the idea of long wide straps with an additional cushioned shoulder pad area.
 

PAUL50

Well-known member
Supporting Member
1 WOW! I wish I could afford TWO Z9’s lol, I maxed out a credit card getting my current gear and the credit line is still about$1,000 short of just paying for a Z9 body. 2. I like the idea of long wide straps with an additional cushioned shoulder pad area.
LOL! I broke the bank doing it but I thought ”what am I waiting for.” I’m really happy with the Coiro harness because it takes a great deal of the pressure off my neck and much easier to work with than the Black Rapid.
 

AstroEd

Well-known member
Supporting Member
Thread starter
LOL! I broke the bank doing it but I thought ”what am I waiting for.” I’m really happy with the Coiro harness because it takes a great deal of the pressure off my neck and much easier to work with than the Black Rapid.
Well you answered one question for me I was worried the Z9 would be too big and was thinking settling for a Z6-ii/z7-ii or waiting for a z8, now I can find some way to go further in debt and get the z9 lol.
 

nokk

Active member
i use the peak design slide and also wear it cross body. i wish they made one without the rubbery grip on, but that's my only complaint about it. it's very comfortable to wear if i'm out all day with the sony a1 and 200-600mm.
 

NorthernFocus

Well-known member
Supporting Member
Do those long wider straps that let the camera hang off your neck and shoulder for “more comfort” and swing around for shots really work and really more comfortable?...
In a word yes. It's no panacea but much more comfortable than a neck strap. When walking I alternate letting the weight hang on the strap and carrying it by the lens foot or periodically cradling it in my arms like a rifle.
 

AstroEd

Well-known member
Supporting Member
Thread starter
I am seeing reports on a Facebook that the z9‘s lens mount section has issues with not being sturdy and snapping off? Anyone experiencing this or know anything about it?
 

nikonkelly

Member
I currently have 2 ways of doing my wildlife photograph. Main way is to haul out a tripod and shift it around to various parts of my local lake.
The second is to put the D500 camera strap on my neck and walk around the lake paths and hope I see something close enough to image.

When walking I have been leaving my tripod at home or in the car. (I tried a monopod but it is flimsy or I do not know the proper way to use it) and have the Nikon 70-300mm f/4.5 on the camera and the Nikkor 500mm f/5.6 in its container with the strap slung on my right shoulder, I swap them out 1-2 times a walk. There are times I wish I had a wider FOV lens or a Macro type lens for insects and flowers but I do not yet have or know what lens to get for that.

Within an hour my neck is getting stiff and I start back to the car. I am seeking a better way to carry these items without a big bulky backpack that I have to stop take everything off swap lenses repack the rest and hope the subject is still there waiting patiently for my shot.

Another concern is the fact that I am planning to get a MUCH heavier Z9 in the future so if the D500 gets uncomfortable the z( might become unbearable…

Do those long wider straps that let the camera hang off your neck and shoulder for “more comfort” and swing around for shots really work and really more comfortable? What options do you all for walking photography 2-3 lenses and still be quick to shoot, swap lenses etc.. or am I wanting the impossible? I am pretty much now deciding if I want birds in flight take one lens and if I want small stationary song birds take another but only one lens with no chance to swap as the conditions present themselves.
I too had neck issues. I tried the black Rapid knock offs and they were ok but didn’t totally resolve the problem. I then tried a cotton carrier and that made my hip ache within minutes. Finally a friend gave me a black rapid (the original design) and I was pain free even on all day shoots! I know that everyone is different, but this resolved my issues. I shoot 40-50,000 images each year, so I believe that it is a real working solution, at least for me.
 

Tom.D

New member
I currently have 2 ways of doing my wildlife photograph. Main way is to haul out a tripod and shift it around to various parts of my local lake.
The second is to put the D500 camera strap on my neck and walk around the lake paths and hope I see something close enough to image.

When walking I have been leaving my tripod at home or in the car. (I tried a monopod but it is flimsy or I do not know the proper way to use it) and have the Nikon 70-300mm f/4.5 on the camera and the Nikkor 500mm f/5.6 in its container with the strap slung on my right shoulder, I swap them out 1-2 times a walk. There are times I wish I had a wider FOV lens or a Macro type lens for insects and flowers but I do not yet have or know what lens to get for that.

Within an hour my neck is getting stiff and I start back to the car. I am seeking a better way to carry these items without a big bulky backpack that I have to stop take everything off swap lenses repack the rest and hope the subject is still there waiting patiently for my shot.

Another concern is the fact that I am planning to get a MUCH heavier Z9 in the future so if the D500 gets uncomfortable the z( might become unbearable…

Do those long wider straps that let the camera hang off your neck and shoulder for “more comfort” and swing around for shots really work and really more comfortable? What options do you all for walking photography 2-3 lenses and still be quick to shoot, swap lenses etc.. or am I wanting the impossible? I am pretty much now deciding if I want birds in flight take one lens and if I want small stationary song birds take another but only one lens with no chance with the 200-5 to swap as the conditions present themselves.
I have this camera strap, and I use it with my D850 and the 200-500mm lens attached, while wearing this strap with this unit atached, I feel no discomfort what-so-ever.
 

Dreamweaver

New member
not sure if someone else said it yet, but i'm a fan of spider holster products. the dslr hip belt carries 2 Z9s without issue with the 70-200/100-400 attached. they have a neat attachment system that connects to the lens foot for longer glass, and the camera just hangs on your hip easy to remove at a moment's notice. if you are focused on the hike you can also lock the holster so the camera can't disconnect/fall out. you can also get the holster hardware to attach to belt/backpack hipbelt of your choice if you don't want the dedicated belt system. moving all the weight to your hips instead of shoulders is a pretty big improvement, and you can still wear a backpack without all the awkward strap wrangling.
Thanks for mentioning the Spider Holster system. I also appreciate the comfort that the hip belt affords, but was disappointed to find the Spider Lens Plates to be incompatible with the RRS lens collars I have.
 
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