Photography is a pain in the neck..

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Neil H.

Active member
Hi! I have quite a heavy set-up and have posted this image in several threads. This is how I carry my bird photography rig through the bush. Magpul strap with QD fittings that can attach to single point on either side of the L-bracket. You can pick it up and shoot as you see it, but I will attach to a single point depending if I want landscape or portrait orientation. e.g BIF - landscape, egret up close - portrait. However I think being prepared for macro and birds on one walk is a bit much. If you see something nice when out birding, go back later with the macro gear. Also consider spending a few hours in one spot and let the birds come. Great for water-fowl and particularly waders on a beach. Get low and let the in-coming tide bring them to you.
When moving to different sites in the car, the rig in the image can be released in two "pops" and then go on either my tripod or monopod that are always on the back seat. Furthermore all my lenses (14mm astro, 90mm macro and 2 zoom lenses) can be quickly attached and used in either landscape or portrait on my Flexshooter Pro Mini ballhead. So a pre-dawn birding trip with the camera set for hand-held BIF on the Magpul strap can turn into a tripod sunrise shoot in less than a minute.


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Gayle

New member
I use the cotton carrier. Once I got it adjusted properly it took the weight off my neck and onto my back. I use it with the Sony 200-600 lens and wouldn't trade it for anything!
 

PAUL50

Well-known member
Supporting Member
Hi! I have quite a heavy set-up and have posted this image in several threads. This is how I carry my bird photography rig through the bush. Magpul strap with QD fittings that can attach to single point on either side of the L-bracket. You can pick it up and shoot as you see it, but I will attach to a single point depending if I want landscape or portrait orientation. e.g BIF - landscape, egret up close - portrait. However I think being prepared for macro and birds on one walk is a bit much. If you see something nice when out birding, go back later with the macro gear. Also consider spending a few hours in one spot and let the birds come. Great for water-fowl and particularly waders on a beach. Get low and let the in-coming tide bring them to you.
When moving to different sites in the car, the rig in the image can be released in two "pops" and then go on either my tripod or monopod that are always on the back seat. Furthermore all my lenses (14mm astro, 90mm macro and 2 zoom lenses) can be quickly attached and used in either landscape or portrait on my Flexshooter Pro Mini ballhead. So a pre-dawn birding trip with the camera set for hand-held BIF on the Magpul strap can turn into a tripod sunrise shoot in less than a minute.


View attachment 40852
Nice set up. I used Magpul QD fittings with a harness that I had converted to that purpose and which connected at the foot of my 100-400 S, which was connected to my new Z9. While very busy shooting a woman with two horses and alternating rigs the QD fitting failed (or I did) and the camera and lens crashed to the ground on a gravel path. And yes, in the excitement of switching cameras I failed to hear, or not hear, the click the QD fitting should have made as I attached it to the harness. Had I adopted your setup, I may have been saved. Nevertheless, I switched back to a more conventional harness with swivel connectors and safety straps for piece of mind. Always had trouble either connecting or disconnecting the QD fittings to the lens foot or camera. However seeing your simple set up, I may experiment for walk about. Thanks. PS, both camera and lens survived nicely but for a couple small character scratches, praise be to Nikon.
 

Martin_Farrell

Martin Farrell
Supporting Member
Get something like a Black Rapid strap. It screws in to the tripod foot on your lens and goes over your shoulder. That's what I use, otherwise I just carry my camera/lens using the tripod foot as a handle. Carrying a camera with a long lens around your neck is bad for your neck and for your equipment.
Yes, I also have one and use it all the time.
 

agdoherty

Active member
Supporting Member
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.
Yeah that is a bummer. I do swap lens feet for the convenience of the hip carry, and luckily the spider lens plate on the nikon lens foot does fit into a RRS tripod/monopod head.

For shoulder straps I like the luma labs strap with QD connector to attach to a RRS lens foot.
 

ccirelli

Active member
Backpack with a good waist strap (which will transfer most of the weight off your shoulders / neck and onto your hips / waist) would be a good solution. You did mention no backpacks - but what about a compromise here: something like the Lowepro Protactic 350AWII (smaller / lighter backpack than the big 450 that most people get), and... a Peak Design Capture Clip, so you don't need to remove your backpack to use your camera? Probably not good to clip the 500, but the light 70-300 would work well on the Capture Clip.

There's also that "Cotton Carrier" system - basically a big harness with camera clips similar to Peak Design's Capture Clip. And it's not a backpack.

Personally I use a backpack (Nomatic's new Peter McKinnon 25L everyday model - best backpack I've ever owned), an 8L shoulder / sling bag (also McKinnon's new model - amazing!), and I bounce between 3 different straps - BlackRapid's RS-4 Classic Retro (it has a front length adjuster which I love), Peak Design's Leash strap (lightest of the Slide straps), and my good old simple Domke gripper strap.

Hope some of this info is helpful :)
 

Calson

Well-known member
For a heavy lens and camera combination like the 600mm f/4 and D5 or D850 I have long used the Kirk SS-1 Security 'Strap that B&H sells for $80. It has a padded strap and a clamp that attaches to any Arca-Swiss foot or base plate. Takes seconds to attach and I have it so it is at waist level and zero issues walking through the brush. I prefer to use the Kirk Security Strap and not have the lens and camera attached to the gimbal head and having it all slung over one shoulder.


No need to modity the camera or base plate or lens foot to use the Kirk strap and there is now way for it to accidently some loose as has happened with other straps with "quick release" mechanisms (QD or SS2 type) that can and have released when not wanted and damaged gear.
 

Rodamu

Active member
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.

Replace your 70-300 with the 28-300mm Nikon. the 28-300 is excellent for invertebrates and flowers and will still give you the reach of a moderate telephoto plus a good landscapers lens.

I use the SpiderPro Camera System - a belt and holster to save my neck. I use a wrist strap on the camera for safety and if I briefly need both hands. The SpiderPro doesn't work so well with long telephoto lens.
 
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