My DSLR Kit for a Three-Month Road Trip

For those who have been following this blog you know that I’m getting ready to depart for a 3-month trip around the world creating a documentary with my daughter – Opening Our Eyes.  Here is what I’ve managed to fit into two backpacks – it just fits.  Thank goodness there’s two of us.
Please follow our journey

Canon 5D Mark II
Canon 7D
Canon 16-35mm 2.8
Canon 24-70mm 2.8
Canon 70-200mm 2.8
Canon 70-300mm 4.5
Canon 1.4X tele extender
Canon 2X tele extender
Nikon/Canon lens adaptor
Nikkor 14mm rectilinear lens f2.8
Nikkor 50mm 1.4
Nikkor 85mm f2
6 Batteries for Canon
1 Battery grip for 5D
3 Battery chargers
Remote control for Canon
AC adaptor for Canon
Rycote Hot shoe extension
4 – 16 GB flash cards – all cards – Sandisk UGMA
4 – 8 GB flash cards
2 – 8 GB SDHC cards
2  – 4 GB SDHD cards
Neutral density filter kit
Epson P6000 digital wallet
Zoom H4n digital audio recorder
JuicedLink DT454  audio preamp
Rode shotgun mic
Tram lav mic
Sennheiser Transmitter/Wireless kit
“Dead Cats” (windscreens)
XLR cords
HD Hero helmet camera with attachments
Flip HD
ManfrottoTripod and fluid head
Small Matthews boom stand for mic
Zacuto Z-Finder

Zacuto Striker Rig
Flex DSLR remote
Lacie Rugged Hard drives – 4000 GB memory!
Firewire and USB cords
3 – card readers
2 MacBookPro Laptops
1 extra laptop battery
1 extra AC adaptor for laptop
Blackberry Tour
2 Scotte Vests – with 22 pockets in each

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42 Replies to “My DSLR Kit for a Three-Month Road Trip”

  1. Missing from the list: the backpacks themselves. Which ones are you using?

    Also, this probably is obvious but still deserves to be said (even if for the benefit of those reading): I hope it’s all insured! I’d hate to lose all that gear in one fell swoop if a backpack gets lost or stolen.

    Have a great trip!

    1. Two Lowepro backpacks.
      Yes, everything is insured and registered with US Customs. I won’t be using a carnet though. But we have backups for just about everything we’re taking.

  2. How many cf card readers are you taking? Have you thought about an ewa marine underwater housing? Have a great trip feel free to email me. I would be happy to help any way I can.

    1. Jared, Got the remote control for the time lapse and I’m taking 3 card readers. No room for the underwater housing but I do have my HD Hero that comes in a housing.

  3. Nice list! Didn’t see the Zacuto Z-finder or other loop brand – seeing the Lcd screen in bright sun without one is a huge pain. There are workarounds like throwing your jacket around the camera to provide shade

  4. I think what you are doing is amazing and wish you and your daughter all the best! I noticed you chose to go with the LaCie Rugged Drives. Just a word of advice make sure you back them up on something other than a rugged. I have had 3 out of 3 fail and stopped using them all together. They stopped mounting and all the data was lost. I really hate to throw a product under the bus like that but on your journey keeping your data safe is second only to shooting it in the first place.

    1. I have to disagree with you. I’ve always enjoyed my travels more because I have used my tools (cameras) as my means to an end. Photographing the world has never been a barrier but rather an entree to many cultures. I would and have opted to leave behind most of my personal items, rather than my photo tools. Through my images I have the power to create awareness and for me that is the purpose of my travels – to open ones eyes to other people and cultures.

      Yes, I travel with a lot so that I am able to fulfill my purpose. I have had an incredible journey over the last 35 years – living the life I have wanted and pursuing my passions. I don’t look at my profession as work but as who I am and what brings me joy and fulfillment. But if I ever felt like my photography was a barrier to discovery – I would stop in a heart beat and if that is how you feel I would agree with you that you shouldn’t be making images. Follow your dream and never let others’ negative words take you away from your own purpose.

  5. A few tips that may save a couple of ounces and a little space:

    The 5D user manual is available as an app for iPhone/iPod Touch called Handi 5Dmk2.

    You may want to check out this multiple charger as an alternative to bringing several Canon chargers.

    A biking multitool can be a good compact lightweight option to replace a couple of screwdrivers, etc. They also usually have all the hex tools you need for tripods, rigs, etc.

    1. Scott – I looked everywhere for the Delkin dual charger – it’s been out of stock for months but two chargers don’t add much more than another 2 oz. so doesn’t really add too much to the load.

    1. I only had a small LED camera light with me. We relied on window light with reflector fill for the most part because we were limited with space. However, if I’m doing a corporate job, I come prepared with plenty of lighting.

  6. Just stumbled upon your most excellent blog. Thank you so much for taking the time to share. It means a lot. Love your latest post btw, a great 1-10!

    As I look through your list here I was wondering how the Zacuto Striker rig worked out for you? With a 150 hours of footage, did you find it really helped, or did you leave it in the bag?

    Most appreciated, and I look forward to watching the Doc!


    1. Hi Hans,

      I used the Zacuto “striker” all the time. But when I used it – I never used it with a lens that had a focal length greater than 50mm. Generally, I used a med-wide lens and in situations where I was following someone (like dancers).


      1. Thanks for the quick reply, Gail. Yeah, I’ve been wondering if it would become unwieldy with my 16-35 and especially 70-200. Thanks again!

        Oh, will your Doc be available on DVD? Perhaps I’ve overlooked that info as I cruise around.

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