Day 1- Packing Fast and Light (Look inside of my camera bag)

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This is a series of blog posts where I recap my latest photography trip to American Southwest.

Packing Fast and Light

My latest trip to the Southwest was a bit unusual. Normally, it takes me two weeks to plan such a long and complex voyage but, this year, I had only 8 hours.

My original intention was to leave for Nevada at the very end of May but, due to some changes in my personal life, I had to leave as soon as possible or postpone the trip until September.

Friday afternoon I booked a direct flight to Las Vegas for the following morning and spent the entire night booking hotels and planning my route.

My favorite part of the preparation for long trips is testing and packing my photo gear. First, I place every piece of the equipment on the floor, making sure I have everything in place. Then, I start packing.

Below is the photo of my photo gear that was ready to be packed.

Camera: Sony a6000
Lens: Sony 10-18mm
Lens: Sony 16-70mm
Tripod: FEISOL Tournament CT-3442
Ballhead: FEISOL CB-40D
L Plate Bracket: Docooler® Universal MPU100 Quick Release
HD Filter: Hitech 10 Stops
Camera Bag: Manfrotto Unica I Messenger Bag
Remote Trigger: FotoTech IR Wireless Shutter Release
Memory Cards (3):  SanDisk Ultra 32GB

Batteries and Charger: NP-FW50 Kit For Sony Alpha
USB Charger: Poweradd™ 50W Charger
Laptop: Asus ASUS Vivobook 13-inch
Portable Cell Phone and Tablet Charger: Royal Power Burst 10000
External Hard Drive: WD My Passport 1TB
Tablet: Nexus 7
Mouse: Logitech Wireless Mini Mouse

I got “Rouged” Again by Air Canada

Rouge is an Air Canada “discount” airline. It is probably the most hated carrier in Canada and is famous for cramped seats, old planes and poor service. I try to avoid Air Canada Rouge at any cost but, sometimes there is no other choice.

My last year photography trip was ruined by Rouge. My original plan for the 2014 trip was to land in Phoenix at 12 PM local time and drive to Sedona first, with the goal to be at the Grand Canyon a couple of hours before sunset. Instead, I wasted 9 hours in Toronto waiting for the replacement plane and spent the night driving from Phoenix to the Grand Canyon, missing Sedona, and both the sunset and sunrise at the Grand Canyon.

This year’s Rouge experience was less damaging but it still managed to sidetrack my trip again.

This time the Rouge flight was late by 4.5 hours. This probably is not a big deal if you go to Las Vegas to party but, when your hotel is four hours away from the airport, it makes a huge difference.

Long story short, instead of spending the evening in the Valley of Fire photographing beautiful red rocks, I had to drive directly to my hotel in Kanab.

The only photos I have from my first day of the trip are the ones I took from the plane flying over the mountains and the canyons.

  • Don’t know where you are flying from on Canada, but Vegas has lots of flights from the major airlines. We used to drive from Toronto to Buffalo to catch cheap fares on decent carriers. Now I’m closer to Seattle, but same strategy. You would never catch me on an Air Canada flight of any type to anywhere.

    • there is only one morning direct flight from Montreal to Las Vegas and it is Air Canada. There is nothing direct from Burlington as well.

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