No pack mule....will travel

Discussion in 'Large Format Cameras and Accessories' started by Tom Smith, Sep 8, 2004.

  1. Tom Smith

    Tom Smith Member

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    Hi there,

    I'm really pooped. After 20 minutes walking with a folding monorail and tripod, I seem to get really tired. I'm not unfit or anything, but I'm starting to think I am.

    Looking at luggage options, I'd really like a decent pack mule or a 4 person sedan. But as I'm just about scraping enough for my study courses, it's not happening. I absolutely love the monorail; and absolutely need the tripod. None of that is going to shed any of its weight. So I've got to figure out a way to carry it along with 10 darkslides; roll film back and a coupla filters with a meter, a bottle of water and some packed carbohydrate and glucose. I tend to wear what I can and carry the rest until I break out in sweat.

    What do all you Lifers do? Any portable solutions around this? I'm not planning to make it up to Everest with the monorail - just small hills, around 500metres - without calling the ER team.

    Cheers,

    Tom
     
  2. mark

    mark Member

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    May I suggest smaller hills:smile:

    Actually I find that a good photo backpack makes all of the difference. Once I got mine I was able to go a lot further than I could before. My back pack is not made any more. It is a Hakuba. If this is not your cup of tea there are those pull behind carts, basically a wagon on steroids.
     
  3. juan

    juan Subscriber

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    I use a pull-type golf cart. The tripod goes where the golf bag was intended, and I've devised a basket at the bottom to hold the camera. I carry film holders and other stuff in a back pack. The golf cart's wheels are made to roll over moderately rough terrain. I found said golf cart beside the road awaiting the garbage man.
    juan
     
  4. Black Dog

    Black Dog Member

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    the hardest mile.

    I use a lowe alpine hiking pack and carry fewer darkslides-the weight of these really can be a killer. Lighter lenses like fuji cs, nikon m and g claron help too. And look in hiking magazines like Trail (uk) for lightweight backpacking tips. Otherwise you could drill more holes in your toothbrush(lol...)
     
  5. Flotsam

    Flotsam Member

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  6. Tom Smith

    Tom Smith Member

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    "May I suggest smaller hills"


    Mark! behave yourself ;>)

    Sounds like my worse combination will be to go on steroids and push a wagon full of stuffed up darkslides. I thought I was being conservative, bringing just 10. After I run out, then I go home. You're probably right about using a proper backpack than a side-slung bag. I'll have to check out the Lowe Pro, but I half think it won't be half-big enough. And giving up my teeth to save weight isn't an option.

    The golf-cart sounds like a great idea Juan, but I don't want to look like a baglady or man for that matter. Actually looks don't matter, right? I'm going to look this one up then.

    Neal - the link didn't work for me.
     
  7. Flotsam

    Flotsam Member

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    That's odd. It works on both my computers. :confused:
     
  8. glbeas

    glbeas Member

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    If you're shooting 4x5 maybe you should get 2 or 3 grafmatics. I can carry all 8 of my grafmatics in my backpack at 6 sheets per thats 48 sheets. I usually don't though, I normally load up 2 or 3 of them and put in a half dozen regular holders in the remaining spaces. I found grafmatics are great with that old infrared film I've been playing with, they're all metal and have no IR leaks whatsoever.
    Of course my camera only weighs in at 3 or 4 pounds max, it's a wood field camera, Anba Ikeda. That leaves me with a lot more cargo capacity.
     
  9. John McCallum

    John McCallum Member

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    Another alternative: just take say 4 film holders, a small change tent and as many sheets as you like without taking up much space.

    Like Neal's idea. :smile: Do they come with 'mag' wheels and suspension for offroading?
     
  10. Flotsam

    Flotsam Member

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    Forget that! If I had the dough I'd pop for a pair of these:
    http://www.roleez.com/wheels.htm

    Now that would be one sweet ride.
     
  11. papagene

    papagene Membership Council Council

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    Holy mogly Neal, thems wheels are expensive! Your cart is a great idea, I might have to build one for myself - maybe.
    gene
     
  12. glbeas

    glbeas Member

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    I think you can buy replacement wheelbarrow wheels about the same size a bit cheaper.
     
  13. Tom Smith

    Tom Smith Member

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    The wheelborrow and wheels is just perfect! Thanks for that Neal.

    This is such a cool idea. All I need is some tartan fabric to go with it :wink:
     
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  15. Flotsam

    Flotsam Member

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    The only downside that I see to wheelbarrow wheels is that they are generally made out of steel and so are kind of heavy. Being pneumatic they would probably handle rough terrain with ease. They'd be cheaper than those Roleez things but, hey... what isn't? :smile:
     
  16. Tom Smith

    Tom Smith Member

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    Neal -

    there is one on the website which is made of aluminium. That's the one I had in mind.

    If I put a crash helmet on and turn it on its side, I could just toboggan down 500metres of hill.....
     
  17. Flotsam

    Flotsam Member

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    Cool! Give me the link. Those would be a nice upgrade to my... um... dang! I forgot to come up up with a name for the darned thing.

    I think we're looking at new Olympic sport in '08
     
  18. John McCallum

    John McCallum Member

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    How 'bout "Tri-Pundler". Re Olymic Sport - definately! with different weight classes: 35mm, med, LF and ULF.
     
  19. ian_greant

    ian_greant Member

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    Hi Tom,

    How much does all your gear weigh? A quick trip to the scales will give you an idea of whether you are being hard or easy on yourself.

    I've got crappy knees, use hiking poles and am not in that great of shape, mind you everyones definition is different. I find for technical hiking (steep, boulders, gravel, roots, lots of chances to fall on yer face) my limit is about 40 lbs in a normal type backpack.

    For standard well conditioned hiking trails closer to sea level I've treked with 55 - 60 lbs and put on 10 - 16 K in a day.

    However, I do pant, sweat, grunt and even curse when I hit the steep hills.. especially at the start of the warm season..

    Just think of it positively.. all the rest breaks will give you time to really absorb the surrounding landscape. :wink:

    Cheers,
     
  20. James Bleifus

    James Bleifus Member

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    Hi Tom,

    I use the Super Trekker II. Got it off eBay at a great price. I'm not in great shape but I'm able to carry my 5 X 7, 7 holders, etc, etc. for hours up and down ravines along the ocean. It will even fit some tripods on the back (though, sadly, not mine).

    Cheers,

    James
     
  21. John Kasaian

    John Kasaian Member

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    Costco has a California Innovations cooler with very durable wheels, shoulder strap and a folding handle, I think it cost about $20 or so. For fun, I got one and dragged it around Mariposa Grove, up hill and down on dirt trails with a v8 'dorff, two lenses, a half dozen holders, light meter, filters, cleaning kit and dark cloth aboard. Worked quite nicely. I like the thermal qualities of using a cooler. When encountering boulders, I simple folded the handle and slung the shoulder strap over my shoulder and soldiered on. Might be worth looking into!
     
  22. Flotsam

    Flotsam Member

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    So, what'd you do with your' beer?
     
  23. roteague

    roteague Member

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    There was another thread last month about the same subject - "Burn that backpack". There were some interesting ideas in it, worth looking up.
     
  24. Tom Smith

    Tom Smith Member

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    Neal - here's the aluminium carrier I was thinking of. It's around 5kg and looks great for wheeling around slopes: http://www.roleez.com/view_folding_wheel_cart.htm

    Do you think a chain-driven bicycle motor could power it uphill? I guess I could just as easily push.


    Ian - just weighed my outdoor pack kit. It comes up to 22kg. Good or bad?


    Thanks for the thread suggestion roteague - I'll look it up.
     
  25. Flotsam

    Flotsam Member

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    That looks nice and the price is right.
    I used solid 8" wheels and I have been quite surprised at how well they work even over rough terrain, rocks and fallen saplings.
     
  26. John Kasaian

    John Kasaian Member

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    Neal, Robert: The Costco cooler that I purchased was because of the post "burn that back pack" that inspired me to check it out. The results: It works, its inexpensive, it performs well at short distances(about a mile or three) and is rugged. The best part is nobody asks "Is that a Hasselblad?" They will ask you if you'll sell 'em a cold beer though;-)

    That said, the cooler on wheels won't replace my Lowe Pro or my mule. It all depends on how far away from your car you want to travel and the terrain. It sure beats carrying a rigid camera box or slinging a tripod mounted camera over you shoulder for 1,000 yards though!

    Cheers!