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02-04-2011, 03:13 PM   #16
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QuoteOriginally posted by SpecialK Quote
I would be taking a longer lens as well, but the OP seemed to be asking about wide lenses, and focal lengths in general, for the canyon.
OP didn't specify wider lenses, and I and others suggested longer glass too. I'll note a couple things:

* The vast majority of all published scenic shots are taken with a lens equivalent to the 18-55 range on APS-C. Some scenes do of course require longer or shorter focal lengths. And many details demand more specialized glass. And:

* Early fotogs most often used a 'normal' lens (equivalent to 30mm on APS-C) to make some of the most splendid historic photos. (Yeah, carry a 125-pound / 50 kg mule-back darkroom to the top of that arch...) No, one size does NOT fit all. But:

* On my first extended digicam photo tours of the LasVegas-FourCorners-Flagstaff region, I was limited to a 5mpx P&S with optics whose FOV was equivalent to 34-136mm. I was S.O.L. for longer reach, but I could (and did) approximate wideness with a bit of pano stitching.

Previously, I used a 1.1mpx digicam with a 43mm-equivalent fixed lens, and got some striking shots. Using just one 'normal' lens forced me to look very carefully. I've gone through the same country several times more recently with my K20D and a more bloated kit and I'm satisfied with its current contents: ultrawide zoom for tight spaces and certain scenics; fisheye zoom for odd angles; superzoom for general shots; fast primes for special shots. And some enlarger lenses on bellows.

* These parks and monuments contain more than just narrow canyons and vast expanses. (Warning: Using an ultrawide or fisheye to grab those vast expanses depends on the right sky, ie clouds. Clear skies are boring. Pray for monsoon.) Fine photos of all the most spectacular stuff are available as cheap postcards and screensaver discs. To go beyond the tired-and-true Kodak Moments and Arizona Highways spreads may take a bit of ingenuity and an unorthodox lens kit.

There's a tremendous amount of amazing stuff to see and explore in the area. Grand Canyon (both rims), Zion, Bryce, Cedar Breaks, Escalante, Capitol Reef, Canyonlands, Sedona (Red Rocks), Jerome, the Hisat'Sinam (Anasazi is a racial epithet) ruins such as Marble Canyon and Walnut Canyon and Mesa Verde, the Hopi mesas, Monument Valley, etc. These are all accessible must-see locales. I'm there a least a couple times a year (it's in-between my two main homes, and I've family nearby) and I never get enough of it.

Enjoy!

02-04-2011, 03:24 PM   #17
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QuoteOriginally posted by Lowell Goudge Quote
I find that even architectural detail can be captured with something in the 75-135 mm range and therefore you don need a 500 in the city.
And I find that the 18-250 is just my cup of tea in cities and small villages. Even very vertical and squeezed places like Jerome and Bisbee Arizona, Taxco Guerrero, Guanajuato, Chichicastenango, etc. And I bought my Lil'Bigma 170-500 in and for San Francisco, for architecture and for human wildlife. So we have different visions. C'est la vie.

We can constrain ourselves with whatever limitations we want. I prefer fewer constraints and thus more focal lengths.

Last edited by RioRico; 02-04-2011 at 03:29 PM.
02-05-2011, 07:26 AM   #18
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In my bag I now carry the Sigma 24-70 2.8, Penatx A 50 1.4 ,Pentax 100 DFA WR, and Sigma 300 2.8 with 1.4 and 2x TC's. I am sure I will be able to do great with this line up except the possible need for something a tad wider. I'm not into fisheyes although I have never tried one.

I do have limited funds of course so to spend $1000 on the 12-24 would mean getting just one lens instead of possible two.

I used to get out and hike alot and the FL I used then was never really below 20. Heres just a few shots. All taken with point & shoot. Perfect on those extreme outings where weight is a big factor.

Mount Borah, Idahos highest 12,600 . I failed on this outing due to a whiteout and I was solo. Returned and climbed 9/11/05


Snowking and Cyclone Lake


Ruth Mountain marker with view of Shuksan and MT Baker behind.


This is a photo af my closest friends that has since passed away from a climbing accident.



But this is new country I will be visiting so all this information being share is greatly appreciated.

Last edited by OrenMc; 02-12-2011 at 07:05 AM.
02-05-2011, 08:42 AM   #19
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I think you should think wider and closer. I'd be looking at the Sigma 8-16mm, and the bigma for 50-500mm, with a macro in the 100mm range thrown in for good measure.

From there, you could always consider the FA* 31, DA* 15, and the DA or FA* 300mm for primes. The DA 10-17mm (fish) and the Sigma 4mm (fish) might also create some interesting renditions.

Finally, if you want to create some unique looking photos, which may or may not turn out, you might think about a lensbaby composer and a few optics for it..

02-05-2011, 08:49 AM   #20
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With your budget of 1g, and the lenses you listed above, I'd look to the Sigma 8-16mm; and I'd at least try out the DA 10-17mm fish.

The only problem I've had with either of these two lenses is that so much is in your field of view, that it's super easy to get lens flare or the sun in your pic when you don't want it.

How's that Sigma 300/2.8 treating you?
02-05-2011, 09:36 AM   #21
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QuoteOriginally posted by Clinton Quote
I think you should think wider and closer. I'd be looking at the Sigma 8-16mm, and the bigma for 50-500mm, with a macro in the 100mm range thrown in for good measure.

From there, you could always consider the FA* 31, DA* 15, and the DA or FA* 300mm for primes. The DA 10-17mm (fish) and the Sigma 4mm (fish) might also create some interesting renditions.

Finally, if you want to create some unique looking photos, which may or may not turn out, you might think about a lensbaby composer and a few optics for it..
Never palyed with a lensbaby. not sure about that one.

Thanks Clinton, I would love to get the FA 31 again. I thought it was the ideal landscape lens for most purposes. Loved the clarity

QuoteOriginally posted by Clinton Quote
With your budget of 1g, and the lenses you listed above, I'd look to the Sigma 8-16mm; and I'd at least try out the DA 10-17mm fish.

IThe only problem I've had with either of these two lenses is that so much is in your field of view, that it's super easy to get lens flare or the sun in your pic when you don't want it.

How's that Sigma 300/2.8 treating you?
I have a hard time thinking ultra wide, again I have never experienced them either. Most of my landscape shooting I seem to shoot longer becasue of the miniaturization.

BTW, I am loving the Sig 300/2.8 especially on my new K5. I no loner have to worry about the detail in higher contrast images with its great DR. I have iost so many images because the broad differece in highlights and shadows. This goes with other lense also

Last edited by OrenMc; 02-13-2011 at 07:33 AM.
02-06-2011, 03:54 PM   #22
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Landscape can be done with manual focus lenses - which can be a way to control cost. This was taken at Deception Pass State Park (Whidbey Island) last summer with a very old Takumar 135 3.5 preset lens on a tripod.

I would consider a ND filter. I would consider a tripod or if hiking a bean bag. This will allow for slower shots (sun rise/sun set) or slower if you stop down to squeeze depth of field.

02-06-2011, 04:11 PM   #23
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QuoteOriginally posted by stover98074 Quote
This was taken at Deception Pass State Park (Whidbey Island) last summer with a very old Takumar 135 3.5 preset lens on a tripod.
I always enjoy seeing photos taken at Deception Pass. I spent a summer there during college (Rosario Beach Marine Biological Station) and visited there frequently when growing up in the Seattle area.


Steve

02-12-2011, 06:32 AM   #24
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QuoteOriginally posted by stevebrot Quote
I always enjoy seeing photos taken at Deception Pass. I spent a summer there during college (Rosario Beach Marine Biological Station) and visited there frequently when growing up in the Seattle area.

Steve

I get up there fairly often ( Deception Pass ). I will have to post more photos just for you Steve.

I just replaced the Sigma 24-70 with the Pentax DA 16-45/4 so I'm set on those wider shots. I still want a wide Pentax prime, preferably the A 20mm 2.8 if I can find one. If I have to I may get the DA 21 3.2. I also want to get a Pentax 85mm again to go with my 50 1.4 for portrait when I visit my children and grandkids.

Over tha past few years I have sampled quite a few different lenses ( LBA is a crazy thing ). But I have learned a lot from each lens so it was not in vain.
I want to try to stick with Pentax primes from here on out except I will be adding the DA* 50-135 because that is range I shoot a lot and because of the weather seal.

BTW, Thanks again for all the advice everyone and especially the photos.

Last edited by OrenMc; 02-12-2011 at 06:58 AM.
02-12-2011, 06:46 AM   #25
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QuoteOriginally posted by RioRico Quote
Summer-Fall 2010 I spent a couple months on the road from Yosemite to Grand Canyon, Sedona, Santa Fe, Mesa Verde, etc. I took 24+ lenses. What I actually used (in order): DA18-250, Zenitar 16/2.8, Nikkor 85/2, SMC-M28/2.8, FA50-1.4. The 16 and 28 were most-used at Grand Canyon. When I return in late Spring 2011, I'll have a Tamron 10-24, Vivitar-Komine 24/2, and Nikkor 35/2 to work out. I figure my basic kit will be the 10-24 and 18-250 zooms, and the 24+35+50+85 fast primes, and a Raynox. I'll still take 25-30 lenses -- I'm booked into Grand Canyon for a week, Santa Fe for a month, Four Corners for a couple weeks, so they'll all get used this time. Maybe.
You should look up Deadwolfbones and I during your month in Santa Fe.
02-12-2011, 06:59 AM   #26
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QuoteOriginally posted by OrenMc Quote
I get up ther fairly often ( Deception Pass ). I will have to post more photos just for you Steve.

I just replaced the Sigma 24-70 with the Pentax DA 16-45/4 so I'm set on those wider shots. I still want a wide Pentax prime, preferably the A 20mm 2.8 if I can find one. If I have to I may get the DA 21 3.2. I also want to get a Pentax 85mm again to go with my 50 1.4 for portrait when I visit my children and grandkids.

Over tha past few years I have sampled quite a few different lenses ( LBA is a crazy thing ). But I have learned a lot from each lens so it was not in vain.
I want to try to stick with Pentax primes from here on out except I will be adding the DA* 50-135 becase that is range I shoot a lot and because of the weather seal.

BTW, Thanks again for all the advice everyone and especially the photos.
The 20mm 2.8 is reputed to be a terrific lens if you shoot film as well as digital. It seems to be hard to find at a good price, and I stuck with the M20/4 for film. For hiking with a DSLR, I'm not sure the performance advantage of the 20/2.8 is significant enough to add the weight or lose the autofocus. I've been happy with the performance of the DA21 as an outdoor WA and the size and weight are a big plus.
02-12-2011, 07:15 AM   #27
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I have a few shots in my gallery from a trip to Utah 2 years ago. I took the kit lens and a 135mm. The kit lens worked out pretty well and I used the 135 for a few shots. But a prime or zoom closer to 200 would have been a better choice than the 135.
02-12-2011, 07:21 AM   #28
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QuoteOriginally posted by joebob Quote
I have a few shots in my gallery from a trip to Utah 2 years ago. I took the kit lens and a 135mm. The kit lens worked out pretty well and I used the 135 for a few shots. But a prime or zoom closer to 200 would have been a better choice than the 135.
The 135 is nice because it is often faster, but a cheap, light 200 like the M200/4 has come in handy on hikes for me.
02-12-2011, 10:54 AM   #29
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It does depend on where you are going and what you plan to see. The 10-17 was the perfect lens for taking pictures in Antelope Canyon, the DA*50-135 was useful for details. I used the FA 77 a couple of times, but the 50-135 was a better choice (my hubby used it). You can see what I came up with in this album: Zenfolio | Mtngal's Photos | Antelope Canyon , many of the shots are actually 5 shot exposures and merged to HDR using photomatix.

I just looked through a bunch of pictures I took in Sedona (which aren't very good, it wasn't a good trip for me). I used the fish-eye occasionally but used primarily the 12-24 and 50-135. I do remember wishing quite often on this trip that I had had something between 24 and 50 (I now own the 35 macro, still want the 16-50), and I did a number of stitched panoramas, shot with the 50-135. If you are interested, there's a couple of reasonable pictures in the album along with a lot of junk, it starts here: Zenfolio | Mtngal's Photos | Sedona . The photo info tab has the focal length etc. that I used.

The only time I've visited Zion since buying a dSLR the weather was lousy and I didn't handle it well at all. I remember using the DA*300 for some deer and the 50-135 mostly, with some 12-24 also. Bryce could use both something wide and something long for detail shots (last time I was there I used a Sony F717, I think and I wanted something longer than it's 180mm equivalent).

I recommend also taking a macro lens, if you do that type of stuff at all. I don't use one all that much when I'm traveling, but have found later than I've always enjoyed the close-ups as a good break from vast, sweeping landscape shots.

For the Grand Canyon, I'd probably want to have a normal lens like the 16-50, the 50-135 and then something longer.

All this talking about what lenses I'd want to use makes me want to go again.
02-13-2011, 07:27 AM   #30
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QuoteOriginally posted by GeneV Quote
The 20mm 2.8 is reputed to be a terrific lens if you shoot film as well as digital. It seems to be hard to find at a good price, and I stuck with the M20/4 for film. For hiking with a DSLR, I'm not sure the performance advantage of the 20/2.8 is significant enough to add the weight or lose the autofocus. I've been happy with the performance of the DA21 as an outdoor WA and the size and weight are a big plus.
Yes, the 20 2.8 seems to have a great reputation and MF for landscapes is no problem. It seems to run around the same price as the DA21 also ( maybe a litttle cheaper than a new 21 ). But like you said, the size and weight is a big plus.
With the DA 16-45 I now have I really don't need that FL but LBA is the devil on my shoulder whispering in my ear saying I need a Pentax prime.
After all, why own a Pentax and not take advantage of their wonderful primes.

QuoteOriginally posted by joebob Quote
I have a few shots in my gallery from a trip to Utah 2 years ago. I took the kit lens and a 135mm. The kit lens worked out pretty well and I used the 135 for a few shots. But a prime or zoom closer to 200 would have been a better choice than the 135.
Here I am thinking of an WA and you say 200mm would have been useful. Just wondering what your reasoning would be on that one. Although, I recall in my hiking days and carrying a 12x zoom P&S I did use the long end a lot. Its not always possible to get very close to some places.

QuoteOriginally posted by mtngal Quote
It does depend on where you are going and what you plan to see. The 10-17 was the perfect lens for taking pictures in Antelope Canyon, the DA*50-135 was useful for details. I used the FA 77 a couple of times, but the 50-135 was a better choice (my hubby used it). You can see what I came up with in this album: Zenfolio | Mtngal's Photos | Antelope Canyon , many of the shots are actually 5 shot exposures and merged to HDR using photomatix.

I just looked through a bunch of pictures I took in Sedona (which aren't very good, it wasn't a good trip for me). I used the fish-eye occasionally but used primarily the 12-24 and 50-135. I do remember wishing quite often on this trip that I had had something between 24 and 50 (I now own the 35 macro, still want the 16-50), and I did a number of stitched panoramas, shot with the 50-135. If you are interested, there's a couple of reasonable pictures in the album along with a lot of junk, it starts here: Zenfolio | Mtngal's Photos | Sedona . The photo info tab has the focal length etc. that I used.

The only time I've visited Zion since buying a dSLR the weather was lousy and I didn't handle it well at all. I remember using the DA*300 for some deer and the 50-135 mostly, with some 12-24 also. Bryce could use both something wide and something long for detail shots (last time I was there I used a Sony F717, I think and I wanted something longer than it's 180mm equivalent).

I recommend also taking a macro lens, if you do that type of stuff at all. I don't use one all that much when I'm traveling, but have found later than I've always enjoyed the close-ups as a good break from vast, sweeping landscape shots.

For the Grand Canyon, I'd probably want to have a normal lens like the 16-50, the 50-135 and then something longer.

All this talking about what lenses I'd want to use makes me want to go again.
Thanks for the links to some of your work. Beautiful! I hope I can make it to Antelope Canyon. I don't like the idea of a guide but with the photographers pass and not being so limited I think it would be fine.
You recommended taking a macro lens. To be honest, I don't go anywhere without one
As it now stands I will carry, DA 16-45, ( next purchase DA 50-135 ), DFA WR 100 macro, Sigma 300/2.8 and my Pentax A 50 1.4. I will do fine with just these and feel blessed to have them.
However there is my wish list. Hoping to slip in the 20mm or 21mm and would love to have the FA 77 again.

Looking at all the photos that have been posted has really got me excited. I will be taking my son and daughter so I know this will be an extra special trip.
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