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08-18-2011, 11:31 AM   #1
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2nd Backpacking Lens - DA14, DA16-45 or stitch?

I am leaving for a backpacking trip in the Wind River Mountains of Wyoming today.
I was originally planning on just bringing my DA 40mm, but now am thinking about bringing another lens.

I wanted to save weight, so my original plan was to just stitch photos together when I wanted something wider.
Is this a viable option, or would I be losing too much?

I am considering bringing a 2nd lens, either the DA 14mm or the DA 16-45mm.

They both weigh about the same, but they are both a pain becuase of the size and weight.

I sometimes have a hard time with the 14 outdoors because, like ultrawides, it shrinks background mountains and makes things in the foregorund look huge.

But, with the 16-45, is there much advantage over the 14mm if I am already bringing the DA 40mm? I think the 40 will be on my camera most of the time, due to weight and size.

08-18-2011, 11:35 AM   #2
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Stitch. It sounds like you really don't want to bring the wider lenses. People take landscapes with 85mm and stitch. I use a 35mm often for landscapes, a 40 should be just fine.
08-18-2011, 11:53 AM   #3
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I think 40 would be too tight for backpacking generally...if I was going with one lens, I wouldn't want any tighter than 28mm, but would also have a backup for wider. (somewhere in the 15-20mm range) If you will be backpacking with a group and need to stay together, then it may not be practical for you to take 12-16 photos for stitching to capture a wide scene. If you group likes a lot of breaks and is willing to stop for you, then it might be ok.

Pretty much every time I go backpacking, I've got my 16-50mm DA* lens. I trust it out there due to the weather sealing, and it opens up wide enough for my liking, and at the same time can still do pretty good portraits and tight landscapes. I have taken a 28mm prime lens as a second lens to keep on the camera during good weather when wide isn't needed, it's great for general people shots, groups shots, most scenery. I have also taken my 50-135mm DA* as a second lens sometimes. Definitely not a necessity, but I did use it for a few shots that I could not have managed otherwise. However, K-7 + 2 DA* lenses + tripod eats up a good 7 or 8 lbs.


Anyways, back to your original question, if I were you, I'd definitely take the 16-45mm, and keep it on the camera. Throw the 40mm in your pocket if you need to make a portrait or have a critical landscape that needs every pixel of detail resolved. Actually I would just say leave it at home, but I know you want to take it .

Whatever you end up choosing, please let us know and then share you experience and some images! I always love to hear how people feel about their lens choices for traveling (especially backpacking), especially after they get back to know if there are any shots they absolutely loved or missed due to inadequate lens selections.
08-18-2011, 11:56 AM   #4
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16-45mm

08-18-2011, 12:04 PM   #5
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I would just take the 40 if you want to travel very light. And just don't think about taking wide photo's, just concentrate on what you can do with the 40.
But if you want to take a second lens, take the 16-45. 16 is wide enough for most shots. And the lens has fantastic close-focus properties. So you could take some nice "macro"shots
08-18-2011, 01:28 PM   #6
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DA40mm + Stitch

AutoStich (AutoStitch) and Hugin (Hugin - Panorama photo stitcher) are two excellent freewares for stitiching, with superb outcomes. I used both (also I tend to prefer Hugin) and they work best with a prime lens with low lens distortion (like the 40mm).

Hope that the comment will help...
08-18-2011, 02:09 PM   #7
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For light travel the 40mm is perfect. Anything you really need.
08-18-2011, 03:25 PM   #8
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On my last trip in the Winds I carried the DA* 16-50 and the DFA 100 wr and that worked for me. However there are situations where I like the wide angle distortion. If that is not for you carry the 40 and stitch it will be relatively light and easy to handle and that counts for a lot.

The utility of zoom when hiking with a group that is not there to take photos cannot be overstated. At home I never have the zooms mounted, but even taking up the rear on the trail and catching up I appreciate the ability to rapidly compose in more than one fov and move on.

Whatever you try let us know how it worked. Travel safe.


Last edited by Gyre; 08-18-2011 at 03:34 PM.
08-18-2011, 03:35 PM   #9
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+1 for the 40mm... but also... I have a walking stick with a camera screw mount I added to the top to make pans easier...
08-18-2011, 05:47 PM   #10
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I'd be taking a DA15 or DA21 if you have one, otherwise do you have the Kit 18-55?
08-18-2011, 08:19 PM   #11
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I'm not sure if the OP already owns the 16-45 or is looking for advice on a purchase. But if it's a new lens in question, the DA21 is close to perfect for a single lens option.
08-18-2011, 11:13 PM   #12
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A wide angle is almost essential for landscapes. I went with the DA 15 because of the size and weight. I would bring the 16-45 along. I haven't found the DA 40 to be all that useful on hikes although it's so small it's never an issue to bring along. I'll agree with the advice on the DA 21. The majority of my landscape shots with the 18-55 are right around 21 mm.
08-19-2011, 01:06 AM   #13
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take da14 for occassional quick wide shots (when you for some reason wouldn't have time do do several shots for stitching)
08-19-2011, 04:05 AM   #14
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So, obviously with stitching software, you end up with panoramas, not photos in a 2 by 3 or 4 by 5 format. I am not such a big fan of super wide lenses either. As you say, they tend to magnify the foreground and shrink the back ground. Another lens to consider would be a DA 21. Not quite as wide, but super-nice rendering and colors from what I've seen.
08-19-2011, 09:43 AM   #15
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I disagree that wideangle = landscapes. I have 10-17 FE and 10-24 UWA and 16mm and 21mm lenses, but what I mostly use for 'scapes are 24mm and 28mm. My recommendation: the 16-45.
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