Jump to content
  • Announcements

    • olyclimber

      WELCOME TO THE CASCADECLIMBERS.COM FORUMS   02/03/18

      We have upgraded to new forum software as of late last year, and it makes everything here so much better!  It is now much easier to do pretty much anything, including write Trip Reports, sell gear, schedule climbing related events, and more. There is a new reputation system that allows for positive contributors to be recognized,  it is possible to tag content with identifiers, drag and drop in images, and it is much easier to embed multimedia content from Youtube, Vimeo, and more.  In all, the site is much more user friendly, bug free, and feature rich!   Whether you're a new user or a grizzled cascadeclimbers.com veteran, we think you'll love the new forums. Enjoy!
Sign in to follow this  
Eric Anderson

DSLRs and Rainier

Recommended Posts

I'm a fairly serious amateur photographer and am planning on bringing my slr (D90) and one or two lenses when I climb Rainier but curious about a couple things, mostly batter life. I only have two batteries for it because I get between 1500 and 2000 shots with that but I know the cold is going to shorten that life. How dramatic is it? Can I still get several hundred shots per battery? Any other tips for keeping an SLR in the cold other than keeping it in a plastic bag until it's temperature matches the surrounding air?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

SLRs are heavy. How fit are you?

 

Stopping to take pics with your SLR will piss off your partners. Are they ok with it?

 

I would say those are a bigger concern than battery capacity since you can pick up a non-OEM battery pretty cheap at Amazon.

 

One tip for battery life - keep the battery in an inside pocket and keep the camera outside in the cold. Use live view to frame when you can. It won't fog up like the viewfinder.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Also I'm not sure I agree with your plastic bag idea. I don't have any direct experience to back me up here, but aren't you at risk of trapping warm moist air in there and then letting it get cold which would accumulate a lot of condensation?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I'm using it when we stop, not in the middle of climbing.

 

 

 

Also I'm not sure I agree with your plastic bag idea. I don't have any direct experience to back me up here, but aren't you at risk of trapping warm moist air in there and then letting it get cold which would accumulate a lot of condensation?

 

It's a pretty standard thing to do in cold weather. If you keep your camera inside a tent, lodge, house or whatever when it's cold out, you can put it inside a bag, wait until the camera and bag cool down and take it out. Same process if you go back inside a warm building, otherwise the lens and camera will get condensation.

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I carry a DSLR on trips. I don't use the plastic bag trick though -- mostly because the tent is rarely much warmer than outside when I first climb inside. If the tent is 20+ degrees warmer than outside you'd want a plastic bag but otherwise I just take the battery out and leave the camera inside its case and pressed up against the wall of the tent (not in-between sleeping bags) and then sleep with the battery(ies).

 

As for how many shots you can get... hard to say. On my last 5 day trip I carried a G11, SD880 and D80. In total I took about 300 shots with all cameras combined and drained the battery on the 880 but had 2 bars left on both other cameras.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

2 batts in a D90 you'll be fine. i take my D3000 ice climbing and in single digit temps it lasts for several hundred shots on a charge over several days. same with a winter climb up Whitney.

 

also i never temp matched mine. just stow and go, point and shoot!

 

be sure to post a TR with some of the pics.

 

T

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

How many days will you be on the mountain? A single push or 2 days you could probably get by with one. If you are concerned, an extra battery isn't much compared to the weight of the camera. When I am only taking pictures at rest breaks I struggle to take more than 1 or 2 hundred pics for a climb, so one battery is plenty.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Condensation is only concern going cold to warm. I take my 30D or 40D on my climbs. I don't worry about condensation until I get back home. I pack in my pack after the climb and leave it to gradually warm up. I like to have 3 batteries two stay warm and one stays in the camera....and then I just take my 4GB card.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

How long are you going to be on rainier, I just did a week in iceland with my d90 and took 900 pictures on one battery, I can imagine taking enough shots to kill the battery in a rainier climb if your there to climb not to take pictures. Also turn off the review on your lcd for better battery life and so you waste less time staring at the camera.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Get a light lens and if you are buying a DSLR strictly for climbing, consider the rebel xs- the lightest dslr canon makes. Pair that with a prime 50 lens and you have one heck of a light set-up. Now toss on a 2.5 # wide angle and you will experience another side of the spectrum.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

keep the battery in your breast pocket or it will die and only bring one light lens. you won't have enough time to fuck around changing lenses on a rope team. if you have a point and shoot you might just want to take that instead, lighter and they still take really good pictures, also you can keep the whole camera in your pocket, so longer batt life.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

keep the battery in the camera and you'll be fine

 

keep the battery in your breast pocket and you won't take any pictures with your SLR because your climbing partner will turn around and go home

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

if you get electronics soaking wet, its usually best to wait till they dry out before turning them on. unless they are designed for those conditions. this I have learned the hard way. Usually what happens is the smoke escapes out of their chips, and they don't work as well when that happens.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I carry my DSLR on almost all of my trips. I brought an extra battery on my most recent long trip (6 days) but ended up not even needing it. I didn't even bother taking out the battery at night, but on a cold trip at altitude I probably would. With that said, I was happy to pay $25 for an off-brand spare battery to just carry, knowing I wouldn't be at risk of losing power and carrying around two pounds of dead weight. If I were you, I'd say bring an extra battery for the piece of mind you'll have and you won't have to worry about babying the main battery as much.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I should probably clarify... if the temps are below ~15 degrees keep the batt in your pocket. otherwise whatever. I went up chair this winter in subzero temps and my fully charged battery was dead before I even turned the camera on half way up the face. the 2nd time I kept the batt in my jacket and had no problems, other then fiddling in and out a battery kinda sucks when you want to take pictures.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I dont agree with those that say keep the battery in your pocket. I have never had an issue with Nikon Batteries. Your D90 and two batteries will be fine. I had my d300 at 21,000 ft yesterday and had no issues with the cold.

 

I wrote an article on this a last year for an AAI newsletter. You can find it here.

 

http://alasdairturner.blogspot.com/2009/03/this-is-article-i-wrote-few-months-ago.html

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Were you in a plane or something? How'd you get back to civilization so quickly?

No Im in Bolivia. Illimani yesterday

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

In my experience, beware the off-brand batteries (at least for canon). They work OK for a few months, then go to hell rather quickly and won't hold a charge. Unfortunately, I guess you get what you pay for.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Also, I never remove battery and mostly keeping camera on, all the time (at home or in mountains).

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now

Sign in to follow this  

×