Have you ever wondered what goes into making the photos I take? Well besides a lot of blood, sweat, and tears there is quite a lot of gear lugged into the backcountry. Now I’m a firm believer in the fact that it’s not the gear that matters, but the photographer. On that note, I do get a lot of questions about what gear I travel with. My “kit” varies a lot depending on whether I’m heading to do a day hike outside of Bozeman, Montana, or traveling around Namibia for a month. But there are some standards that almost always go with me on ever excursion, and this list will cover that.




 Above you’ll seen the standard kit. Here’s the breakdown:

 Camera essentials:

  • Two bodies: the 6D and 60D, which allows me to put a telephoto on one and a wide angle on the other making sure I don’t miss a shot because I’m changing lenses.
  • Lenses: This varies, but the standard for me to carry is the Canon 70-200 f/2.8 IS II, Canon 16-35 f/2.8 II, Canon 24mm TS-E, Rokinon 14mm f/2.8, Canon 24-105 f/4 IS, and the Canon 100mm Macro f/2.8 (not pictured).
  • Flash: Canon Speedlite 430 EX II with Gary Fong Half Dome diffuser.
  • Microphone: RØDE video mic.
  • Other cameras: GoPro 3 Black Edition (not pictured) and Sony Rx100 (not pictured) with underwater housing.
  • The bag: After a lot of research I settled on the F-stop Tilopa BC. It was pricey, but well worth it in the end. I love the interchangeable camera units (ICU) that allow me to take as much or little gear as I want.
  • Tripod: Pictured here is the MeFoto Roadtrip Tripod, but I’m in the market for a new tripod.

Non-Photography Essentials

  • The laptop: Macbook Pro Retina 13″….recently I made the switch to Macbook and I love it. I needed something small and portable that had good processing power and storage while also giving me a killer battery life to edit while on the road. I found a great deal on B&H Photo for this laptop with 8gb of RAM and 750gb of flash storage for $500 off the normal price.
  • Kindle Paperwhite: I love this little gadget, it offers me killer battery life for reading on the road. A lot of times I end up getting to a location I want to shoot, and then having a few hours to kill before the light might be right to shoot the scene. So I set up my gear, get in my hammock and read. Which brings me to my next item…
  • Kammok Roo and Python Straps, one of my favorite new editions to my pack is this killer backpacking hammock. It’s so compact and goes up in a flash. Great for waiting around for the light to be right, or if I’m running a time-lapse and there isn’t much else to do.
  • Let there be light: For light in the backcountry I carry two. I have a blackdiamond Icon Headlamp as well as a Fenix TK15 400 lumen flashlight. They help me to navigate the backcountry while out doing my night photography as well as light painting during those night shots.
  • Randoms: Water filtration system, first aid kit, Goal Zero solar panels, Jet Boil, Hydro Flask (aka a fancy water bottle), rain jacket, bear spray, pocket knife, and other random stuff depending on the needs of the shoot!

So there you have it! I know I’m missing some stuff, so I’ll add to this list as I remember more. As always, if you have any questions, whether they are gear related, photography related, or the meaning to life… feel free to leave them in the comments below or shoot me an email.

Happy shooting,

Andy Austin | Owner/Photographer
Peak Photography of Montana
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