Alaskan cruise, general advise

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Jan 6, 2007
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My wife and I will be going on an Alaskan cruise to celebrate our 30th anniversary. I would appreciate any advise any of you would have.

Storing photos, this could be an issue as I don't plan on taking a laptop.

A tripod, not sure if this makes sense. Might be a huge pain.

Just looking for some tips from people that have been on a cruise with shore excursions.
 
Joined
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I just got back from a cruise to Alaska. I wouldn't bother taking a tripod. I didn't take one and there were only 2 times that I wish that I had one and I was still able to get the shot. Looking at your lenses in your Signature I would think you can get by with your 16-85 and 70-300 VR. I did take my 300 F4 and a 1.4 tc and it did come in handy but I could have gotten by without it. If your not taking a laptop then take a lot of memory cards. I took over 3000 pictures and I could have taken a lot more. Enjoy the cruise.
 
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I shot 70G raw last time I went. However, that was a week on land and a week on the ship. Previous trip, on the ship only, I shot 48G. If you aren't shooting raw, then storage may not be so bad.
 
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I wish I had taken faster glass. I had a cheapie 70-300 (Not the new one) and it was overcast the whole trip and the pictures were terrible.
 
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I've not cruised Alaska, but have cruised the Antarctic and the Caribbean. I used a monopod in the Antarctic where, in lower early morning light, I needed some extra stability. It's a good compromise between tripod/no tripod.
A zoom such as the 16-85, your 70-300VR and either your 30mm or 50mm prime would be my choice.
An iPad or similar is a good idea if you have one, otherwise as has been said, make sure you take plenty memory cards!!
Whatever you do, enjoy yourself
 
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Toronto, Canada
I have been to a number of cruises but never to Alaska ( it's in the works as I have been told that it is spectacular). Although I had brought a tripod to a few of those cruises, I don't remember using them. If you want to travel light, and you want to make your 30th anniversary celebration as your top priority, I'd say don't bother.

In my case, I used 24-120 f/4 95% of the time.
 
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My wife and I went last year for our 30th. Took a cruise with Dolphin Charters. The cruise was specifically geared toward photographic opportunities. I have never taken the large cruise ships in Alaska. I did bring a tripod and used it quite a bit. Recommend bringing a wide angle, medium zoom and a large lens that will go to 400, and add a telextender if you have one. You can see a portion of my photos here, http://www.threepairsphoto.com/Travel/Alaska-2012 . I took approximately 5,500 photos and had my laptop with flashdrives for back-up. If you are not bringing an external storage device, I suggest picking up some extra memory cards.
 
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Did the Inside Passage cruise in 2007 on our honeymoon, awesome, you'll love it.

At the time I wasn't into photography quite so much but if I was to go again I'd definitely take a good telephoto, saw lots of bald eagles and went on the tip of a lifetime, whalewatching at Juneau and saw humpbacks bubblefeeding..can't even put it into words but not having a decent telephoto I missed most of the good shots.

I wouldn't bother with a tripod either as you'll mostly be sightseeing during daylight hours and it probably won't work too well on the ship with the vibrations/movement..a monopod is definitely a good idea though and easier to setup/carry around.

Have a great time, sure you will

Simon
 
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Troy,
Do you shoot raw or jpg? How much available space do you have on your tablet?

I'll shoot raw on anything I deem necessary, i.e. whale watching, Eagles etc. and I'll shoot jpg for the average stuff. I would not want to process every photo from RAW.

I might be changing my mind on bringing the lap top. I'm even wondering if i should bring the 300f4 or maybe the 70-200vr.

Originally I wanted to keep it simple, D300s- 16-85vr and 70-300vr. Then we booked this whale watching tour that was geared towards photography, so now I want to make the most of it.

I am a little worried about convenience though as well as having all this equipment staying in our room on the ship a lot of the time.
 
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We've done several cruises on several lines. Security has never been a problem for us. I think you will be sorry, if you don't take your laptop.
 
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Have a great time and post some pictures when you get back.
 
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You will have a MARVELOUS time! You can have your pictures transferred from your memory card to a CD on board, and the price wasn't too outrageous the times we went.
A tripod is mostly an unnecessary encumbrance on a cruise, IMO. You can 't set it up on the deck very well, because the contstant vibration of the engines will cause unsharpness.

Now: on the pointy end of the boat, you will find a doorway that will lead to the bow deck. Good photo opportunities there, but cold and windy, if the ship is moving right along.

Both times we were there, they were having a heatwave, so my silk longies, fleece sweater, cammie pants, Gore-Tex parka and other cold-weather clothing were not strictly necessary.
A warm sweater, light windbreaker (waterproof, if the weather is like it usually is) and a hat/cap will be, enough. It's kinda hard to use a camera and manipulate an umbrella, too.
Don't forget a suit for the "dress-up" evenings.

Otherwise, jeans, slacks, etc, will do fine.

Oh, You're gonna love it! :smile: The food is good, too!:wink:
 

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