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Using a “Sandbag” as a Tripod Alternative

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Wolf pups taken w a Nikon D200 and 400mm lens from a Denali shuttle bus using a sandbag on the windowsill

Wolf pups taken w a Nikon D200 and 400mm lens from a Denali shuttle bus using a sandbag on the windowsill

There’s a story that someone once asked Ansel Adams when he used a tripod. Reportedly, Adams’ answer was โ€œonly when I want to take a photograph!โ€

That generally sums up my philosophy. Yes, it’s a pain hauling tripods on hikes through the bush. True, there are some situations where you cannot use a tripod, such as shooting game from one of Denali National Park’s buses (the only way to get deep into the park without a special, hard-to-obtain pass). So what do you use then?

While you can simply throw clothing over a windowsill, we prefer using a sandbag. Rather than have to travel with a heavy bag full of sand, Sara made some soft-fabric bags for us. When we arrive at our destination, we hit the local grocery and pick up some plastic bags of lentils or similar. Three of these bags go into the fabric bag, creating a very effective sandbag for use from vehicles, on fences, or over branches.

Of course, when you finish your trip, you can always cook up the contents of your sandbag for a getaway meal! ๐Ÿ˜‰

Written by Craig de Fasselle

April 24th, 2010 at 11:55 am

Posted in Photo Tips

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