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Thread: How do you deal with snow / inclement weather?

  1. #21

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    Re: How do you deal with snow / inclement weather?

    I have pretty good luck with the mitten/fingerless gloves that hunters and fly fishermen use. When you don't need the dexterity you can flip the mitten part over your fingertips to keep them warm(er). Orvis sells one for fly fishermen that has a little additional thumb-mitten so you can have all five finger tips available.

  2. #22
    Greg Greg Blank's Avatar
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    Re: How do you deal with snow / inclement weather?

    I've never been fond of shooting while its percipitating, for obvious reasons and snow especially shows up as blurrs on the film. It can be nice for effect in one or two images perhaps, I have a few like that. Never been concerned about getting gear initially wet, though upon leaving the outdoors I quickly dry off my camera and lens with a towel or other lintless clean cloth- typically I don't cover the camera-maybe sometimes the lens with a darkcloth. I agree that subdued sunlight is the best for color imagery and many times b&w, however I have some really nice images b&w that were overcast snow scenes, which required expanded development and lots of contrast to print, nice moody snow images with fog.
    "Great things are accomplished by talented people who believe they will
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    www.gbphotoworks.com

  3. #23
    jp's Avatar
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    Re: How do you deal with snow / inclement weather?

    Quote Originally Posted by Bruce Barlow View Post
    I have found that photographing in lousy weather usually doesn't yield worthwhile images, because the light is so flat. I wait until the sun comes out, and then usually only have to deal with the cold. Snow and ice in bright sunshine - now yer talkin'!

    In the meantime, comfort food, good wine, a fireplace, Bill Evans on the stereo, and a blonde.
    Overcast on a snowy field is essentially God's light tent / softbox. I haven't seen sunshine for a week but it's always appreciated.

  4. #24
    ROL's Avatar
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    Re: How do you deal with snow / inclement weather?

    Quote Originally Posted by Bruce Barlow View Post
    I have found that photographing in lousy weather usually doesn't yield worthwhile images, because the light is so flat.
    And that is when color merges to monochrome and all kinds of interesting things may occur if you know where to look and how to deal with it.

    Double Tree, Leidig Meadow


    New Snow, Oak Branch


    Snowstorm, Merced River

    True, the "images" themselves have no intrinsic value, but I consider the GSP's at least as worthwhile as the inherent silver.

  5. #25

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    Re: How do you deal with snow / inclement weather?

    Quote Originally Posted by Ari View Post
    I am still searching for that ideal pair of gloves that will allow me to keep my fingers toasty while performing the finesse movements required on a VC.
    Cloth, dark brown Jersey Gloves are the best I have found. I wore them in construction and I could pick up screws out of the pouch on my leather tool belt. They are not the warmest but you can work in them.

    Buy them by the bag. They do wear out quick.

  6. #26
    I live in Connecticut now.
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    How do you deal with snow / inclement weather?

    Quote Originally Posted by Drew Wiley View Post
    Stone, I've got decades of experience doing this kind of thing, including a lot of mountain experience with view cameras under all kinds of conditions. Some camera and tripods are obviously much better than others under extreme conditions, but I won't go into the specifics here. I use black Goretex darkcloths, which are waterproof just like a Goretex parka, but also breathable and lint-free. Keep you meter battery warm, inside a pocket. Or have a warm spare battery in a pocket. One frequent problem is having condensation from your breath fog up the groundglass. If really cold weather you might find a skiers knit "snorkel"-style facemask useful in this respect. Or maybe your breath won't freeze if it's pickled with something 100-proof anyway! Pick the right kind of gloves and general clothing. I like working out of a real backpack that has plenty of room for personal gear and not just camera things. Have a compendium lens hood to keep your lens dry. And although skis are nice to get around in, it is far easier to maneuver a camera with snowshoes instead, and to tamp down a snow platform so your tripod legs won't sink in. ... you can also attach little ski pole baskets to them. I like my Ries wooden tripods for snow. Bully mass helps. But some cheaper wood tripods will literally
    freeze shut. Otherwise I use carbon fiber tripods with a mesh bag below with rocks for weight. Spike rather than rubber feet are important if you want to grip
    icy surfaces.
    Great info Drew, if I had the money for Gore-Tex that would be awesome, but that stuff is expensive!

    I've been trying to afford Gore-Tex pants for the past five years! Lol, I do have a nice Gore-Tex jacket thankfully, but no pants yet...

    So far I settled on this...

    Click image for larger version. 

Name:	ImageUploadedByTapatalk1386702466.315221.jpg 
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ID:	106378

    I'm not so worried about the tripod, I've already done tons of hiking and backpacking in temperatures as low as -15, without a problem with either tripod that I use, it's just the camera I'm concerned about.

    Obviously if I were hiking far, I would not be bringing the pelican case, and would just be wrapping everything up in a backpack, but I'm just talking about normal shooting where you find a scene that you see on the side of the road, pullover park and hike out to the right position to get the shot. Just thinking about the snow falling not necessarily doing crazy hiking adventures just yet.

    By the way that is actually duveytine cloth, it's just red instead if black.

  7. #27

    Re: How do you deal with snow / inclement weather?

    Quote Originally Posted by Bruce Barlow View Post
    I have found that photographing in lousy weather usually doesn't yield worthwhile images, because the light is so flat. I wait until the sun comes out, and then usually only have to deal with the cold. Snow and ice in bright sunshine - now yer talkin'!
    Not in my experience, for me that is exactly the time to be out, it is when interesting light can occur too, the edges of things imparting stellar light.

    I have been out all week, heavy snow, light snow, temps of -17F to 5F. I simply use my Ebony dark cloth to shield the camera and lens once my composition has been nailed down, use a glove liner to brush off snow from the bellows, hold my breath while under the dark cloth, never a problem. Living in a ski resort, I work in cold and snowy weather for 5 months a year, it is nothing new to me. In the warmer weather with rain I will use my Gortex Mtn. Hardware hat to block the rain, it works pretty well for most lenses when not using a lot of bellows extension. Bottom line is for me that I avoid "One Trick Ponies" preferring to use an existing piece that serves another purpose rather than a dedicated goofball camera specific thing. As far as gloves go, I guess I am built for colder weather, can not stand the heat. If there is no wind, I am usually good for at least a few hours with no gloves on down to 0F if I put my hands in my pockets now and then.

    The hardest part is getting tripod legs stable in snow over 3 feet deep, they tend to flex so it is an act of bending them inward before placing them so that they splay out to where I need them once bottomed out. I have been thinking about designing a pair of "Snowshoes" for them so they pack the snow down more but I am always averse to carrying more crap when skiing with my 4x5.

    Attached is the Gortex hat in light rain doing double duty...

    Attachment 106384
    Last edited by Kodachrome25; 10-Dec-2013 at 13:59.

  8. #28
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    Re: How do you deal with snow / inclement weather?

    I don't normally shoot when it is snowing but some of the nicest light comes during the cold, short days of winter up here. I find once you get below -25 or -30 that is where you start to get the controls stiffening up and being difficult to operate, especially if they have any grease in them.

    Keeping hands warm is a huge challenge, I wear thin gloves underneath thick mittens that are attached to my wrists. So I can quickly "drop" and then put the mittens back on.

    Trying to compose while holding your breath so you don't fog the ground glass is also pretty annoying.

  9. #29
    adelorenzo's Avatar
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    Re: How do you deal with snow / inclement weather?

    Quote Originally Posted by Ari View Post
    I just try to make sure my fingers don't freeze when working in the cold; metal-on-skin can really cut into work time.
    I am still searching for that ideal pair of gloves that will allow me to keep my fingers toasty while performing the finesse movements required on a VC.
    Keep the loupe around your neck, light meter in one pocket, film holders (if they fit) in another pocket, and dress warmly.
    I use some locally-made fingerless dog musher gloves that have a pocket for a hand warmer. The other thing to look at would be biathlon gloves. Those guys need to be able to shoot in cold weather so those are pretty dexterous. I have a pair of Roeckls that are extremely warm and yet quite thin.

    Either way I have big mittens that I can pop my hands into at every opportunity to warm them up.

  10. #30
    Vaughn's Avatar
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    Re: How do you deal with snow / inclement weather?

    When carrying a small camera (4x5 or 5x7) on a tripod, I put a water-proof stuff sack (for backpacking sleeping bags, etc) over the camera and cinch it tight around the tripod. Keeps the camera dry and prevents branches, etc from snagging the camera bellows.

    While walking around photographing in cold weather (the coldest has been 18F...not too bad), I wear one wool mitten and keep the bare hand in the pocket of my wool pants. When composing, I use the bare hand to work the finer controls, and when that hand gets too cold, I switch the mitten over to it and work with the warmer hand.

    Vaughn

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