Denali - Talkeetna – Version 2Our trip to Alaska was fantastic. The weather ranged from blue skies to foggy rain but mostly was a not problem. Mosquitoes were mercifully nonexistent! We experienced great views of Denali, flew on float planes to see bears on Crescent Lake and helicoptered to top of the Knik Glacier. The only bust was a cruise of the Kenai Fjords that was cut short by rough seas – at least I didn’t get sea sick.

From a photography standpoint it was a great trip. I pretty much nailed my gear requirements, ending up using most everything I brought. Here’s what I ended up taking:

  • OMD EM-1 Mark 2
  • M. Zuiko Digital 40-150mm f2.8 PRO + 1.4x teleconverter – Great for wildlife photography (although I found myself wishing I had a longer lens get tighter on the bears)
  • M.Zuiko Digital ED 12-100mm f4.0 IS PRO Lens – Great all around travel lens. Not too big and very capable especially with the great stabilization.
  • M. Zuiko Digital 7-14mm f2.8 PRO – It’s Alaska, sometimes you need a wide angle lens!
  • I also brought my MeFOTO travel tripod and used it to shoot early morning Denali images, and brought my Manfroto monopod that I used for bear photography.
  • The camera and lenses fit neatly into my thinkTANK Mirrorless Mover 30i camera bag, which, in turn, was easy to stuff into my airline carry on bag and then carry with me when I reached Alaska.

The big experiment for this trip was bringing along the 500GB Western Digital My Passport Wireless SSD to back up all my images. It worked flawlessly for me. This unit has a built in SD card reader that allows you to easily insert the cards from you camera a the end of the day and have it transfer the new shots of the day onto the SSD. The unit has a battery so you don’t have to mess with plugging it in, just power it on an insert the card. Movies, raw files and JPEGS are all handled easily. When you get home just plug the unit into your computer and everything from you trip is available to load into Lightroom.

The big bonus for me with the My Passport was that you can wirelessly connect to an iPad and review your images and then transfer selected photos to your iPad to edit and share. This worked out amazingly well on our trip. I was able to find some nice shots to share with Melinda, our kids and other people on the trip. Very nice


I learned a couple things on this trip that I hope I can put to good use in the future.

First, I heed to take more pictures. The more you shoot the better yo get. I hear this all the mime and know that it’s true. Not sure why I had to prove it to myself AGAIN.

Second, video is different than still photography. Although I shot more video than I ever have before, most of it will just serve as a documentary of our visit. With video you need to have a story. With still photography an image can stand on its own.

Anyway it was a great trip and generally successful from a photography standpoint.