waiting behind your tripod

Discussion in 'Nature' started by mike_rott, Jul 21, 1997.

  1. When doing nature photography one often spends a great deal of time behind a tripod alert but waiting for something to happen. Either the wind to stop for the sec or two to get that macro shot or for that animal to get into the position you want, etc. With the tripod down low, crouching and squatting can get uncomfortable after a while. Having broken my foot a couple weeks ago I am finding this more uncomfortable than usual and can't stop from fidgeting around. Sitting on the ground doesn't work as often the tripod/camera is too high to see through. How do others cope under these conditions?
  2. L.L. Rue and other suppliers offer lightweight folding chairs in their catalogues, some even in camouflage livery. Sitting on these and adjusting the height of your tripod should be able to solve your problem. Since you seem to live in Germany, try Isarfoto in Munich.
  3. Some sort of folding chair/stool would seem to be the solution (or lower your tripod so you can sit!). I think I have even seen a camera bag wich had a built in folding chair/stool. It was some years ago in an old issue of Popular Photography and I don't remember the manufacturer. It was claimed it was strong enough so that you could even stand on it to get more height to shoot over tall bushes or crowds! I've never seen one though and I haven't heard anything about it recently.
  4. I sit or kneel with the tripod legs adjusted so that the camera is lower to the ground. This has the added benefit of making the tripod/camera more stable.
  5. I usually sit on the ground, ala Duane, though I've been known to bring the tripod all the way down and lie on the ground. When trying to get close to something, I'll often move forward on my knees, moving the tripod a couple of feet closer, waiting a moment, then following, repeating these steps until I'm where I want to be.


    Neither of these is attractive in mucky conditions, so I also carry a small camp stool I bought for $5 from REI. I never crouch or squat except for very brief periods.
  6. The wait might not be as long if you minimize your scent. See www.up-
    close.com for products that get rid of human odors.
  7. For macros and landscapes while I'm waiting for the light to change, I don't spend all my time peering through the viewfinder. If I've already locked down the composition, and I'm waiting for a pause between the breezes with a remote release, I just eyeball the situation from a standing position. If you're waiting for an animal you're going to be sitting in a blind (right?) and then you can probably bring a chair with you as others have suggested.
  8. Try getting one of those padded "L" shaped chairs that sit directly
    on the ground without any legs. They usually have a couple of straps
    that hold the back of the "chair" at a 90 degree angle to the seat.
    They are small, lighweight and let you sit directly on the ground.


    Don, I didn't know that REI sold any camping equipment for only $5.
    Was this a second-hand REI store?

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