What to Pack for a Photography Trip to Yellowstone National Park

What to Pack for a Photography Trip

If you are an avid photographer then a trip to Yellowstone and the Grand Tetons is a trip of a lifetime. What do you pack, what do you take? How are you going to get all the photos that you see in the glossy magazines and coffee table books?

Learn what photography supplies are necessary on vacation and which are just nice to have.

Photography in Yellowstone

What to Pack for a Photography Trip

The one mistake we made, in hind sight, was NOT planning for enough time. I had no idea that Yellowstone was so big! This was a last minute vacation and I had three days to plan 10 day vacation over the 4th of July Holidays.

Get to the park early, that means before 8am, be prepared for a LOT of people, traffic, and cars. Be prepared to take your time and and take at least a week in the park. We tried to see too much in too little time. But now I know what NOT to do.

Photography Equipment for taking Summer Photographs

Summer Photography in the National Parks

I’m heading to the Grand Tetons in July, NOT the best time for photography when the sun is at it’s strongest and tourist are heavy. So two things will be important. Finding the off the beaten path spots and figuring out a way to reduce the suns glare.

Complete Pro Square Filter Bundle Compatible with Cokin P Series for DSLR CamerasComplete Pro Square Filter Bundle Compatible with Cokin P Series for DSLR Cameras77MM Altura Photo Neutral Density Professional Photography Filter Set (ND2 ND4 ND8) + Premium MagicFiber Microfiber Cleaning Cloth77MM Altura Photo Neutral Density Professional Photography Filter Set (ND2 ND4 ND8) + Premium MagicFiber Microfiber Cleaning Cloth

Bright sunny skies will either blow out your skies when you expose for foregrounds or darken your subject matter when exposing for those gorgeous blue skies. You don’t have to comprimise. Use a gradient neutral density filter to adjust the exposure of the sky and get a perfectly balanced photo.

I purchased the Conklin camera lenses and experimented with them all week. The great thing about the square glass is they fit any size camera lens if you have a large photography kit.

Backpack Photography in Yellowstone National Park

The Ideal Camera Backpack

Hiking to the best photographic spots in a sate or national park is best done hands free and not spent carrying your tripod in your hands. Trust me I hiked to a couple of waterfalls in Connecticut with my slingbag and carrying my tripod. Never again.

Invest in a good camera backpack, one with a waist strap and easy access to your equipment

Even better is one with a pocket for a water bottle and a strap to hold your tripod. Even with the steadiest of hands your sharpest and clearest photographs will be with using a tripod with a remote shutter.

Lowepro Flipside 400 Aw Digital SLR Camera Photo Bag Backpacks 100% Genuine,come with ALL Weather Cover Free ShippingLowepro Flipside 400 Aw Digital SLR Camera Photo Bag Backpacks 100% Genuine,come with ALL Weather Cover Free ShippingLowepro Photo Sport BP 300 AW II Waterproof Photo Backpack (Blue) + Accessory Bundle For Canon, Nikon, Sony, Olympus, Pentax Digital SLR CamerasLowepro Photo Sport BP 300 AW II Waterproof Photo Backpack (Blue) + Accessory Bundle For Canon, Nikon, Sony, Olympus, Pentax Digital SLR CamerasLowepro Flipside 300 DSLR Camera BackpackLowepro Flipside 300 DSLR Camera BackpackLowepro Flipside 200 Backpack (Arctic Blue)Lowepro Flipside 200 Backpack (Arctic Blue)Lowepro Flipside 200 Backpack (Red)Lowepro Flipside 200 Backpack (Red)New Lowepro Mini Trekker Aw Photo Dslr Camera Bag Digital SLR Backpack with All Weather CoverNew Lowepro Mini Trekker Aw Photo Dslr Camera Bag Digital SLR Backpack with All Weather Cover

Get Photography Advice from the Experts

Photography Guides for the National Parks

Unless you are a professional photographer a photography guidebook to Yellowstone or the Tetons is invaluable. You will learn where the best overlooks are for sunrises and sunsets over the lakes, where the photographers hang out, and even some “secret” locations.

But really, if they are published in a guidebook are they going to be a secret anymore. Some shots are best used with filters and these photography books give great instructions on shooting on manual, tips on long exposures and examples of what filters to use for certain effects.

If anything they serve for inspiration and they will SAVE time.

Photographer's Guide to Yellowstone & the TetonsPhotographer’s Guide to Yellowstone & the TetonsPhotographing Yellowstone National Park: Where to Find Perfect Shots and How to Take Them (The Photographer's Guide)Photographing Yellowstone National Park: Where to Find Perfect Shots and How to Take Them (The Photographer’s Guide)

Geyser Pools at Yellowstone

My favorite Photographic Subject at Yellowstone

The geyser pools at Yellowstone National Park are a photographers dream. The colors of the boiling water, the steam and the bacterial pads are always changing and a work of art. I couldn’t get enough of the geological formations and landscapes.

Camera Tripods for Landscape Photography

Use a Tripod for Professional Photographs

Tripods allow the photographer to get the sharpest photographs and are an essential tool for long exposure photography when shooting waterfalls and night shots.

I have used a variety of tripods over the years and although heavier is better when it comes to wind and the potential for camera shake it is NOT the best when you are hiking. My camera backpack comes with a tripod adapter and is fantastic, but the added three pounds can definitely be felt after a few miles.

If you are hiking or transporting your tripod a short distance go for the highest quality you can afford.

ZOMEI Q111 Portable Pro 55-inch Tripod Compact Lightweight Camera Stand with Quick Release Pan Head Plate for Digital SLR Canon EOS Nikon Sony Panasonic Samsung(Blue)ZOMEI Q111 Portable Pro 55-inch Tripod Compact Lightweight Camera Stand with Quick Release Pan Head Plate for Digital SLR Canon EOS Nikon Sony Panasonic Samsung(Blue)Joby GorillaPod SLR Zoom Tripod with Ball Head Bundle for DSLR and Mirrorless CamerasJoby GorillaPod SLR Zoom Tripod with Ball Head Bundle for DSLR and Mirrorless CamerasManfrotto MT190CXPRO3 3 Section Carbon Fiber Tripod Kit with MHXPRO-3WG XPRO Geared Head with Two Replacement Quick Release Plates for the RC2 Rapid Connect AdapterManfrotto MT190CXPRO3 3 Section Carbon Fiber Tripod Kit with MHXPRO-3WG XPRO Geared Head with Two Replacement Quick Release Plates for the RC2 Rapid Connect Adapter6060″ Camera Tripod with bag

Don’t forget your remote shutter release. Even the slight push of the shutter on your camera can cause a camera shift and blurriness.

VILTORX JY-120-C1 wireless remote shutter release for Canon EOS camera 70D 60Da 60D T6s T6i T5i T3iVILTORX JY-120-C1 wireless remote shutter release for Canon EOS camera 70D 60Da 60D T6s T6i T5i T3iPixel RW-221 DC2 Wireless Remote Shutter Release for Nikon D3100, D3200, D3300, D5000, D5100, D5200, D5300, D5500,Pixel RW-221 DC2 Wireless Remote Shutter Release for Nikon D3100, D3200, D3300, D5000, D5100, D5200, D5300, D5500,Progo Wired Remote Shutter Release Control RS-60E3 Replacement For Canon Rebel T6i, T6S, T5 T5i T4i T3iProgo Wired Remote Shutter Release Control RS-60E3 Replacement For Canon Rebel T6i, T6S, T5 T5i T4i T3i

Non Camera Gear for a Photography Trip

What NOT for Forget on a Photography Trip

Here is what you will need if you venture out to Yellowstone, or any National Park during the summer. Trust me on this one, they are essential, and you will find yourself wanting them by the end of the day.

Merrell Women's Siren Sport 2 Hiking Shoe,Black/Pink,8 M USMerrell Women’s Siren Sport 2 Hiking Shoe,Black/Pink,8 M USBeyond Coastal Active Lip SPF 15 Balm with Chap Wrap (.15-Ounce)Beyond Coastal Active Lip SPF 15 Balm with Chap Wrap (.15-Ounce)Bull Frog Mosquito Coast Spray Sunscreen with Insect Repellent, 6 OunceBull Frog Mosquito Coast Spray Sunscreen with Insect Repellent, 6 OunceCarabiner Water Bottle Holder Clip Camping Hiking Outdoor Travel Buckle AluminumCarabiner Water Bottle Holder Clip Camping Hiking Outdoor Travel Buckle AluminumAdams Extreme Outdoor Cap - KhakiAdams Extreme Outdoor Cap – KhakiPolarized DVR Video Camcorder Sunglasses for Hikers and Climbers , Electronics & computerPolarized DVR Video Camcorder Sunglasses for Hikers and Climbers , Electronics & computer

Ok, maybe the DVR sunglasses are necessary, but regular UV Sunglasses are a must. I just thought for less than $50 any photographer who blogs these DVR video glasses are way cool and I wish I knew about them before I left. Next time.

So have a wonderful trip and don’t forget to order from Amazon before you leave. If you click on any of the products above it will help me earn a little cash so I can print off the hundreds of photos I took while on my vacation.

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2 Comments

  1. Gypzeerose

    There are so many of the National Parks that I have not had the chance to experience, Yellowstone is one of them! I love your personal tour, and information on how to pack for a photography trip. I have always thought of myself as a bad photographer, but I have become more interested in it recently (and read my horoscope which said that I should be good at it LOL) and I have been trying again. I have a son who is at professional level and he inspires me as well. He would have me going around all over the place taking pictures (dumps, etc.) – Yellowstone would be more fun!

  2. Brings back memories as a child at Yellowstone. Nice products too.

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