I’m really excited to have a guest post today. Jason Shreder is the owner of Montana's Zoo Town Surfers and sent us in this waterproof camera round-up for 2013.
One of the best things about spending lots of time on the river is the people you meet, places you go, and all of the memories in between. Many times, it’s hard to translate how you feel or what you see through the lens of a camera, but it's sure worth trying. There are many different reasons to take photos on river trips, and I will leave that topic for you to decide.
Nowadays, there are many options for point and shoot cameras that are waterproof, dustproof, and shock resistant. Trying to find the camera that’s best for you can be frustrating, even with the big ole’ World Wide Web. Over the past ten years, I’ve tried almost every model that’s been out. Below, I’m recommending my top 5.
The Panasonic Lumix DMC-TS4 is the best waterproof camera on the market today. Nice design, quick shutter speed, and a nice zoom make this camera a deal. With an underwater depth of 40’, ruining this camera is going to be hard. Although this camera doesn’t have as many megapixels as the others (12.1), the photos will still look good if you want to print some larger photos.
The Sony Cyber-Shot DSC-TX20 is a great all around camera as well. It’s a couple ounces lighter than the Panasonic (for all you minimalists), and has a couple more megapixels as well (16.2). The Sony only has an underwater depth of 16’, which is somewhat of disappointment. The camera is a bit more expensive, starting around $250.
I have a long relationship with Olympus cameras. When I first started boating, the Olympus Stylus Tough TG320 was one of the first waterproof cameras on the market. Well, the other folks finally caught up. This tuff camera has a better zoom than the others but doesn’t have the best shutter speed and battery life I need when taking action photos. For a $100, you can’t go wrong.
Some folks buy Canon, some buy Nikon. The Nikon CoolPix AW100 is similar to the Sony and is priced about the same as well. I have never liked the buttons on the Nikons, especially when wearing neoprene gloves. I like a camera that has a nice grip, and this one could certainly slip out of your hands.
The Kodak Easyshare Sport doesn't have the bells and whistles that the other cameras have, but if your looking for a cheap, simple, easy to use camera, this is it. This small and compact camera is great for kids to use on the river. Less than $100, you’ll be less upset if this camera disappears into the depths of the river.
For the record, I'm a professional river guide, not a photographer, so hopefully this helps. Floating down the river is one of the best ways to see the world, spend time with family/friends, and create memories of a lifetime. Make sure you try and capture some of those moments, so you can look back, share, and relive those awesome memories.
Jason is owner/operator of Montana's Zoo Town Surfers, a Missoula-based outfitter specializing in kayaking trips and lessons, scenic and whitewater rafting, stand-up paddleboard trips and rentals, and American Canoe Association kayaking instructor training
These raft guides clearly know where the river photographer is...
Got a quick joke for you:
Q: What's a raft guide without a girlfriend?
This is why you don’t want to be on the water while a thunderstorm is rolling through.
Below is a sequence of three, 30-second exposure photos taken over a course of three minutes during a thunderstorm in
Pay close attention to the time stamps below. In the first photo, notice the police boat (the blue line on the water) moving on the water.
In photo two they make the decision to turn around and go back.
Flip to photo three and see what happened to the storm only two minutes later.
Probably the best decision the captain of that boat ever made.
Trying to decide where to go camping can be a tough decision...
Image credit: imgur.com
Here were the judge’s comments:
Wilderness to me is about wide open spaces and our sense of scale in relation to that space. This image captures that wonderfully, you feel in awe of what the rower is doing and also slightly afraid for him as he looks so small against the menacing water.
This photo is of my kayaking buddy, Erik Ogaard on
For the camera nerds out there, the photo was taken with my trusty Canon Rebel Xti and shot using the Aquapac SLR submersible bag. For me, the waterproof bag one of the key pieces of gear for shooting on the water and it’s always with me. The original purchase was the deal I made with my wife so I could take it paddling!
Here is the full list of winners on Facebook.
I’m pretty sure this is what happens every September once all the people drives back to the big city at summers end.
Photo credit: imgur.com
Two quick camping tips:
If you are planning on going camping this weekend only to discover there is a fire ban, remember that some areas are even worse so don’t get too upset. Also, don’t piss off your camping neighbour next door and they might do you a favour when the rangers come by.
Take a look at this crazy photo (shot by Andy Barrow) that my friend, Liz Burnside found while searching through Flickr for
She sent it my way and I did a double take when I realized that was a photo of me out paddling during a winter storm last January. I’m not sure where my friends Erik and Rob are but quite likely right in the middle of that mess. Click on the image above for zoomed in version of it.
For those who might be interested, I was testing out a new
This photo was taken here right up against the north wall of the Island airport in the Western Gap of Toronto.
Here is also a collection of photos that I took that cold day in January. My photos are not near as big looking as I was way too scared at the time to reach for my camera.
Top Photo credit: Andy Barrow
I know times have been tough on banks and they have branching out their marking to niche audiences but I think this is taking it a step to far.
I’m not sure if I should be insulted or not that they decided to put pillars around the ATM. How much damage can kayaks really do? Come on!
Photo credit: wins.failblog.org
These tubers from 1953 were all members of the Seattle Tubing Society.
Clearly they knew how to have a good time and look stylish even on the water. I love the guy with the top hat way in the back.
From the 3.2 minutes of research I did on this photo it's the Sammamish Slough floating down to Lake Washington in Seattle.
Professional photographer, Burt Glinn (who died in 2008) shot the photo along with several others here.
Photo credit: burtglinn.com