I thought about heading out on Wednesday morning but the weatherman said “mostly cloudy” so I put off packing till the last minute. It dawned clear and sunny 🙁 My non-stop Southwest flight from San Diego to Orlando is scheduled to leave at 10:50am and arrive at MCO at 6:20pm where and when I will be met by my irreplaceable right-hand man Jim Litzenberg.
If you’ve dreamed about going to the Galapagos and would like to save some serious bucks on my August trip, please shoot me an e-mail. And see the details below.
Gear Questions and Advice
Too many folks attending BAA IPTs and dozens of folks whom I see in the field, and on BPN, are–out of ignorance–using the wrong gear, especially when it comes to tripods and more especially, tripod heads… Please know that I am always glad to answer your gear questions via e-mail.
The Streak: 433!
Today’s blog post marks a totally insane, irrational, illogical, preposterous, absurd, completely ridiculous, unfathomable, silly, incomprehensible, what’s wrong with this guy?, makes-no-sense, 433 days in a row with a new educational blog post. As always–and folks have been doing a really great for a long time now–please remember to use our B&H links for your major gear purchases. For best results use one of our many product-specific links; after clicking on one of those you can continue shopping with all subsequent purchases invisibly tracked to BAA. Your doing so is always greatly appreciated. Please remember: web orders only. And please remember also that if you are shopping for items that we carry in the BAA Online Store (as noted in red at the close of this post below) we would of course appreciate your business.
Selling Your Used Gear Through BIRDS AS ART
Selling your used (or like-new) photo gear through the BAA Blog or via a BAA Online Bulletin is a great idea. We charge only a 5% commission. One of the more popular used gear for sale sites charges a minimum of 20%. Plus assorted fees! Yikes. The minimum item price here is $500 (or less for a $25 fee). If you are interested please e-mail with the words Items for Sale Info Request cut and pasted into the Subject line :). Stuff that is priced fairly–I offer free pricing advice, usually sells in no time flat. In the past few months, we have sold just about everything in sight. Do know that prices on some items like the EOS-1D Mark IV, the old Canon 500mm, the EOS-7D, and the original 400mm IS DO lens have been dropping steadily. Even the prices on the new 600 II and the 200-400 with Internal Extender have been plummeting. You can see all current listings by clicking here or by clicking on the Used Photo Gear tab on the right side of the yellow-orange menu bar above.
Recent Successful Used Gear Sales
Note: I missed adding several items below while I was in South America for ten weeks with limited internet access. If your item has sold but is still listed on the Used gear page please let me know via e-mail.
- Multiple IPT-veteran Mike Goldhamer sold his Canon EF 400mm f/4 IS DO lens in excellent condition for the record low price of $2100 a while back.
- Dear friend and multiple IPT veteran Patrick Sparkman sold his Canon EOS 5DS R with the Canon battery grip in like-new condition for $2899 back in early November.
- IPT veteran Gerold Hanck sold his Canon 100-400 mm f/4.5-5.6 telephoto zoom lens, the “old 1-4,” in excellent condition for $549.
- Henry Raymundo sold both his Canon 500mm f/4L IS USM lens (the “old five”) in excellent condition for $3999 and a Canon EOS 7D camera body in excellent condition for $399 back in November, 2016.
- Ramona Boone sold here Canon EOS-1D X in excellent condition for the BAA record-low price of $2359 in mid December just days after it was listed.
- Richard Goldman sold his Canon EOS 5D Mark III in excellent condition for the BAA record-low price of $1399, his Canon 100-400mm L IS Zoom lens, the old 1-4, in excellent condition for the BAA record-low price of $529. And his Canon EOS 24-105mm f/4 L IS Zoom lens, the original model, in excellent condition, for the BAA record-low price of $519. All within days of them being listed in mid-December.
- William B Ellison, Jr.sold his a used Canon EOS 5D Mark III in near mint condition for the then BAA record-low price of $1497 in early December.
- Ron Ozuna sold his Canon EF 300mm f/2.8L IS USM lens in near-mint condition for $2699 in early December.
Canon EF 500 mm f/4L IS USM Lens–the “old five” with tons of extras!
Gene Scarborough is offering a Canon EF 500 mm f/4L IS USM super telephoto lens in excellent condition for $4299. The sale includes the lens, the Rear Lens Dust Cap E, the ET-138 Lens Hood, the lens trunk (never used), the lens strap, and the E-163 front lens cover, and tons of great extras: Canon Extender EF 1.4X II with the LP811 lens pouch and the original box, the Canon Extender EF 2X II with the LP811 lens pouch and the original box, the Wimberley P-40 lens plate with the BS-100 Brass Reducer Bushing, and a Canon Off-Camera Shoe Cord 2 in its original box. And insured ground shipping via a major courier (to US addresses only). The items will not ship until the check clears unless other arrangements are made. Payment by USPS money order or bank cashier’s check is preferred. Please contact Gene via e-mail or by text message or phone at 1-919 428 5495 (Eastern time).
The old five is a fairly lightweight super-telephoto lens that work well with both TCs. It is fast and sharp. I used mine as my workhorse lens (along with the old 600mm f/4) for almost ten years to photograph birds all over the world. Both have been replaced by their version II counterparts. The 500 f/4s have long been the world’s most popular super-telephotos for wildlife and sports. artie
Wimberley Sidekick & Wimberley F-6 Sidekick Flash Bracket
Gene Scarborough is offering a Wimberley Sidekick # SK-100 and a Wimberley F-6 Sidekick Flash Bracket, both in excellent condition, for $299. The sale includes insured ground shipping via a major courier (US addresses only). If paid by personal check, the items will not ship until the check clears, unless other arrangements are made. Payment by USPS money order or bank cashier’s check is preferred. Please contact Gene via e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org or by text message or phone at 919 428 5495 (Eastern time).
Please contact Gene via e-mail or by text message or phone at 1-919 428 5495 (Eastern time).
Folks who are using a short lens on a camera body one minute and a telephoto lens the next often do well with the Sidekick (ballhead required). artie
Nikon AF-S Nikkor 300mm f/2.8GII ED VR Lens Plus Extras!
Wayne Roth is offering a Nikkor AF-S 300mm f/2.8G EDII VR lens in like-new condition for $3,500.00. The sale includes the original box, case, hood, front and rear caps. Valuable extras: the Really Right Stuff lens plate and the Nikon 52mm Circular Polarizer (C-PL1L) Drop-In Glass Filter ($239 new). Also included is insured ground shipping (via UPS) to US addresses only. The item will not ship until your check clears unless other arrangements are made.
Please contact Wayne via e-mail or by phone at 1-440-476-4406 (Eastern time).
The 300 f/2.8 lenses have long been the first choice of the world’s best hawks in flight photographers and have become increasingly popular with bird photographers working either with crop factor cameras or those who live in areas with relatively tame birds. You can add the 1.4 or 2x teleconverter for even greater versatility. artie
Adjectives For This Photo Please …
Please feel free to brainstorm and post a comment with all the adjectives you can think of to describe the guy in today’s featured image. Phrases are fine too, as are your general comments.
Here’s what Gerold had to say about his photo of moi:
For me it typifies your attitude toward your work and your photography—energetically plunging in, full speed ahead, yet always thinking about how to get the best picture.
I will share my adjectives and thoughts after y’all have had a crack at it.
Focal length question. This image would have been stronger forseveral reasons if Gerold had zoomed out a bit and pointed his lens a bit to the right. Why would zooming out not have been possible in this case? How would the image been better if he had been able to make the changes that I suggested? (I see at least four major improvements …)
Big time thanks to Gerold for sending me today’s image and allowing me to share it with you here on the blog.
Please Remember to use my Affiliate Links and to Visit the New BAA Online Store 🙂
To show your appreciation for my continuing efforts here, we ask, as always, that you get in the habit of using my B&H affiliate links on the right side of the blog for all of your photo and electronics purchases. Please check the availability of all photographic accessories in the New BIRDS AS ART Online Store, especially the Mongoose M3.6 tripod head, Wimberley lens plates, Delkin flash cards and accessories, and LensCoat stuff.
As always, we sell only what I have used, have tested, and can depend on. We will not sell you junk. We know what you need to make creating great images easy and fun. And please remember that I am always glad to answer your gear questions via e-mail.
I would of course appreciate your using our B&H affiliate links for all of your major gear, video, and electronic purchases. For the photographic stuff mentioned in the paragraph above, and for everything else in the new store, we, meaning BAA, would of course greatly appreciate your business. Here is a huge thank you to the many who have been using our links on a regular basis and those who will be visiting the New BIRDS AS ART Online Store as well.
Tame birds and wildlife. Incredible diversity. You only live once…
GALAPAGOS Photo Cruise of a Lifetime IPT/The Complete Galapagos Photographic Experience. August 8-22, 2017 on the boat. 13 FULL and two half-days of photography: $12,499. Limit: 13 photographers plus the leader: yours truly. Openings: 4.
Same great trip; no price increase!
This trip needs nine to run; in the unlikely event that it does not, all payments to BAA will be refunded in full.
My two-week Galapagos Photo-Cruises are without equal. The world’s best guide, a killer itinerary, a great boat (the Samba), and two great leaders with ten Galapagos cruises under their belts. Pre-trip and pre-landing location-specific gear advice. In-the-field photo instruction and guidance. Jeez, I almost forgot: fine dining at sea!
The great spots that we will visit include Tower Island (including Prince Phillips Steps and Darwin Bay), Hood Island (including Punta Suarez, the world’s only nesting site of Waved Albatross, and Gardner Bay)—each of the preceding are world class wildlife photography designations that rank right up there with Antarctica, Africa, and Midway. We will also visit Fernandina, Puerto Ayora for the tortoises, Puerto Egas—James Bay, and North Seymour for nesting Blue-footed Boobies in most years, South Plaza for Land Iguanas, Floreana for Greater Flamingoes, and Urbina Bay, all spectacular in their own right. We visit every great spot on a single trip. Plus tons more. And there will be lots of opportunities to snorkel on sunny mid-days for those like me who wish to partake.
It is extremely likely that we will visit the incredible Darwin Bay and the equally incredible Hood Island, world home of Waved Albatross twice on our voyage. The National Park Service takes its sweet time in approving such schedule changes.
We will be the first boat on each island in the morning and the last boat to leave each island every afternoon. If we are blessed with overcast skies, we will often spend 5-6 hours at the best sites. And as noted above, mid-day snorkeling is an option on most sunny days depending on location and conditions. On the 2015 trip most snorkeled with a mega-pod of dolphins. I eased off the zodiac to find hundreds of dolphins swimming just below me. Note: some of the walks are a bit difficult but can be made by anyone if half way decent shape. Great images are possible on all landings with either a hand held 70-200mm lens and a 1.4X teleconverter or an 80- or 100-400. I sometimes bring a longer lens ashore depending on the landing. In 2017 I will be bring the Canon 400mm IS DO II lens. In the past I have brought either the 300mm f/2.8L IS II or the 200-400mm f/4 L IS with Internal Extender.
Do consider joining me for this once in a lifetime trip to the Galapagos archipelago. There simply is no finer Galapagos photography trip. Learn why above.
An Amazing Value…
Do know that there are one week Galapagos trips for $8500! Thus, our trip represents a tremendous value; why go all that way and miss half of the great photographic locations?
August 6, 2017: We arrive in Guayaquil, Ecuador a day early to ensure that we do not miss the boat in case of a travel delay.
August 7, 2017: There will be an introductory Galapagos Photography session and a hands on exposure session at our hotel.
August 8, 2017: We fly to the archipelago and board the Samba. Heck, on the 2015 trip some people made great images at the dock in Baltra while our luggage was being loaded!
August 22, 2017: We disembark late morning and fly back to Guayaquil midday; most will overnight there.
Most will fly home on the early morning of August 23 unless they are staying on or going elsewhere (or catching a red-eye flight on the evening of the 22nd).
$12,499 includes just about everything: all transfers, guide and park fees, all food on the boat, transfers and ground transportation, your flights to the archipelago, and three nights (double occupancy) in a top notch hotel in Guayaquil. If you are good to go, a non-refundable deposit of $5,000 per person is due immediately. The second payment of $4,000 is not due until 11/1/16. The final payment of $3449 per person will be due on 2/1/17. A $200 discount will be applied to each of the balances for couples or friends who register at the same time.
Purchasing travel insurance within 2 weeks of our cashing your deposit check is strongly recommended. On two fairly recent cruises a total of 5 folks were forced to cancel less than one week prior to the trip. My family and I use Travel Insurance Services and strongly recommend that you do the same.
Not included: your round trip airfare from your home to and from Guayaquil, beverages on the boat, phone calls, your meals in Guayaquil, personal items, and a $600/person cash tip for the crew and the guide—this works out to roughly $40/day to be shared by the 7 folks who will be waiting on us hand and foot every day for two weeks. The service is so wonderful that many folks choose to tip extra.
Please e-mail for the tentative itinerary or with questions. Please cut and paste “Galapagos 2017 Tentative Itinerary Please” into
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In all blog posts and Bulletins, feel free to e-mail or to leave a comment regarding any typos or errors. Just be right :).