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Thread: Mt K photography advice

  1. #1

    Default Mt K photography advice


    I'll be making a trip to Mt K in Sabah in april. I need some advice on taking photographs at Mt K. what i've gathered so far is that i was advice to travel as light as possible and try not to take heavy tripod unless necessary. this is because Mt K is quite steep and the extra weight will be a burden but my aim is to take the sunrise and sunset and what ever flora and/or funa i can find. wildlife included.

    what i need is advice/suggestion from people who have been to Mt K on what equips would be necessary and what can be left without regret. my camera is the fuji s3 pro which in itself weights quite a fair bit... so i need to be smart and prudent about what accessories to carry.


  2. #2

    Default Re: Mt K photography advice

    if you really want to bring a tripod find a light one. but then again it'll be too unstable what with the strong winds at the summit. maybe u can lose the tripod and find some rock to rest the camera instead. as for lens, assuming you want to carry your valuables up (not leaving in hotel safe), something like 18-70 can ord. don't need be kiasu bring 3-4 lenses. or you will feel the wait. accessories just lens cleaning kit, cable release/remote and maybe a CP will do.

    hope this helps.

  3. #3

    Default Re: Mt K photography advice

    I also think a single wide to mid-telephoto lens will do the trick. Perhaps also bring along a macro lens for the flora and fauna. For stability, if you want to, you can invest in the gorilla-pod for DSLR. With that, maybe (just maybe) you can leave the tripod behind, there will be enough trees for the gorilla pod to cling onto.

    And always remember to 'water-proof' your equipment, and keep yourself warm from the cold mountains during the night.
    Pictures always should have a special story behind it or a special meaning to the photographer.

  4. #4

    Default Re: Mt K photography advice

    Thanks guys for your valuable advice. one more thing, this may not be the right forum to be asking this but since experience also is key in what i'm about to asked. i was told that half way up Mt K, most ppl almost certainly will experience altitude sickness. has anyone who have been there ever experience it? how to prevent it?

    BTW, i'm thinking of bringing my tokina 12-24 and nikon 70-300 is it enough? i don't really have many lens... probably will get a macro one.

  5. #5

    Default Re: Mt K photography advice

    don't bother about the 70-300. if it's just up and down mt. k, and maybe the hot spring, i say you'll use it 5% of the time or less. but its your call. =) is it worth carrying the wait to you. 12-24 good, maybe add a 60mm if uu really want to take macro, if not take a 50mm can ord.

    altitude sickness, you won't know until u get up. =) there are some pills you can take i think. google it.

  6. #6

    Default Re: Mt K photography advice

    Thanks skopio. think i have an idea of what is needed now. thanks again for all the advice and suggestion.

  7. #7

    Default Re: Mt K photography advice

    BTW, i'm also looking to get a new macro lens. any recommendation? my budget is not very big though... looking for something less than 500 if possible or else max 800. perhaps one that works well with DSLR. Thanks.

  8. #8
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Mar 2004
    Central West

    Default Re: Mt K photography advice

    Climbed Mt Kinabalu in 2004. You would want to keep it as light as possible - don't bother bringing the tripod (you'll end up cursing it's weight all the way up the mountain and it can get very windy up at the top so it won't be so stable anyway, especially if you take a light tripod). Just put your cam on top of the rocks (you can use a cloth or something to cushion the cam). Think you can just go with a wide-to-midrange zoom up the climb (I used an 18-70 and found it more than adequate). For a good and cheap (and light) macro, can recommend the tamron 90mm.

  9. #9

    Default Re: Mt K photography advice

    You can consider the sandbag tripod thingy, "ThePod", or get one of those tripods that you can tie to a tree, whihc i can'r rem the name..
    Last edited by GavinTing; 26th February 2008 at 11:00 PM. Reason: typo error sandback>sandbag

  10. #10

    Default Re: Mt K photography advice

    You may get porter service if you want to take more equiptment, u know lah, kiasuism! The last time i was there, the rate was RM8/kilo. So for the whole trip is around RM80 for the porter. Take note, they do not follow you to the summit. Anyway you will leave most the stuff in your cabin when you go for summit trail.

    I think more importantly you should get a heated room at Raban Rata Resthouse. The rest not heated and the chill can be hard to bare!

  11. #11

    Default Re: Mt K photography advice

    was informed that can hire a porter but since the porter will not follow to the summit, there really is no point. Anyway, based on what was mentioned here, i've a pretty good idea what to carry and what not to.

    As for the macro lens, what is the price like for the tamron 90mm now?

  12. #12

    Default Re: Mt K photography advice

    Quote Originally Posted by snappez View Post
    As for the macro lens, what is the price like for the tamron 90mm now?
    below $600 i guess. can check the price list in the relevant forum. actually if u going for short trip, just to climb i think you won't have energy to look for macro subjects. =) anyway, all the best for your trip!

  13. #13
    Join Date
    Jul 2007
    Singapore, Singapore

    Default Re: Mt K photography advice

    maybe can consider monopod if you dun want to lug a tripod around?.. it can serve as a walking stick as well (something that proved very useful from my experience some time back)..

  14. #14
    Join Date
    Sep 2005
    New York, Singapore

    Default Re: Mt K photography advice

    i've been to Mt K twice, the 2nd time with Special Olympics athletes...very fun!

    anyways, for camera and lenses, go light. 1 or 2 lenses will be sufficient. probly a UWA will be good for the scenery. personally i would get a WA lens, and maybe a 50mm and that's it. not much of a macro person myself. plus if you stop and set up for macro shots, it really takes the momentum out of your climb and you may get cramps from the cold.

    i don't think a tripod is really necessary. a monopod is about as far as i would go. otherwise, look for trekking poles that have removable heads that you can sub with a ballhead to use as a monopod. try lekki, but they're pretty pricey. also, make sure you have at least 1 if not 2 trekking poles to aid you in the takes a significant amount of strain of your knees. the first time i came down my knees were aching like crazy. had to grit my teeth and force myself to keep coming down.

    for AMS, it's almost unavoidable because you gain 3000m in 12 hours! fit people get it, fat people get it as well. just keep yourself well hydrated and you should be fine. some panadol (or other suitable medication in case of allergies) to help ease the headaches will be good.

    like what the others said, paying abit more for the heated guest house is well worth the money. i stayed at the unheated ones on my first trip and we were perched on the cliff side! plus the rooms were really bare and walls are very thin so you cant get much rest if the people outside are noisy.

    feel free to PM me if you need any help!
    Kodak film disposable camera

  15. #15

    Default Re: Mt K photography advice

    i have been twice on Mount K and so far did not suffer from altitude sickness, though one of my friends did (and did not make it to the summit). maybe my swiss blood helps....

    the basic rules for successful climb are as follows:

    > start early morning
    > walk in a steady slow pace for 50min and then take a rest for 10min. By slow i mean really slow, dont try to walk as quickly as you do in town, the path is big and easy to walk but it is very steep and air is thinn after a while.
    > hydrate frequently
    > eat small snacks during the rests, the snacks should be salty (to replenish the minerals you lost by sweating) and also sweet ones (to give you energy)
    > eat in the days before lots of bananas and magnesium, this will reduce the risk of cramps on the way down

    as for carry, well you need to know how much you can carry, i have carried a backpack with cameras, food, drink, spare clothes etc up there and was fine, others carried nothing and had a hard time (maybe they walked too fast).

    On the way up you will not have much opportunity to take macros, it is more where you spend the night were you can go venture a bit. a good wideangle is important, tele no need
    Never forget rule 5
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