New Aviation Setup

In Aviationby Patrick

For years, I have been using a Mountainsmith Sling Bag as my primary way to hold extra lenses and gear while at an airshow. This has worked fairly well for me over the years, but one of the limitations is that it can only carry so much gear. Having said that, let me backup a bit and explain what I bring. This list is just what works for my style of photography and certainly there are many ways to do this. This is my ground to air and statics package.

That’s it! That is what I take to the airshows when I go. I have used all the lenses at one point or another and you just never know when you are going to need a given lens. Now, everything except the Nikon 200-400VRII and the ground pod fits is the sling bag. There are straps for securing the ground pod on the sling bag, so technically, the only thing that I am carrying on the Black Rapid strap is the 200-400 VRII. This has worked great for the most part, but I was always concerned that the 200-400 would take a hit or get marred or dinged in some way. Another factor into me trying a different setup is I am doing more video and that requires more gear and the sling bag was just not the right size anymore. As things evolve, you try different things.

That is exactly what I did this year for the first time in a long time. I decided to test the MP3 V2 Photopack instead. Here is what I found. One thing that I liked right out of the gate with the MP3 V2 is that carrying the ground pod was easier and I could keep my long lens in the pack until the airshow started. I was always nervous the other way carrying it out that it would take a hit and with the new photopack it is tucked away safe and sound until I need it. This is the MP3-V2 fully packed with the following gear:

iPhone X photo

Pros and cons. Pros are that I can carry all the gear that is essential with me, the bag is made to withstand the elements being waterproof, carries and protects my longest lens, has rain cover and can carry a tripod if need be and he compartment flaps all flip close on their own to keep dust and debris off the gear. Cons versus the sling bag is just the weight. The sling bag weighed in at about 10 pounds when fully packed, the MP3-V2 with the above gear is about 25 pounds so a bit over double the weight. Even with that, this carries like a back pack. Shoulder straps are comfortable and there is a waist belt to help defer the load.

Airshow this weekend. I will report back with how it went. “Keep em flying”

Share this Post