By Jonathan Lawton
As a photographer, I have a love-hate relationship with my tripod. Don’t get me wrong, I enjoy tack sharp images and the enhanced depth of field capabilities a tripod provides, but I despise lugging it around out in the field. I couldn’t tell you how many shots I missed because I was too lazy to carry my tripod. Luckily, the people at Trek-Tech released a gadget that will make carrying a camera support in the field much easier.
The TrekPod II could be best described as a photographer’s multi-tool. It is a mix between a walking stick, monopod and a tripod. It is designed to support cameras, binoculars or any other device that has a one-quarter-inch threaded mount. The TrekPod II is made of two telescoping brushed aluminum columns, weighs 1 pound, 11 ounces and its height adjusts from 43 inches to 62 inches.
The TrekPod II has three legs built into its lower section that unfold into a freestanding tripod. The top of the TrekPod II features a small adjustable mini ball-head with a magnetic quick release plate for securing your camera to the stand. The quick release plate supports up to nine pounds. In my evaluation, the TrekPod II securely supported a 3-pound load that consisted of a Canon 70-300mm IS lens attached to 50D. With such a large load capacity, I can easily see the TrekPod II being able to handle the majority of consumer and professional SLRs with up to a medium telephoto lens.
The TrekPod II is a great solution for a photographer who seeks the creative possibilities a full-size tripod provides, but wants to avoid dealing with the weight and bulk often associated with the device. The TrekPod II comes shipped with a padded carrying case, the MagMount mini ball-head and two quick-release adapters with a safety clip.
Jonathan Lawton is a 2003 graduate from the Rochester Institute of Technology, where he studied photojournalism. He operates a photography business, specializing in wedding and portrait photography, www.jonathanlawton.com. Contact Lawton at firstname.lastname@example.org.