Saturday, September 1, 2012
The Dream Chaser
Michael Routh finds inspiration in the solitude of the less-explored backcountry
OP: What about camera equipment?
Routh: If I'm going light, I'll put a Canon EOS 5D Mark II body in a Lowepro Sling with a 16-35mm, a 70-200mm and maybe two other lenses and some ND filters. If I'm going heavy, I'll bring two bodies and add some prime lenses—the Canon 24mm and the 85mm. I carry in a big Really Right Stuff tripod with a big ballhead. As for safety and nature, I try and go in with multiple layers of clothing and also carry a GPS emergency-locator system. Ten miles in and you break an ankle and you're alone, you can have a real problem.
OP: So most of the time, you're doing these trips alone?
Routh: I would say 90 percent of the time, I'm on my own. I do take trips with colleagues, and I enjoy the great camaraderie among photographers. But I love the solitude of nature photography. I feel much more connected, not just to nature, but to everything. I've become much more spiritual because of photography. I don't want to sound too much like a Californian—actually, I grew up in Connecticut and spent 17 years in New Jersey, spending two or three days a week in New York City wearing a suit. I didn't do photography then. I did it in college, then as a businessperson, I got busy and gave it up.
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