updated 03/2021

How to photograph when it’s raining, is a question I get asked a lot. Do you bring a rain jacket when you head off to play outdoors or go on an adventure? Of course. Do you stop fishing if it’s raining? Of course not! So, why would your photography and camera equipment require anything less?

So what do you do if you totally spaced bringing rain gear and it rains? With a little forethought, those potential oh sh*t moments when the skies turn grey won’t happen often and won’t keep you from shooting.

Mother Nature is unpredictable, and staying dry isn’t always feasible, sometimes you have no choice but to push it and shoot in the elements unprotected. But obviously, I like to keep my gear as dry as possible. Gear is expensive, so it’s worth it to own and carry some type of rain cover. The last thing you want to happen is something that was easily preventable ruin the rest of your work shoot or vacation.

When you apply the right equipment in the right environment, you’re able to shoot in any condition, from that moody light in the rain to the emotion of a torrential downpour. To capture those dramatic, raw, organic moments, you need to shoot when it’s happening – something you can’t do if your camera is stuck in the bag because of a little rain.

Below are general tools of the trade – the gear I use regularly and depend on. Everything will work with the most current popular camera brands and any level of ability.



Rain covers offer key components that help make on-the-go outdoor shooting easier and more efficient. The AquaTech and the Think Tank styles use an easy-to-use eyepiece system to keep things in place. I’ve found when dealing with sporadic use, putting the cover off and on (which means switching my eyepiece), I usually swap it out in the morning and leave it on if I think it might rain all day. There’s a small pocket for the eyepiece so you don’t lose it. Both of these designs also permit horizontal or vertical use and can be accessed by its left or right sleeves. Additionally, it’s easily used when your DSLR is mounted to your tripod or monopod. Both of these products have their niche place in our camera gear. There’s room under both of these for a Canon ST-E3-RT Speedlite Transmitter.

The everyday workhorse. I’ve used all of them. This one takes the best parts of them all and puts them into one. I use the medium size, as it gives me a range of use from short/wide-angle lenses all the way to the Canon 70-200 2.8L IS II. I also use it for my 100-400mm. It’s a tight squeeze, but it works, and for my weight needs it’s better than bringing two. This is a high-performance rain cover: it’s lightweight, compact, and fast to get on and off. Do note that the neck-straps are an after-market purchase: AquaTech quick clip camera strap.

This is my heavy lifting go-to rain cover; it’s a very dependable staple in my gear rack. A unique feature we like on the Think Tank is the end cap: it fits right over the end of the lens barrel, which is nice when you’re billy-goating over uneven ground in a wet rainforest and trying to protect the front element of your lens. This also has a camera strap built-in. This rain cover is a bit heavier and bulkier than that of the AquaTech but both have their niche place in my gear bag. When you need all the bells and whistles, this is it!

The “before” and “after” elements are often overlooked when thinking about shooting in the rain. The getting ready part and breaking down while in the field seem to slip right past even the sharpest of minds. Trying to keep your pack dry while putting your camera body and lens together and putting on a raincoat never really works that efficiently. If the rain stops for a minute, or maybe even an hour, do you take off the wet cover, put the camera away in the (hopefully) still dry pelican/backpack, and repeat the process another 20 times through the day? Or…?

If I know it’s going to be pouring all day, then I know that my camera will be going in and out of my backpack all day, making things drenched. So in this scenario, I put my camera in this handy little tool, and I keep it out all day ready to shoot – fully protected and fully submersible. It’s not the easiest to use at first, so it really pays to know where your camera dials and buttons are located (you should be able to use your camera in the pitch dark and know it by feel anyway, right?!).

It’s lightweight and takes up little room in the pack. It’s also a great option for when you need to travel with lighter camera bags because of weight or size restrictions. You can add a dome – and you can even shoot with this underwater. Yep, underwater. Kill two issues with one purchase.

The LensCoat RainCoat is a great affordable rain cover. It provides protection for your camera and lens from the elements like rain, snow, salt spray, dirt, sand, and dust while allowing easy access to the camera and lens controls. No bells and whistles, only what you need. The RainCoat Standard is designed for use with DSLRs with telephoto lenses up to 100-400/400mm f5.6. This is a great bang-for-your-buck piece of gear. It’s lightweight, waterproof, and breathable, and it has taped seams. The RainCoat is quick and easy to use, and the cinch strap allows you to adjust the length of the cover to keep it snug around your lens. It has a fold-out arm sleeve from its integrated pocket for access to the camera controls. You can use it with a tripod, and it doesn’t require an eyepiece. But there’s no camera neck strap.


The cheapest and lightest camera-cover option of the bunch is basic plastic. It works great in a pinch, and it’s very lightweight and easy to store. There’s no real way to use a neck strap without compromising the integrity of the material, so if that matters to you, then buyer beware. It’s durable to a point; in really rugged terrain it’s going to get beat up. But you can bring a few of them for the fraction of the price and the weight. For those really lightweight trips where every ounce is scrutinized, this is a great option.

That said, I suggest you look at these as more of a disposable piece of lightweight gear that is very niche-specific. It will and does work, but it’s not my go-to. BUT this IS something I always have in one of my bags — it’s a great accessory to always have on hand and as a back-up.


On more than a lot of occasions, I’ve used the trusty umbrella. Some might say it’s the standard rain gear photographers have used for decades (along with a jacket). It’s a great tool when operating a static camera. But in a run-and-gun style of outdoor action photography, it really isn’t that easy to use in a single shooter situation. It’s been done, but ideally, umbrellas are used when there’s an assistant available. And on some occasions, it’s been used as a giant camera cover between thundershowers.

A fellow photographer, Sean Kerrik Sullivan, showed me golf umbrellas. They’re sturdy, have a great surface area, and many have wind vents, which is key. They’re built well. So far, I haven’t had to buy another one.

I stick these handy little things in my pack and underwater carrying case to absorb any moisture that I might bring in. These also help prevent rust, mildew, mold, and foul odors. The manufacturer recommends one pack per three cubic feet of enclosed space. On the top face of the desiccant pack, there’s an orange indicator dot; this turns white when it absorbs moisture and lets you know it’s time to change. Maintenance is easy: simply heat an oven at 300°F and bake for at least three hours, or until the orange color returns to the silica beads. The gel will turn back to the orange color again when it’s ready to reuse.




Hotel Shower Caps + Electrical Tape + Rubber Bands + Car Trunk Umbrella w/ Polka Dots

If you open my backpack or pelican case, you’re bound to find a few shower caps crammed in there somewhere. (I learned this trick a long time ago from Jim Klug, who has extensive time behind the lens in off-the-beaten-path global locations.) Shower caps come in handy to outdoor photographers, so I can’t seem to leave a hotel room without taking them. They’ll work great in a jiffy, especially if you use a little electrical tape and rubber bands – just like that, a disposable rain cover.

These items also come in handy for video monitors and keeping other electronic gear dry when it’s wet out and production can’t wait.

<+> Tip <+>
Remove the eyepiece before you pull the plastic over the camera, then use the tape to seal the open ends of the shower cap to the glass of your camera (leaving the camera back open), and poke a hole for the lens. Use the rubber band to seal the plastic to the lens sunshade. Make sure you’re zoomed all the way out when you rig it up, that way it’ll flow when you work the zoom of the lens. There’s no right or wrong way to rig this, just about any MacGyver method that gets the job done will work great!


I’ve seen more meltdowns from having terrible lens cloths than anything combined from the smudge that can’t ever be un-smudged. To save on hair being pulled out, I use the Tiger Cloth. It picks up most very well. This is also an anti-static, microfiber cloth that’s specifically engineered for cleaning photographic films. The cloth has strips of effective conductive fibers built in the knit; this dissipates or drains off static charges. Yeah, it’s not cheap, but it’s only a couple bucks more than the other lens cloths that suck. NOTHING is more frustrating than trying to clean your expensive lens with a cheap lens cloth you bought to save a few bucks.

This amazing product is a staple in my bag, every day for every shoot. Most people use this to safely eliminate dust from sensitive or hard-to-reach surfaces. Another application for these air blasters is to blow water off the lens. Unless you have a pocket full of 10 lens cloth ready to go, the air blaster works fast and easy and keeps your lens cloths drier for a lot longer when working in wet conditions. This gem has a one-way valve on the bottom that brings in clean air and does not redistribute dust or water. A nice design feature is that the blaster stands up on its own and can be set on its side on a flat surface without rolling around, meaning it’s not going to roll off your cooler… as easy.



Photography tips for the traveling outdoor photographer. There are numerous ways to get the same thing accomplished. My working photo kits are designed for me — a single shooter, usually with no assistant, working in the outdoor elements with needs to be mobile and carry all of my own gear. Of course, we all have different needs, and what works for me might not work for you. After years of trial and error (mostly error), this is my current method to the madness. Enjoy!

We’d love to hear your experiences and ideas.
Tell us more in the comment section below!



Enjoy this info?! Learn these tips and much more at our hands-on
Yellow Dog Flyfishing Adventures travel and fishing photography workshops




Let’s face it, not every shoot goes smoothly. Gear breaks and stuff happens. This is why it’s really important for me to use tough dependable gear. I can’t afford gear failure, and I also can’t bring a giant tackle box to the middle of the backcountry to fix any unforeseen issues that may arise.

When I’m traveling by foot and space in my pack is limited, I can’t allow myself to drag behind and miss the shot because my pack is 80 pounds. The gear I bring is taken into substantial consideration because weight and space are a top priority.

There are a few gadgets that are always in my pack, regardless of the location. These are also items that are always being used often – aside from the usual photography kits of camera bodies, lenses, clothes, flash, tripod, etc.

This is a list of my top 5 non-photo gadgets found in my pack.



Benchmade: Griptilian
Buy a good one. Don’t skimp. Although for the most part it’s used as a utility knife for everything imaginable, you’ll still need to rely on a good blade, and the $15 dollar knife isn’t going to cut it. There isn’t a place I’ve traveled that I didn’t have my knife on my belt. And there isn’t a place that I haven’t needed it — even if it’s for spreading peanut butter and jelly. It’s way better than your finger, and your companions will thank you for it.

LifeStraw: Go Bottle
Water is heavy, and I don’t have room for eight bottles (and they’re not environmentally responsible). I could use a bladder, but if it breaks then water will cover my camera gear, and again, water is heavy. I could do what I did years ago and drink those awful tablets or attempt to lug around a purifier, but that’s unrealistic. But there is an easy solution. I am lucky that my job is on water. I carry a reusable water bottle that contains a purifier. It’s light, and I can refill at any time of the day. The LifeStraw keeps weight to a minimum and keeps me hydrated, and that allows me to keep my energy level high. The bonus is drinking the cold water of nature’s streams on a hot summer day. Warm bottled water anyone? No way!

LED Lenser: Seo7R Rechargeable
This is the most prized possession I carry. Being able to see in the dark is a big plus. Most of the time you never need it, but all too often I’ve found myself staying in a location until the light was gone, miles away from camp. Or I’m on the other side of the river catching the last of the sunset light. I’d never leave home without one, and in fact there is some type of lightweight headlamp in every one of my camera bags. My most used is the Led Lenser. There are many types and brands, but I suggest going with a reputable one and getting as many true lumens as possible. The more lumens the brighter the light, but brighter usually means heavier and bulkier the headlamp.

Gerber: MP600-Multi-Plier-Needle
Gear breaks and you need to be able to quickly rig it back to some type of working condition to finish the shoot. We can’t take a toolbox, but we can take a multi-tool! I thank my friend Jerry Daschofsky every time I use this wonderful gift he sent me, which is almost weekly. This gadget goes with me on every trip. And on every trip it comes in handy. I highly suggest that you get one that is tough and that can take a beating. Things might get a bit heavier, but when you need a tool, you don’t want it to bend or break. Then you’re really screwed. See what I did there?

Adventure Medical Kit: All sizes
I always travel with a medical kit. Usually, I have a large full medical kit at my base of operations with splints and sutures and a small personal kit on my person. The more I travel the more I realize how important this is. I’ve seen a stick through the leg (mine), deeply cut hands, a hatchet to the thigh, broken bones, and violent illnesses deep in the jungle. I’m also a member of Global Rescue.

RECAP: Top 5 Top 5 Non-Photo Gadgets

  1. Quality knife
  2. Bright rugged headlamp
  3. Purified water bottle
  4. Multi-tool
  5. First-aid kit

<+> Tip <+>
First Aid Kit + Moleskin + Medical Tape + Multi-tool = LAV Mic Solutions

So you’re doing audio and you need to hide a LAV mic — standard stuff with fishing filmmaking. Let’s say the clothing the subject is wearing rubs on the LAV mic, and it creates a horrendous sound, or maybe a clip broke and you need a mounting solution in the field. Whatever it is, some audio tinkering happens every time. Then it hits ya — you forgot your little MacGyver audio gear bag at the hotel/lodge/car/base camp/anywhere but there! Not to worry.

Get your first-aid kit out of your pack and grab the moleskin and medical tape (Transpore medical tape is a standard in every audio bag as gaffers tape causes allergic reactions in some), and with your trusty pocketknife or scissors on your multi-tool, cut the moleskin in small pieces. Use the moleskin as you would stickies or whatever audio dampener tricks you usually use. The felt side of the moleskin helps to isolate the clothing from the LAV mic. Just add the moleskin to the area you want to put the mic, tape the mic onto the moleskin, and then add moleskin over the mic area, basically sandwiching the mic while mounting it in place. Adjust as needed. Audio disaster adverted in a pinch thanks to the first-aid kit. Now don’t forget to restock the kit!

+ Effective LAV Mic techniques +


Photography tips for the traveling outdoor photographer. There are numerous ways to get the same thing accomplished. My working photo kits are designed for me — a single shooter, usually with no assistant, working in the outdoor elements with needs to be mobile and carry all of my own gear. Of course, we all have different needs, and what works for me might not work for you. After years of trial and error (mostly error) this is my current method to the madness. Enjoy!

We’d love to hear your experiences and ideas.
Tell us more in the comment section below!



Enjoy this info?! Learn these tips and much more at our hands-on
Yellow Dog Flyfishing Adventures travel and fishing photography workshops



How To Travel When You Need All Three

updated 03/2021

What’s the best camera bag for fly fishing photography? In my opinion, there isn’t one to rule them all. But there are a few ways to carry your camera gear depending on the situation, and there are some great pieces that make things easier to shoot all day on the water. However, with fly fishing photography there are many variables to factor in when carrying your camera gear that most other sports and styles of photography don’t deal with.

A professional camera pack works great. I can travel, fly, and shoot in the city, mountains, and snow with a single camera bag. The biggest hurdle with fly fishing photography is water. We are surrounded by water — a camera’s mortal enemy. We shoot on water, and we travel on water, but we also travel on foot and in boats and in rafts and on planes and in trucks, and on horses … you get the idea.

As a traveling adventure fly fishing photographer, I’m constantly dealing with different scenarios, environments, and transportation methods. It’s one thing if I’m in a drift boat all day — I use a Pelican. If I’m hiking or wade fishing small streams — I go with my favorite camera pack. What happens when you need to be mobile for both boat and wade shooting on the same day?! What if you have to travel on a plane to get there first? Well, by doing it wrong many times, I’m slowly narrowing down how to make it work.

There’s no right way, but there are ways to make it easier and more efficient to carry your camera gear and be prepared for any situation.

Packing for Air, Land, and Sea
Just for fun, I’m going to walk you through a general worst-case pack selection scenario: when you have to bring it all but you don’t need it all. For example, when I travel from my house in Montana to South America for trout fishing and shooting culture and cityscapes, I need to prepare to walk the city and shoot easily while keeping my gear safe and compact. Then it’s off to floating in rafts, drift boats, hiking trails, and wading in, through, and around deep swift water.

When traveling in numerous planes and different types of boats, a Pelican is an easy choice. It fits in the overhead compartment (don’t check your camera bodies and lenses if you don’t have to!) and is easy to work out of in a boat. From experience, I know that most of the time the camera gear gets tossed in the back of a pickup before we zoom 60 miles an hour down a bumpy dirt road. A Pelican case is a must-have for me here. BUT there are a few days where we have long approaches with a lot of gear. For this, it’s an easy choice: grab your trusty camera pack.

And then there will be a few days of all-day wading. I definitely need a waterproof pack and an easy way to change and store gear. It really sucks lugging your Pelican case on your shoulder all day, through the muck, and trying to shoot and hold your case while standing in the water trying to avoid saltwater crocodiles. The same can be said for your trusty comfortable camera pack: one wrong move and you’re in the drink, and you and all your gear are soaked and the shoot is over.

Packing Your Equipment for Travel and Field Use
If I’m really limited for space and weight but need the kitchen sink, I carry my gear onto the plane in my pack. I use an internal cube system so I can easily remove the cubed guts out of the pack shell. I check my underwater housing on the plane (this travels in a Pelican 1510 — same as my carry-on size). When I get to the location, I put my housing together, remove the padding of the Pelican and add my internal cube from my backpack. Now I’m ready for the boat.

But what if you need to use the boat to get to a wading spot or the salt flats? For this, I use a waterproof pack with separate padded units for the camera body and lens. I carry the longer versions of the Trekker, so I can have on my 70-200 or 100-400. I have two lens barrels and a Trekker: one with a wide-angle or fixed lens and a longer one for the zoom. I keep one of these empty for fast and easy lens changing. I’ve found you can get away with using a small and a large size case with a body, and this covers your three lenses and is easy to switch in the field while standing in the water. (If you haven’t practiced this cool juggle, I suggest you give the old college try at home a few times first.) When I pack this kit for airline travel I shove it all in itself, from big to small, like a game of Tetris, and use any available room to store loose end gear, such as a diffuser.

There are many uses for this kit. You now have a waterproof bag for when you’re in the boat. The Trekker can be used as you travel from location to location, keeping your camera with you and available at all times. It’s no good if your camera is stuffed away and hard to get to. Using the ICU blocks you can easily switch from camera pack to Pelican case. This system allows me to mix and match for any situation and environment while being streamlined and efficient when shooting in the field. Got all that? How about a little recap.

What Pack to Take?! Reference Chart
+ Walk wade / Day at the lake = Camera pack
+ Drift Boat, Skiff, Power Boat = Pelican 1510
+ Drift Boat / Skiff + wading = Pelican 1510 & Waterproof pack and padded case
+ Small stream hiking and fishing = Camera pack
+ Big river, lots of wading = Waterproof pack and padded case
+ Rainforest = Waterproof pack and padded case
+ Jungle = Waterproof pack and padded case
+ Kayak/Canoe = Watershed Chattooga w/ Padded Camera insert
+ Big Water Dori =Watershed Chattooga w/ Padded Camera insert

<+> Tip: Use your lens barrel holder as pouch <+> 
Are you tired of trying to find which pocket your lens cloth is in or where your rocket blower is? Most packs have the mole strap system these days; I use my smaller lens barrel on my hip belt to carry things I need constantly and at the ready. Save time and shoot more.




I’ve used most packs, bags, cases, and fake cases, and I’ve been known to wrap my gear in clothes. After years of use and abuse I’ve narrowed it down to these pieces of gear. (Of course there are many great brands out there that may also suit your needs.)

PELICAN 1510 with padded dividers
This case is my workhorse. There isn’t a shoot in the world where I wouldn’t go without it. It fits in the overhead, it’s tough and strong so it can be checked as luggage, and it has wheels and a handle for ease in the airport. I use the padded divider for a few reasons, namely to avoid issues with water. When you are working on water, if it is raining, or you are opening and closing your case often, there is nothing worse than needing to dry out your Pelican at the end of the day. Foam and water do not mix.

** This is a staple for all boat situations. It’s TSA and FAA approved for carry-on overhead storage.

I use a variety of F-Stop packs for both mountain and travel. This pack here has all the bells and whistles that you’d expect on a professional adventure pack. This goes with me everywhere. I use their “Internal Camera Units” (ICU). These ICU blocks work great with my system and style of shooting. The pack handles weight well. I’ve loaded this thing down with camera gear, tent, sleeping bag, etc. I’m sure it looked like a disaster, with stuff strapped to it, but it handled an overload of weight. It’s well made and built tough.


A tried and true top-of-the-line brand, and creator of great photography packs and padded travel gear. A great all-season and versatile pack, the Whistler BP 450 AW delivers amazing performance for wilderness photographers and adventurers.



From the salt flats to mountain streams, these packs have been with me around the globe and are still going strong: Patagonia Storm Front and Watershed Animas. I use the padded Trekker and lens barrels with this system, which allows me to keep my gear dry in the backpack and also have access to the camera. I can wear the Trekker on my hip or mount it to my chest connectors. This is my go-to system when wading in rivers, on the salt flats, and when I’m faced with pouring rain.


The Watershed Chattooga combined with the padded liner and divider set is a perfect combo when weight and lots of moving water is a factor. In big water, this is my go-to bag. The seal on this bag is one of the best I’ve seen. Class 5 whitewater? 15-foot seas? Not to worry, this bag locks down tight! Along with the seal, the compression strap design is superb, and with the padded insert, you have a streamlined watertight camera bag. Now you’re ready to send it off that waterfall.


I use the small, med, and large padded lens barrels with the Trekker chest. This system is used in conjunction with the Patagonia Stormfront pack and other Lowepro lens cases.


These come in handy more often than you think and can be used as a makeshift waterproof camera cover in a pinch. I always get a bigger size than needed, and I often use off-brand labels. Some covers are so tight that you can’t have a layer (or anything) strapped to the outside of your pack. A larger cover is more versatile, and if you ever end up hiking in the rain and shedding layers, you’ll be happy you have the extra room.

This gives you more room, organizational options, and allows for an easy uncluttered workflow. Less fumbling on a shoot means more time for shooting or fishing. I can also store items like cards, batteries, SAT phone, lens cloths, headlamps, bug net, insect repellent wipes, sanitary wet wipes, camera cords, and remote. You don’t want the little things floating around in your case. The Pelican 1519 Photographer’s Lid organizer is designed specifically for the Pelican 1510 case. It installs easily with the included screws for mounting the organizer to the lid.

If you have an ohhhh sh*t moment in the middle of nowhere, and there isn’t a convenient bag of rice standing by, this can help save your precious gear. It’s been my experience that if it’s in salt, you’re done by default, but if it’s in freshwater, you have a great chance of saving your gear. Those damn salt crystals and electronics just don’t get along. The standard rule applies: remove card and power. It slips into a pack and behind the padding in a Pelican case. It’s a no-brainer to have a BHEESTIE Bag on hand.

Are you tired of trying to find which pocket your lens cloth is in, or where your rocket blower is? Most packs have the mole strap system these days; I use my smaller lens barrel on my hip belt to carry things I need constantly and at the ready. Save time and shoot more.

NRS straps or other tie-downs can help keep your bag secured when in moving boats, whitewater, planes, bouncing truck beds, etc. I never leave home without a few in various sizes.


Photography tips for the traveling outdoor photographer. There are numerous ways to get the same thing accomplished. My working photo kits are designed for me — a single shooter, usually with no assistant, working in the outdoor elements with needs to be mobile and carry all of my own gear. Of course, we all have different needs, and what works for me might not work for you. After years of trial and error (mostly error) this is my current method to the madness. Enjoy!

We’d love to hear your experiences and ideas.
Tell us more in the comment section below!



Enjoy this info?! Learn these tips and much more at our hands-on
Yellow Dog Flyfishing Adventures travel and fishing photography workshops


Drake Magazine Interview | 6-Pack & Shooters

6-Pack & Shooters

I am very humbled to be interviewed by the great folks over at The Drake Magazine. A huge thank you for the continued support!

Per The Drake Magazine
“What’s it take to be a top shooter? An eye, for sure… and work ethic. Pro-photographer, longtime flyfisher, and stream-access freedom fighter Bryan Gregson takes us through the motions and shares more of his awesome fly fishing images.”

+ Interview Here:

Drake Magazine BG interview