I used to carry around a Bogen 3021 tripod (5.75 lbs) with a 3030 head (2.3 lbs) I carried my gear in a Lowpro Mini trekker backpack (2.6 lbs), a Nikon D70 (1.5 lb) with a 80-200 F2.8 lens (2.9 lb), a 50mm 1.4 (0.6 lbs), a 500mm f8 (1.8lbs), a Tamron 24-70 f3.3-5.6 (.6 lbs) along with a SB-26 flash and an extension cord along with several filters for each and replacement batteries (2.5 lbs).
That comes to 20.55 lbs of gear when I headed out on an adventure. Usually I could convince my wife to carry the tripod, which brought my weight to 12.5 lbs and hers to 8.05 lbs, which is still more than I wanted to carry. The weight is probably why I stopped taking pictures with dedicated camera gear and started using my cell phone or a point and shoot, but there wasn’t enough camera resolution with the change to digital. And I was never happy with my shots.
But in the past few years, all that has changed. Lets explore how to avoid killing your back and instead kill your wallet, and have fun taking photos!