Cold Weather Photography Tips
Great gloves, hand warmers and preventing internal fogging to take great winter shots. Photo by Paul Raymaker.
There is still plenty of time to take out the winter gear—snowshoes, cross-country skis, winter jacket, snow pants and, of course, your camera. But before you head out, a few tips from photographer and Washington Trails magazine contributor Paul Raymaker can help take the chill out of capturing a winter wonderland-scape.
Choose the right gloves
While a pair of puffy, down-feather mittens may keep you warm on the mountain, they won’t be great for manipulating the buttons on your camera. Try a thin pair of running gloves or pipe gloves (a type of snowboarding glove) that you can use alone or as a glove liner. Some gloves, like OR’s Sensor gloves, have specialized material in the fingertips that lets you operate the touch screen of your camera or phone without taking them off.
Take extra hand warmers and batteries
Hand warmers might sound obvious for cold-weather hiking, but don’t forget to take an extra set along with an extra camera battery. Freezing temperatures will drastically reduce the life of your camera’s battery (as well as your smartphone or any other battery-powered device). Just activate the hand warmer and toss it in your pack with your gear to help keep your batteries warm—but be sure that it isn’t in direct contact with your electronics, to prevent overheating!
Beware of fog
After a long day of trudging through the snow, you and your camera gear will probably be pretty cold. When you get back indoors, hold off on immediately taking your camera out of your pack. If you do, the lens, viewfinder, LCD screen and the internals of your camera will fog up. This moisture can cause electronics to fail and fungus to grow in your lens. Needless to say, this is not good. Keeping the camera sealed in your bag for a few hours will allow the camera to warm up slowly, reducing the chance of internal fogging.