Heading to Richmond in Yorkshire on Saturday morning to photograph a parade of the Royal Irish Rangers Association, who have ties with this area since their formation here some 40 years ago I knew the weather was going to be bad – the local radio was saying scattered heavy showers, and a severe weather warning was given for some parts! Great.
So about four hours later it was all over – water from my soaking fleece was running down my arms and dripping heavily from the cuffs, my trousers were sticking to my legs, socks damp, my Domke pouches, full of my gear were dripping wet. My notebook, containing all my names and quotes and other information I would use to help me write up my piece to accompany the photos was soaked, pages stuck together. Generally, a bit of a nightmare.
My main concern was obviously going to be my camera gear – 2 Nikon D2x, 12-24, 24-70, 70-200 and 2 x SB800’s. One of the speedlights and the 24-70 remained in my pouches, not worth changing the lens and risking water getting inside the camera, which it was bound to do, so they were left. But the rest was out and exposed for the duration. I’ve had my gear wet before but never to the same degree as this, the rain never eased really for the whole event.
It reached the point were you couldn’t really see through the viewfinder to compose and if it wasn’t for autofocus you would struggle to get anything.
Towards the end I gave up on wiping the lens of the 12-24 with my chamoix leather cloth, just couldn’t get rid of the smears so I tucked the lens into my fleece pocket as the camera hung from my shoulder to try and protect it and worked with my other camera.
It has to be said that the weather protection now built into these cameras is incredibly effective and saved my gear from some serious damage.
Hopefully I came away with something useful and it was a challenge to try and keep concentration and get the pictures I wanted to get.