Telephoto lens for use in Kenya

Started Apr 12, 2013 | Discussions thread
PHXAZCRAIG Forum Pro • Posts: 13,848
Re: Telephoto lens for use in Kenya

I've not been on safari (though my wife has been on two), but I've read a lot of threads on the subject.  Thom Hogan also blogged nicely about one of his workshops over there a couple of years ago, and he made some very nice points.

What you need depends a lot on where you go.   Game preserves where you can go off road need less lens than parks where you're forced to stay on roads and shoot from a distance.  Location and season means a lot.  Type of vehicle used means a lot.

That said, it always seemed to me that a good 80-400 would be a near-ideal safari lens.  The problem until recently was that IQ (and VR and focus speed) was lacking on the AF 80-400vr.    The AF-S 80-400 has pretty much fixed that, though I still don't trust the VR to give the best results.  (I have both old and new 80-400).

I'd want two cameras with complementary zoom range, one wide to mid-telephoto (24-70 or 24-120) and one with the 80-400vr.    If you need a bit more range, the new 80-400 with 1.4TC isn't bad at all.   I'd also have a shirt-pocket camera with me in case an animal jumps on the hood of the safari vehicle.

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