Canon G11 – The perfect mountain camera?

February 4th, 2010

Rich Crane climbing fat yellow ice in Norway - Canon G11 - Copyright Alex Ekins

So what is the definition of a perfect climbing camera? The feature that is foremost in my considerations is image quality. Also the ability to operate the camera easily in extreme conditions and while wearing gloves. I wanted to give my new Canon G11 a test in challenging conditions and the Norwegian winter is fairly severe. The temperatures ranged from -10 to -20 and there was heavy snow fall. I prepared the camera for the colder temperatures by taping, hoping to add some insulation to the camera body. I also adapted the camera to use a lanyard rather than a neck strap, This enabled me to attach the camera to the zipper on the pocket of my jacket.

Rich Crane in Norway - Canon G11 - Copyright Alex Ekins

The main problem was dealing with the failing snow, this prevented use of fill-flash as the snow flake showed up as white blobs. I shot RAW but amazingly the images required minimal adjustment, the G11 seemed to cope with predominately white scenes extremely well.

Ice-Climber in Rjukan, Norway - Canon G11 - Copyright Alex Ekins

One piece of advice on taking pictures in snowy and icy conditions. Never go on a ice-climbing trip with climbing partners who only wear black. As can be seen in the picture above red works much better.

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