Chapter 16 of 20 from Jimmy Chin

Gear: Cameras, Lenses, Power, and Storage


Jimmy describes which cameras, lenses, and accessories he takes with him on shoots—and why.

Topics include: Go-To Cameras • Lenses • The Travel Kit • Backcountry Power • Travel Media Storage

Jimmy describes which cameras, lenses, and accessories he takes with him on shoots—and why.

Topics include: Go-To Cameras • Lenses • The Travel Kit • Backcountry Power • Travel Media Storage

Jimmy Chin

Jimmy Chin Teaches Adventure Photography

National Geographic photographer teaches his techniques for planning, capturing, and editing breathtaking photos.

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Push the limits of your photography

Jimmy Chin has built his career taking photos at the top of the world, earning him the cover of National Geographic and multiple awards. Now he’s taking you on location to teach you techniques for capturing breathtaking shots. Learn his different creative approaches for commercial shoots, editorial spreads, and passion projects. Gather the gear—and the perspective—to bring your photography to new heights.

From selecting the right gear to telling stories through images, Jimmy Chin teaches you how to plan shoots, capture the best shots, and edit in the studio.

A downloadable book accompanies the class with photography and supplemental learning material.

Upload videos to get feedback from the class. Jimmy will also critique select student work.


Students give MasterClass an average rating of 4.7 out of 5 stars.

This is an excellent class, very insirational and full of wisedom! Made me reminisce and dream of what's around the corner again!

Brilliant course - thanks so much! Extremely concise and wonderfully useful. Thanks to Jimmy for sharing his wisdom and experience!

I produce and shoot documentaries. There's something extremely pure about what he's doing. Nothing screams for nuanced, careful documentation like a climber at the peak of a mountain. It's beyond a cliche. This was beautifully done, the one is casual but it moves easily from one topic to the next. And whatever mic you're using in the sit-down interview is wonderful.

Exactly the way a course from Jimmy Chin should be. It referenced mindset and inspiration, the way great mentors do. Incredible.


Christian L.

would have been a lot usefull to get to numbers for storage... how many Go per days for photo / videos... exemples of SSD Drives... more info on that part please...

A fellow student

Question about storage: If I'm not carrying a laptop I can copy the contents of SD cards to my phone using a USB-C SD reader, but what I'd really like to do is connect two SD cards, or an SD card and SSD, and use my phone to copy from one to the other, making multiple copies. I tried a USB hub but that didn't work (possibly the phone doesn't support multiple devices on the USB and can't power an SSD). Any (reasonably priced) suggestions? Attached is a pic of my unsuccessful USB-C hub experiment. I would love to be able to make backups like this, somehow.

A fellow student

Just a photo enthusiast here. I primarily use an ultra-wide angle zoom (17-40, maybe I'll upgrade to the 16-35 someday), plus a 70-200 and 50mm prime on hikes. After watching this, I rented the 24-70 2.8 for a trip to Yosemite in the recent heavy snowstorms and I loved it. Only a few times I wished for something wider but in general a good range and I didn't want to change lenses in those conditions. BTW I carry it in a miggo agua stormproof holster which does a great job in snow, rain, and hail. Any other lenses I simply wrap up carefully and put in my backpack. I don't want to spend money on another pack designed for cameras. If I could find a lightweight, compact protective insert I'd go for that, but still looking. Oh and here's what I captured on that hike in Yosemite. Looking up at the sheer face of half dome. We were snow shoeing past mirror lake when the sun came out for half a minute to shine a spotlight on those trees. Shot at 70mm f/9. The falling show is backlit, making it look like dark splotches so at some point I'll go in and heal brush all that.

Jim C.

Nice set of equipment. Some of the lenses are more expensive than the camera bodies. Canon in the last year has come out with a mirrorless series of bodies. I haven’t heard any reviews, but have heard professional photographer friends praise mirrorless in general for their lightness, among other things. Solid state drives is a good tip.

Cam D.

Any thoughts on mirrorless bodies, especially in relation to the types of shoots you do, and in the sometimes harsh environments you shoot in?

Amelia D.

I’m curious how many camera batteries Jimmy takes with him and if they lose their charges quickly up high in the cold.

Erich R.

Hey Jimmy, I would love to know more about your thoughts on camera bags. I guess the real question would be how you store your camera when you are an active member of a team. Backpacks: Do you usually use a camera bag that can accommodate for the alpine or a climbing back that can fit camera gear inside? I know it probably varies depending on the situation. I recently read Jonathan Griffith's article, where he says he usually just tosses the camera in the climbing bag without a cap and just a filter (article below). Camera Bags: Do you usually have a camera bag external to you, or is that just for rock? How do you have quick access to your camera in alpine climbing situations where you are climbing with the group. Thank you so much for this course, it has helped me tremendously. Erich Roepke

Christian L.

Would love to know what is this TNF camera bag he use on climbs? And where I can find it.

David R.

I would also like to understand the various filters used. Polarizing? Filters for clouds? Filters anticipating B&W? Stuff like that. Thanks.

A fellow student

I would love to hear about Jimmy's use of filters ? Mainly ND and CPL filters ?