Rain Protection for Your Camera

04th July 2017
Did you ever listen to the weather report, which says sunny weather, and think "what a great day to go out and shoot"? You gather your equipment, hit the road and, bang, the dark clouds come out of nowhere and the rain starts. And there's some times I think
that the dark clouds follow me!

I figure since I can't control the weather, I should do what I can to protect my equipment. After looking around, I came up with a few solutions.

1. Carry an umbrella. I always take one with but juggling a camera and an umbrella is not easy. I tried that at a waterfall that I wanted to shoot and it didn't work very well. It was cumbersome to try to juggle both and many of my shots came out blurry.

2. A plastic bag. They're cheap and don't take up much space in your camera bag. Throw it over the lens, securing it with a rubber band. Poke a hole for the lens and viewfinder and you're good to go. It's cheap and works in a pinch.

3. A shower cap. On my last vacation I grabbed the ones from my hotel room and stuck them in my camera bag. They're large enough to go over my camera and lens in an emergency and can be thrown out afterwards.

4. A rain jacket. Companies like Op-Tech and Ewa Marine make multiple use camera protection jackets. I purchased several sizes of the Op-Tech raincoats at the last Photokina. They go on quickly, with a draw string for the lens cover and hole for the
viewfinder. It can take time to find the viewfinder hole - especially when you have to put it on quickly in a rain shower - but they work nicely. I've used them while photographing waterfalls and they've worked great.

I purchased a Ewa Marine U-B100 on Ebay recently. It's a bit bulkier than the plastic rain jackets (and comes in a carrying case) but it does provide good protection, especially when you're at the beach. It's great if you just want to use one lens; changing lenses necessitates removing the camera from the bag.

I'm sure there are other choices out there but these were just a few that I came up with. And, with me photographing waterfalls on my last two vacations, I found for quick lens changes and good general protection, the Op-Tech did the job well.