Thanks and yes - I should have provided more details about the trip. This is a "bucket list" trip for the two of us and yes we do hike/meander long distances by foot.
She likes to just point/shoot at whatever she likes and doesn't really care about time of day while I like to take 10 minute photos at the right times of the day or night. She doesn't care to use a tripod at all btw.
I guess the bigger question is do I take a monopod as a "tripod replacement" as a means to simplify things a bit or will I be kicking myself for not having the tripod and therefore missing the shot(s) entirely.
We are also planning our 14-day trip to Tanzania in July/August if this changes what the recommendations might be...
i suspect lightweight 4 section tripod would do the trick, amd assuming your workong from a "homebase" a carbon monopod woul do the trick. the tripod for dawn/dusk work and/or macro; and mono for daytime use. also assume you have a good backpack for carrying gear.
there are probably good threads in the travel or wildlife or landscape archive...people who have been there and can give you first hand advice better than me since i've never been there...
i think the simplification question is based more upon the logistics of w hether you have a daily homebase to work from, whether you'll be constantly staying in one hotel vs another, etc....
>Thanks and yes - I should have provided more details about >the trip. This is a "bucket list" trip for the >two of us and yes we do hike/meander long distances by foot. > > >She likes to just point/shoot at whatever she likes and >doesn't really care about time of day while I like to take 10 >minute photos at the right times of the day or night. She >doesn't care to use a tripod at all btw.
Is a good tabletop unit with a good ballhead an option for your shooting style? Kirk, Novoflex, RRS, and Leica all make units that should hold a heavy load with a good ballhead. But, they are really designed to sit on something other than the ground, unless you like that low angle. The upside is that this type of kit weighs around a pound, if you select carefully. Something to consider if weight is a concern.
How are you going to be carrying the camera's and equipment?
Do you have any budget issues...I bought a light travelling tripod with a Manfrotto head (simple) and if I recall, it was about $200 + for the entire thing..the lighter and smaller you go, the more it costs...I have a Benro.
As well, I have a Tamarac bag which will hold all you indicate and has a special pouch to hold the Tripod's feet...it clips att he top and holds it well...I found it useful to carry.
Have a look at Sirui travel tripod T-025 carbon. It comes with C-10 ball head for about $200. Folds to 300mm with head, extends to 1200mm, supports 6kg but weight about 500gr. Comes with Arca Swiss type plate. It is so small it is almost invisible.
With the lenses you mentioned (14-24/2.8, the 24-120/4 and the 50/1.8) on either the D700 or the D7000, a monopod, in my opinion, won't give you much help. Considering the hi ISO/low noise capability of these cameras, I don't think you're going to find much in the way of typical images they won't do a great job capturing while handheld.
On the other hand, for example, for Golden Hour photos, or night photos, a tripod can help quite a bit. I never leave home without my travel tripod for such shots. It's a Gitzo traveler, series 2 with a RRS BH40 head.
The question for you is, do you plan or expect to be making images for which a tripod will facilitate their creation? If so, for travel, you want the lightest weight, smallest, when folded, tripod which will handle the weight of your camera/lens, and the focal length of the longest lens you'll be using so you can actually count on getting those images because the tripod will handle the equipment and the situations in which they are used.
Too many people look solely at the weight of their camera/lens/attached equipment like a flash and compare that to the rated weight the tripod can carry. There's much more to it.
If you're taking a 14-24 and two camera bodies, and this is a "bucket list" trip, you'll want to have the tripod.
None of your gear suggests this is a "go light" trip. If it was, the 14-24 would be under debate.
A light ballhead can save weight. In my case the RRS BH-40 is a "go light" option to my BH-55. I think your 055/486RC2 is adequate and would try not to take the 222.
Watch the weight of your camera bag and unnecessary accessories. I have a bag that weights 5.5 pounds - more than my tripod. When weight matters, I can remove a lot of extras that drop 3 pounds or more from the pack.
I have a spreadsheet with the weight of every photo item I carry on a trip. When weight matters, it makes it easy to evaluate the trade off.
Also keep in mind that some items can be left in the room/car rather than carried. For example, if the D700 is your primary body, the D7000 and extra battery can stay in the room/car until it's needed. Of course, be sure you are insured.
I say bring the tripod. Further, I say spend some extra money up front and buy a light, compact one. I always regret not having mine, and if you're walking/meandering, you undoubtedly will come upon some spectacular scene at dusk that simply needs the tripod.
I have two tripods I use for traveling, one a very old Gitzo Traveler series, which is quite small and light (for a day long hike in the mountains), and another a newish Benro, quite light and small enough to throw in a backpack, or secure with a strap on my pack.
I just got back from a trip to the Philippines. I took an Induro CM-24 carbon fiber monopod. I made a sleeve for my Lowepro Slingshot 100 to carry it. I used it for some shots in covered markets and some dusk and dawn shots. I took a ballhead but next time would leave that at home and just attach the camera directly.