Embarrassing My Son with a Fanny Pack

I decided I hate carrying my camera in a messenger-style camera bag for extended periods of time. Thinking of an upcoming nine day trip with my son to Peru, the gear I want to take, and the weight of that gear on my back and shoulder during the long days of travel and  walking, I needed a better option.

Much to my teenage son's horror, Dad is going to wear a fanny pack.

This did not happen right away. My wife grew tired of me trying out, and talking about the various combinations of bodies and lenses I wanted take, and my detailed explanations of how I was going to pack it. Being helpful, and to shut me up, she suggested I consider the LL Bean waist packs that have been stored away in a closet for the past decade.

I,  of course, ignored her suggestions and kept searching Amazon for a camera carry solution. But as usual, she was right and I was wrong and I pulled out the waist pack, and with a few modifications, had an extremely practical, balanced, and portable solution.

The modifications were simple. I slid into the main compartment of the waist pack the padded foam insert from my Domke F803 messenger bag and, using a sharpie, I blackened out the bright yellow L.L. Bean stitching. Yes, when wearing a fanny pack, you want to be as stealthy as possible.

Domke insert fits nicely
In the main compartment goes the Fujifilm X-T1, 18-55 zoom, and 14mm wide angle lens. They both share a 58mm lens diameter so hoods and filters are interchangeable. The 18-55 lens is very sharp, versatile, and with OIS excellent for video and lower light situations. The 14mm is one of my favorite lenses and excels at photographing landscapes, architecture, and interiors.

Also in the main compartment is my Nexus 7 used for offloading photos from the X-T1 with the Fuji Remote App, and Snapseed and Polarr for editing images, and Google Photos for external storage and backup.

In the front pockets are extra batteries, a charger, cables, filters, a flashlight, aspirin, etc. The side pockets can accomodate a pair of water bottles or a water bottle and a travel tripod.

Overall, while my son thinks it looks goofy, it feels nicely balanced with everything easily accessible. He will just have to get used to it or walk several paces in front or behind me. I've promised him that if I don't embarrass him with my fanny pack, I'll just have to find other ways.


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