Best tripod suggestions ... and where good prices
Best Tripod Suggestions: What tripod would you recommend for a good sheep hunting spotting scope? A good tripod has other uses - for mounting binocs or larger cameras (dslr or video), but nothing usually heavier than a spotting scope, which for sheep hunting ranges, needs to be very steady. One feature that I would look for is an all-metal head because plastic components can crack/fail with hard use in cold temps. For optics general advice, Snyd has suggested birdwatching websites like, http://www.birdwatching.com/optics.html. This particular website has "The Tripod Advisor" (more below).
1. Velbon Maxi SF, or newer: Archives search found that Alasken, Alaska Lanche liked the Velbon Ultra Maxis (http://forums.outdoorsdirectory.com/...p/51366-Tripod). From the website (http://www.velbon.co.uk/newvelbon/pages/photo.html), looks like Velbon doesn't make the UM model anymore. Probably one of the newer models will be similar.
2. Vortex High Country: suggested by F-16Pointy, weighs 2.1lbs at $80. See at: http://www.cameralandny.com/tripods/...hcountrytripod
Manfrotto: In another thread (http://forums.outdoorsdirectory.com/...on-sheep-hunts...), danattherock recommended two Manfrotto tripod models that he likes for hisCanon dslr and Zeiss Diascope 85 spotter:
3. For $155 at 5.3lbs (2.4kg) , the Manfrotto 055XPROB Aluminum Tripod Legs (Black)
See at: http://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/produc...gs_Black_.html
4. For $260, weighing 2.9lbs (1.3kg) , the Manfrotto 190CX3 Carbon Fiber Tripod Legs (Black) See at http://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/produc...er_Tripod.html)
5. Others, including Gitzos - various prices are mentioned at http://www.birdwatching.com/tripods/...d_advisor.html
Any other tripods to consider for that sheep spotter?
Best places to shop for good tripods:
1. CameraLand (http://www.cameralandny.com/). Even if you don't know what you're looking for, this forum sponsor has offered buying advice to many satisfied Forums members.
2. Barney's Sports Chalet: in Anchorage also has a good reputation with Forums users. Great gear throughout the store. Another Forums sponsor where you can get your hands on stuff first. I found my Velbon tripod here.
3. Amazon: has tripods, some used, which might offer good deals if you know what you're looking for. Try searching "Velbon tripods" or something like that to help filter products.
I went with the Vortex High Country and they stock it at a fair price at Sportsmans Warehouse both Anchorage and Wasilla.
I have the Vortex High Country from Doug. Weight and size are great. I looked at one of the small Manfrotto models (dont remember model), but didn't like it near as much as the Vortex. I kinda wish someone would make one with features and layout like the Vortex, but with tighter tolerances and a little better quality materials. Obviously would cost more. Eastmans had this as one of their recommended compact tripods.