The last couple of days have seen me with the Phase One 645, Canon EOS 1Ds Mark III and Panasonic Lumix GF1 in some pretty testing conditions: the temperature is below zero, way below zero when you add in wind chill, with driving snow, yet the cameras continue to operate. The main problem I have is with the batteries – they don’t last as long in the cold weather, so I replace them with fresh ones. When the rechargeable batteries warm up back on ship, they regain much of their charge, but certainly the best advice is to have one or two spare batteries with you, especially for longer outdoor shoots in these types of conditions.
Was it really that bad? When I returned to the ship, I was amazed at how bright and clear my photos were! While shooting, the viewfinder and my spectacles were both so fogged up, I was often framing and hoping based on blurry shapes.
It is difficult to operate any camera with mittens, so my mittens with a flap to reveal fingers were a great help when needing to work quickly. Of course, with a bit more time (or when it was really cold) I could operate all cameras as long as I didn’t mind taking a few stabs at the relevant button!