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Author Topic: Bejing/ china in july - getiing to the China Wall  (Read 8564 times)
Jann Lipka
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« on: June 01, 2006, 02:51:56 AM »
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I understand july is probably much to hot for going to China, Bejing ( 7 days )
but I'm more afraid of sandstorms effects on my 1 Ds Mk2 chip ...:-)

( my P45 stays at home )


And yes 24- 70 L2.8 stays on during all time.
Wil take with me loads of plastic bags .


It is mainly family trip ( 2 kids - 23 and 12 years old )


I have been reading some helpfull topics here , but would also appreciate tip on a
trip to China Wall, for our team of 4.

Is it a taxi trip or more of train ?

Any good vista points not so far away ?


I would also love some " unexpected " suggestion - not mentioned
on the " top 10 " guide  lists .Regards  from Stockholm .
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darrenr
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« Reply #1 on: June 01, 2006, 10:13:37 AM »
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The best way to get to the Great Wall of China is to organise a trip with a tourist bus.  There are no trains or buses and a taxi could leave you stranded and cost you a lot.  If you haven't already, get some books like those from the Lonely Planet Guide on Beijing - they have two just for this city alone.

The ride there is pretty non-eventful and depending on the weather, you probably won't see very much anyway.

If you're going for tourist things, just stick to the known tourist things around the city centre.  There's lots of good eye candy there.

I'd also suggest getting out on foot and walking through the area south of Tiananmen Square - walk to/from the entrance to the Underground City.

If you score some real blue sky days, you probably want to concentrate on things like the Temple of Heaven and the Summer Palace.
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Smack
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« Reply #2 on: June 05, 2006, 07:52:40 PM »
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Badaling and Mutianyu are places along the Great Wall that are close to Beijing.  You'll have no problem getting there via tourist bus (I was a backpacker back then and I considered my self pretty hardcore - no tourist me, a traveller - but the options to get to Mutianyu or Badaling for a day trip were few).  

Now it's been a long time (13 years) since I was there so things may have changed but when I was  there, Mutianyu has restored sections of the wall as well as unrestored.  Personally, I found the unrestored sections to be as impressive as the restored.  

There are some spectacular vistas at Mutianyu.  The wall runs along mountain ridges for miles and miles into the distance.  Attacking China across the mountains would be tough enough.  If you could do that I doubt the extra 30 feet of wall on the top would make a difference.

I'd recommend going to flickr.com and searching for Mutianyu or Badaling.  You'll get thousands of shots.  Most are quite pedestrian but they'll give you an idea of what you're getting in to.

Regards,

Steve
« Last Edit: June 05, 2006, 07:54:51 PM by Smack » Logged
BernardLanguillier
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« Reply #3 on: June 05, 2006, 08:57:56 PM »
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Mutianyu is said to be less touristy than Badaling these days. I would avoid weekends though.



Cheeers,
Bernard
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tensai
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« Reply #4 on: June 05, 2006, 10:34:15 PM »
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Oh - I really like that photo you made there Bernard.. Love the colours and detail vs the oof backdrop. What did you take that with if I may ask?

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Mutianyu is said to be less touristy than Badaling these days. I would avoid weekends though.

http://static.flickr.com/51/131636181_1a670e007a_o.jpg

Cheeers,
Bernard
[a href=\"index.php?act=findpost&pid=67495\"][{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]
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Eric Myrvaagnes
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« Reply #5 on: June 05, 2006, 10:36:38 PM »
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Lovely photo, Bernard! Thanks for sharing it.

Eric
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Jann Lipka
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« Reply #6 on: June 06, 2006, 12:10:21 AM »
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Great input from anyone, thanks !

From what I see Badaling would impress my 12year old more :-)

http://www.flickr.com/photos/gregorymcnamee/67262313/

I love flickr for location "scouting"

regards
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BernardLanguillier
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« Reply #7 on: June 06, 2006, 04:20:24 AM »
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Oh - I really like that photo you made there Bernard.. Love the colours and detail vs the oof backdrop. What did you take that with if I may ask?
[a href=\"index.php?act=findpost&pid=67499\"][{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]

You may. :-) Thanks for the nice words.

It is a stitch made up of 2*5 = 10 D2x images.

cheers,
Bernard
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Gregory
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« Reply #8 on: June 10, 2006, 09:08:37 AM »
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It is a stitch made up of 2*5 = 10 D2x images.
[a href=\"index.php?act=findpost&pid=67517\"][{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]

hi.

'seamless' panoramas aren't easy to shoot.

did you use a special tripod to find and use the focal point when taking the 10 photos? or did you use an everyday tripod?
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tensai
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« Reply #9 on: June 10, 2006, 09:14:27 PM »
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You may. :-) Thanks for the nice words.

It is a stitch made up of 2*5 = 10 D2x images.

cheers,
Bernard
[a href=\"index.php?act=findpost&pid=67517\"][{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]

Bernard, as I said, I really like it. Seems like you can also extend the dynamic range of the scene by exposing for the particular areas differently instead of keeping the exposure consistent during capture.

That way you could prevent blown out skies etc. but might introduce stitching problems obviously.
Your photo does have a very nice luminous quality to it, so I was wondering if that was in the scene; if that was done in post; or if you altered exposure for the different shots?

Would love to see some more...
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russell a
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« Reply #10 on: June 10, 2006, 11:48:20 PM »
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It is mainly family trip ( 2 kids - 23 and 12 years old )
[a href=\"index.php?act=findpost&pid=67077\"][{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]
Let me be contrarian. I believe it is difficult, if not virtually impossible, to combine the goals of a family outing and a photographic outing.  And, if one tries, one risks that neither goal will be achieved.  The constraints of time and the pressures of the "tourist" schedule will mitigate against achieving the best settings, lighting, etc..  Unless the whole family truly shares the photographer's agenda, the attempts to get photos will dilute the family experience.  Choose your priorities carefully.  If it were me, I would take a decent "tourist" camera, set my photographic expectations quite low, and, rather than experience the trip through the viewfinder, focus the trip on the family interests.  Then, any photos you get through good luck are icing on the cake.  

One can plan separate dedicated photo expeditions; the memory of an outing focused on the family can be a gift that will have more meaning to your children than any of your photographic trophies.
« Last Edit: June 10, 2006, 11:49:19 PM by russell a » Logged
Gregory
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« Reply #11 on: June 14, 2006, 12:00:43 PM »
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Let me be contrarian. I believe it is difficult, if not virtually impossible, to combine the goals of a family outing and a photographic outing.
[a href=\"index.php?act=findpost&pid=67899\"][{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]

I agree. even a photographic trip with my wife is problematic because while I'm studying the scene and trying to create something in the camera, my wife is getting bored. for that reason, I hope that when we do go on potentially photographic trips that one or more of my wife's sisters will come, people who can accompany her on (window) shopping trips while I'm doing my camera thing.
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BernardLanguillier
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« Reply #12 on: June 15, 2006, 04:24:06 AM »
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Your photo does have a very nice luminous quality to it, so I was wondering if that was in the scene; if that was done in post; or if you altered exposure for the different shots?

Would love to see some more...
[a href=\"index.php?act=findpost&pid=67893\"][{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]

I think that it is the clarity of the eye?...  Maybe not though...

All the images were shot at the same exposure in this case as far as I recall. Light was soft, and well within the DR of the sensor.

Regards,
Bernard
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BernardLanguillier
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« Reply #13 on: June 15, 2006, 04:25:51 AM »
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'seamless' panoramas aren't easy to shoot.

did you use a special tripod to find and use the focal point when taking the 10 photos? or did you use an everyday tripod?
[a href=\"index.php?act=findpost&pid=67849\"][{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]

Yep, Gitzo 1257 tripod, spherical pano head from RRS and lens positioned within .5 mm of its entrance pupil.

The key though is the absence of wind.

Regards,
Bernard
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BernardLanguillier
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« Reply #14 on: June 15, 2006, 04:30:04 AM »
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Let me be contrarian. I believe it is difficult, if not virtually impossible, to combine the goals of a family outing and a photographic outing.  [a href=\"index.php?act=findpost&pid=67899\"][{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]

I couldn't agree more. It is a recipe for disaster.

As far as I am concerned, I am trying to increase more and more the time I spend in a given shooting locale. Last time was 5 hours spent within 300 metres around the summit of a mountain somewhere in the Japanese alps. The weather was cold and windy, but patience always pays off.

The result were only 2 or 3 decent images, but it would have been zero had I been there with a spouse rushing for the next spot.



Regards,
Bernard
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BlasR
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« Reply #15 on: June 15, 2006, 08:31:22 AM »
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I love my WIFE, she with me all the time. I can't ask for better one. Amen

BlasR
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Lisa Nikodym
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« Reply #16 on: June 15, 2006, 09:53:54 AM »
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Wonderful mountain shot, Bernard.   I especially love the hint of even taller mountains in the clouds in the distance.

I'm very lucky in having a spouse who not only carries most of the camera gear (he insists, since he can hike farther than me) but who enjoys helping with the photography.  He'll occasionally stop and say, "Don't you think that would be a good shot over that way?", and he's often right.  While he's a generally hyperactive person who can't sit still, he is content to do so without complaining on the occasions I'm messing with lenses and tripods for awhile.  On the other hand, I rarely stay in one place for more than five minutes too, so he doesn't often have to wait long.  I think I'll keep him.  

Maybe the people who have trouble mixing photography with family vacations should see if they can get their family interested in helping with the photography, even if it's just pointing out good things to photograph, but maybe even getting everyone an inexpensive camera so they can compare shots.  It won't work for everyone, but it would for some...

Lisa
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Gregory
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« Reply #17 on: June 23, 2006, 11:22:06 PM »
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Yep, Gitzo 1257 tripod, spherical pano head from RRS and lens positioned within .5 mm of its entrance pupil.[a href=\"index.php?act=findpost&pid=68221\"][{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]
hi Bernard.

could you please expand on this? which pano head did you use? how did you position the lense to the correct nodal position? on a slide?

kind regards,
Gregory
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vjbelle
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« Reply #18 on: June 25, 2006, 11:53:59 AM »
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Hello Jann,

My wife and I were in Beijing last fall and the trip to Badaling was about an hour by car.  It will be very crowded in no time  - so I suggest that you get an early start.  I also suggest that you hire a driver - this may sound extravagent but you will never regret it.  I don't recall the exact price but I think that the driver and car cost me about $200.00 US dollars.  Its the only way to go!  You will also find that English is not spoken much so if you choose to travel by bus make sure of your arrival/departure times.  The wall is very physically taxing - your camera will get heavy very quickly.  I travelled with a P25 and a V system at the time and clearly remember how quickly I got out of breath.  

I found the Summer Palace and the forbidden city much more interesting for photography - there are endless images available.  

Best of luck..... have a great trip!

Victor
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Jann Lipka
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« Reply #19 on: June 25, 2006, 12:43:26 PM »
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Thanks Victor,
Actually I think travelling with my family is a good thing -
a lot of stock images is sold easier with a model :-)

I have a deal with my family and friends - they get 25% of my cut .
Only my daughter refuses .
I probably sold too many images that end up in strange publications .
OTOH - we will be travelling with a family of friends too !
I guess it will be a bus trip anyway .


I wil not be doing any heavy tripod landscapes - just Mk2 with 24- 70 .
" quick and dirty" snaps  .
P45 stays at home .
Its LCD screen drives me nuts .
OTOH H2 plus 80 mm + P45 is much lighter then Mk2 + 24-70 L F2.8 :-(
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