Although hiking in the mountains is my passion, I also spend a fair bit of time exploring more urban landscapes as well. My urban gear is much different than my outdoor gear, tending much more towards prime lenses than zooms. What I’m going to outline here is the typical bag I bring to and from work on a daily basis. It is, quite literally, everything that was in my bag when I emptied it to take this picture and write this post.

 

Annotated picture of my daily commuter gear, laid out on a table

No. Item Description
1 Ona Brixton This is my favorite around the town bag for light loads. Although it’s not as comfortable to carry as a backpack, the messenger style bag provides quick access for lens changes, especially since I’m often shooting primarily primes with this kit. Additionally, the lighter weight Fujifilm system I now use allows this bag to both have enough room and be light enough for longer excursions. Though if I know I’m going to be doing a lot of walking with it, I do take out everything but the essentials.
2 Fujifilm XF 14mm f/2.8 My ultra wide angle, landscape lens. It has a 21mm equivalent field of view. Not quite as wide as the Canon 16-35mm f/4 I used to shoot with, but faster. It’s small, light, and optically spectacular. At f/2.8, it’s the slowest prime lens I carry and the slowest lens in this kit. My only gripe: it lacks image stabilization, which for a landscape lens can come in handy in low light.
3 Fujifilm XF 23mm f/2 R WR I love wide angle lenses, hence the reason for two in this kit. The 14mm is for sweeping landscapes, but too much of that can get boring. The 23mm is a great street photography lens. I love the wider field of view, but not so wide that you have trouble focusing on something interesting.
4 Fujifilm XF 35mm f/2 R WR As a 50mm equivalent field of view, this is the normal lens in my kit. Called normal because it most accurately represents the natural field of view of the human eye. I’ve never really understood what that meant, since I can’t really see where my peripheral vision ends and my primary field of vision begins. Regardless, this is a fun focal length, especially when shooting people.
5 Fujifilm XF 56mm f/1.2 R This is my bokeh powerhouse and portrait lens. Currently the heaviest and fastest of all my prime lenses, it does a phenomenal job of separating the subject from the foreground and background, despite the X-T1 being a crop sensor.
6 Fujifilm X-T1 Early in 2017, I finally entered the Mirrorless market in a serious way with this camera. Despite the X-T2 being out, this has been an amazing camera that is, in some ways, faster and more powerful than my full frame Canon 6D. It’s far lighter and less bulky, and has come to be a more fun camera to shoot with for me. You will rarely see me without it.
7 Canon Speedlite 430EX III RT This small flash is more compact than my heavy and bulky 600EX RT. It’s good for most of my flash purposes. All manual, since this flash does not support Fuji TTL. I also usually bring the compact diffuser for bouncing light.
8 Peak Design Wrist Strap Especially with a messenger bag, I can often leave my camera in the bag while walking or standing, and grab it out quickly to take a picture. Having a minimal wrist strap is great for these circumstances.
9 Peak Design Slide Mountain Edition This is my favorite camera strap. It’s minimal look makes it flexible and easy to use. The quick connection allows me to switch quickly. To a different carrying mechanism. I first started with quick connect camera straps from Kata, and I’ve loved the flexibility.
10 Bang & Olufsen Beoplay H3 Earbuds My lightweight, compact earbuds. I love these guys. They are among the best audio for earbuds. They have been the picks by Wirecutter for best earbuds for several years now.
11 Apple iPad Pro 9.7” with Smart Keyboard On the go, I use my iPad heavily for computing needs. I can do 80% of what I need with it. I don’t, at the moment, use it for ingesting photos on the go. I shoot RAW+JPEG right now with my Fuji, and the iPad doesn’t seem to handle that well. Additionally, I currently need to run a plugin in Lightroom on my desktop to get the Fuji colors back on my RAF files after importing them into Lightroom. But I do use Lightroom CC syncing to edit photos on the go.
12 Apple Smart Pencil Sometime after I got my first iPad Pro, I stopped carrying pens and paper. I take notes almost exclusively on my iPad. If needed, I can always scan a document and take notes digitally from there. I use Notability primarily for my note-taking.
13 Kindle Paperwhite My iPad is great for a lot of media consumption, but when I want to just read, nothing really beats my Kindle. It’s super light, the e-ink means it does not strain my eyes and I don’t have to worry about glare.
14 iPhone 6 Plus When it comes to smart phones, I take my wife’s hand me downs. If I am doing serious digital work, I’m much more likely to pull out my iPad. In fact, I’ve removed email, social networks, and all my communication apps except for the Phone and Messages apps, so that I no longer can compulsively “check in.” It’s good to get disconnected.
15 Papers A nice pocket along the backside of the Brixton is a great place for any papers I might need. Generally 8.5 x 11 papers need to be folded in half to fit. Great way to limit how much paper I’m carrying.
16 Ziplock Bags I can’t tell you how many times I’ve needed a temporary way to store or carry something. I generally stash a couple ziplocks in all of my bags.
17 Lowepro Accessory Pouch This is where most of my photo accessories live. It’s the perfect size, and everything lined up to the right of it in the picture fits (yes, including the portable hard drive).
18 Filter Pouch This is my minimal filter kit. It’s a neoprene sleeve that holds 2 filters: a circular polarizer and a 3.0 / 10-stop ND filter. Both 58mm, they fit on my 14mm, which is the primary lens I shoot with filters. I have a 43–58mm step up ring to fit my smaller 23mm and 35mm lenses to those filters as well.
19 Seagate 4TB Portable Hard Drive This is one of 3 drives that is with me at any point in time. It’s an encrypted backup of my computer and has all my keeper photos on it.
20 SD Card Wallet I’m currently considering ways to remove this from the kit. It adds a lot of bulk for some very small items. But for the time being, it’s where I store all my SD cards, and it goes with me almost everywhere.
21 ThinkTank dual battery wallet This holds a couple extra Fujifilm batteries. Usually enough for any non-remote trips I take. The primary exception: star trails. A good star trail usually drains a battery or at least drains enough to to be able to take another.
22 Fujifilm X-T1 Flash This little guy ships with the X-T1. It’s powered by the camera, so no batteries. It’s great in a pinch and for fill flash in the outdoors.
23 Sandisk Extreme Pro SD Card Reader This little guy uses USB 3 and UHS-II for fast transfers of photos from my SD cards to my computer. There is a newer model that has replaced this one, but this works just fine. Combined with my Apple USB Camera Connection kit, it also allows loading of photos onto my iPad Pro in a pinch.
24 Hotshoe Bubble Level A small accessory that helps with landscape and architectural shots from a tripod.
25 OAproda USB Battery Charger For NP-W126 batteries, this slim guy charges my Fujifilm batteries with a micro-USB cord. I have other, faster chargers, but for on-the-go charging, it works great and remains compact so that I always have a charger with me.
26 Lenspen My favorite camera cleaning tool. It has a retractable brush on one end, and a felt, carbon cleaner on the other. The carbon cleaner works without any liquid cleaner, and is great for in the field fixes. Plus, the entire package is small and compact. Most photographers will swear by lenspen-type cleaners.
27 Canon Remote Release For triggering cameras during slow exposures. This guy is from my old film cameras and consumer DSLRs. Works great with my Fujifilm now.
28 Keys Of course, gotta have my keys.
29 Work ID Badge Working for a medical organization, it’s important to keep my ID badge on me at work.
30 Incase Accessory Bag Originally Incase called this a GoPro Accessory Bag, since then they’ve gone to a more generalized name. I love how it has a structure to it, and the clear plastic allows me to see inside quickly. This carries all my other cords, adapters, and gizmos. Everything to the right of it in the picture fits inside. Sometimes my keys and badge fit there too.
31 Leatherman Skeletool This utility knife is perfect for unexpected jobs. It has good pliers, a decent blade, and an effective philips head and flat head drive bit.
32 Rechargeable Headlamp This is an old Tikka Plus with a Petzl Core battery and a Zipka headband for compact rechargability.
33 Microfiber cloth and lens cleaning solution PRimarily for my glasses, but also can be used for a more thoroughly cleaning should my lens filters ever need it.
34 Giottos Rocket Blower The ideal choice for removing dust from lenses, filters, and sensors, as it requires no actual contact. I don’t usually need it, but there have been times where it’s been useful for removing an obstinate piece of dust from my sensor, especially in my Fujifilm which lacks a mirror to stop dust from reaching the sensor.
35 Cables Lightning, Micro USB, and Micro USB-3 for connecting and charging devices and hard drives.
36 Apple Lightning Adapters HDMI and VGA for connecting my iPad to external monitor and a USB Camera Connection Kit for connecting my SD Card Reader.
37 Goal Zero Flip 20 A USB Battery for charging all my various devices when away from an outlet.
38 USB Dual Wall Charger This charger has two 2.5A ports for charging up to two devices at a time.

Optional Items

Additionally, there are several optional items that I sometimes add to my kit which were not pictured above.

Item Description
Siriu Ultralight Traveller With center column removed, this light tripod weights only 1.7 pounds. It’s not tall, but it’s great for going light without giving up on long exposure shots.
Hydroflask I love vacuum sealed water bottles. Keeping water cold encourages me to drink more. when bringing a water bottle, I often have to leave behind my Canon Flash or some other part of my kit.
Jacket If you see me out on a cool or cold day, I probably have an Outdoor Research jacket with me.

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