Hiking is more than just a sport, it’s all about experiencing nature and observing the astonishing landscapes the world has to offer. In order to keep these memories intact and to be able to share them with the world, it is practical that you bring a camera along with you. With thousands of cameras on the market, it’s hard to narrow down what cameras are the best, and what cameras are even appropriate for hiking. In the world of hiking and backpacking, it’s no surprise that a hiking camera should be light, small, while also able to take high-quality pictures, while also being able to withstand the elements. To help you out, we did some research, here are the five best cameras for hitting the trails.
To start off with, the Fujifilm X-T10 is a wonderful option for hiking and backpacking. It is a trimmed down version of the X-T1 and weighs just 13.5 oz. This lightweight mirrorless camera offers DSLR-like image sensors in a compact frame and is great for hikers who want professional-grade photos without the bulk. This camera doesn’t have the weather sealing option that the Fujifilm X-T1 has, but for the cheaper price tag, and the classic feel that Fujifilm has to offer, this camera makes great for your longest hikes.
Action cameras have been all the rage since the GoPro first came out in 2002, and for good reason. Though they may not produce the highest quality images, these cameras are lightweight, waterproof, and nearly indestructible, making them great to take with you on all of your adventures. This camera is great for those who still want to document their hikes, but aren’t as concerned with the quality of their images, at least not enough to add the bulk of a DSLR.
The Canon Rebel SL1 is one of the smallest and lightest DSLR’s ever made, weighing only 13.1 oz without a lens. DSLR cameras do have one very large drawback when it comes to hiking cameras, the weight. However, with what you will be sacrificing to carry on your back, you will be gaining in excellent image quality. The Canon Rebel SL1s one of the most affordable DSLR’s on the market and will give so much more than the run of the mill point-and-shoot camera.
4. Sony a7R II
The Sony a7R II is the current leader of the pack for mirrorless cameras. These full-frame mirrorless cameras offer professional grade and lightweight set-ups, making them perfect for outdoor photography. This camera weighs only 22.1 oz, is weather sealing and has a reinforced mount that can handle larger lenses. Though the full-frame lens options are limited for this camera, it is a wonderful option for hiking and backpacking.
5. Nikon D810
Comparable to the Canon 5D Mark III, these two cameras are two of the top full-frame cameras in the world. Though they are extremely heavy compared to many other cameras, the quality of the image you will receive is notable. With a sensor size of 861 square mm and 36.3 megapixels, it is no surprise that these are the cream of the crop when it comes to photography. This camera is also weather resistant, so it’s ready for the extra mile in most conditions. For anyone who wants top-of-the-line image quality, the extra weight may just be worth it.
It all comes down to what you are willing to put into weight, price, and image quality as for what camera is going to be right for you. If you are especially into photography, a DSLR camera such as the Canon Rebel SL1 or Nikon D810 may be the choice for you. If the big bulk isn’t worth it, but you still want top quality, go for a mirrorless such as the Fujifilm X-T10 or Sony a7R II. If you’re alright with a lower image quality to compensate for a light and indestructible camera, the GoPro Hero5 Black is the way to go. There are many different ways to document your hike, but the best part is to simply get out there. Happy trails!