Hi. I've been researching for quite a while now trying to find the perfect balance between quality, size, weight, and price in selecting a system that I can travel or hike with that still will produce top quality. I was looking into the Canon L glass first. I love what I've heard on the 17-40 f/4L lens and the 70-300 Diffractive Optic has piqued my interest (though I have reservations about the $1300 price and of reports of some very odd Bokeh). However, to complement the 70-300 I would need the 24-70 F.28L (my travel/hiking system would consist of usually those two lenses unless specifically intending to shoot landscape). Now I don't know if you've seen this lens, but it is a beast. It's has a large diameter and is aproximately 5 inches long, and it weighs in at slighty more than 2 lbs. It also costs a mint. I've looked for other zooms in canon's lineup, and I just am not impressed with the quality of any other alternatives in that focal range. So I looked outside of Canon. I checked Nikon, but they didn't seem to fit the bill, so I looked into a Contax - Zeiss Lens system. I was initially warry because I've heard how outrageosly expensive Zeiss glass can be, and in many of their lenses that is indeed the case. However, I've seen a Vario-Sonnar T* 24-85mm F3.5-4.5 available for $920 used (E+ condition) and a Zeiss Vario-Sonnar T* 70-200mm f3.5-4.5 available for $685 after rebate. The 24-85 is just 1.41 lbs and 2.8 inches long and 3.4 inches in diameter. The 70-200 is just 1.38 lbs and 4.2 inches long and 3.1 inches in diameter. Both look good on the MTF charts and users report the superb contrast and sharpness typical of Zeiss glass. I've thought of paring these two lenses with a Contax N1 that I've seen available used (E+ condition) for $684, it also weighs in light for a pro body at only 1.75 lbs. I still have an old rebel 2000 body that I was considering getting the 17-40 F/4L lens for and using it primarily as a dedicated landscape camera. So how does this sound? A Contax N1 Body with 2 Zeiss lenses covering a 24-200 focal range as a travel/hiking/all around use camera with an Rebel 2000 (lets just say light box) with a 17-40 L glass ultra-wide for Landscape. All of this equipment should come in at about $3000, under $2300 for the contax system. Is my thinking here sound? I would welcome any other viewpoints or suggestions in selecting a high quality system with a broad focal range that is relatively compact and not obsurdly heavy that I could travel and hike with.