How do you prepare for shooting in the heat?


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Aug 10, 2011
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Warminster, PA
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Exactly what the title says. Im asking this because I live outside of Philly and this week has been up in the 100s in terms of weather and the humidity is high. I will be outside shooting a car event at Englishtown raceway this sunday and I want to know how others prepare for this kind of weather. Not so worried about my gear but talking in terms of staying cool and not sweating my ass of all day (which I probably will). Mostl likely will be carrying a sling bag with one more lens in it but thats about it really.
I would wear a head band to help keep sweat out of your eyes and wear clothing that breathes. Don't forget to hydrate!! SAMs sells affordable sports shirts and hydration backpacks (camping section/$17.91).
I always wear a big straw hat with a wide brim. It's porous enough that it allows air to pass through but it still blocks the sun. The wide brim helps keep my chest, shoulders and back shaded. Tank up on water before you leave and either carry water with you or drink plenty while you're there.
I recently had to shoot some guys doing powerline work. 95 with a million percent humidity. I had to wear work boots, jeans and long sleeve FR shirt. I swear I was hallucinating by the end of the day.

Water, shade, sunscreen and take breaks.
I close my windows and crank up the AC.
I close my windows and crank up the AC.

...i'm with you,sparky.....i've spent the last week working in heat index's of 95-105.I rushed home tonite,showered,loaded up my stuff and headed to the track (an hour away).I made it about 6 miles before Mr Labatts & Mr A/C called me up and said they were stopping by the house tonite.I said " me change my oil/filter and I'll turn around".Turns out Mr A/C is a big help,but Mr Labatts........not so much.
Stay inside, turn up the AC and make sure that there's plenty of well chilled beverages in the studio 'fridge!
Previous good nights sleep, wide brimmed hat, loose fitting breathable clothing, sunscreen, water, water, water. This may shock some folks here that I utter these words, but stay away from the hooch until afterwards.
Plenty of water and a wide brim hat. Trick I use to do when working in the field was to roll up 3 to 4 ice cubes in a bandana and wear as a sweatband under my hat. Just don t drip on camera.
First, yes you are going to sweat your hiney off. No getting around that. Sunscreen, sunscreen sunscreen, because that sunburn later is going to be painful.

I would use one of the waist hydration packs instead of a backpack type one. I've found in the heat with a backpack one you get really warm as it sits against your back not letting air circulate. This one works pretty good and you can add pouches to the waist strap for carrying extras like batteries, filters, cleaning supplies, or smaller lenses. CamelBak FlashFlo LR Hydration Waistpack - 50 fl. oz. - Free Shipping at

these hats also work well to keep the sun off of your head and shade your eyes, the brim is floppy enough that when you turn the camera to portrait position it flips up out of the way. Columbia Coolhead Booney Hat with Cape at
Easy one to answer.

Top down.
I use an Australian leather hat but a cowboy hat will work just as well.
It keeps the sun off your head and neck so is just like a personal tent.

Face and exposed skin. High factor sun block. Carry the bottle - you'll need it as you sweat.

Shirt - Loose T shirt but not too thin as it must protect from the sun.

Shorts or very thin trousers.

Trainers or sports sandals.

Make sure you have water and don't drink anything alcoholic.

One of those ultra light beach/fishing shelters is nice if you have space to carry it and perhaps can even set up in it.
Short of anything else, it's a handy place to rest and get out of the sun.
Stay hydrated. That's about it. The high temps where you live are likely to be the low temps where I live. Wear a hat and find shade when you can.
Drink....Pee.....Repeat. If you miss any of those steps you are screwed.

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