Practicing for Safari... learnings

Discussion in 'Native Lenses' started by StefanKruse, Mar 12, 2017.

  1. StefanKruse

    StefanKruse Mu-43 Veteran

    400
    Jan 28, 2015
    Denmark
    Stefan
    Hi all,
    About a month ago I asked the forum for help on what lens to get for an upcoming safari. Based on the advice I received I have decided to buy the Olympus 75-300mm II, but I am still waiting to see if a good deal comes up. In the mean time I wanted to take on some of the other advice I got, to practice, practise, practise. I have never been a tele-shooter so I have never really spent a lot of time shooting Tele, but with this safari trip coming up I figured I better. So yesterday I took my 40-150mm R lens to a deer park close to where I live as I figured this should be good place to practice and learn.

    And boy do I have to learn :) Getting sharp telephotos even with the limited 150mm is hard! I shot S priority and kept shutter speed at 1/400 -1/500 (all handheld), but even with this I struggle getting those sharp crispy images I had planned in my head. So question:

    Do the images lack sharpness because:
    - Poor focusing lot of trees around and difficult to isolate my subjects and control focus point
    - Camera shake (do i need to lower shutter speed, improve technique or get Tri/monopod.

    Some learnings I took away from my trip:
    - I need a longer lens 150mm just doesnt cut it.
    - A little light can make a huge difference in terms of ISO requirement i.e. as soon as there was a little shadow Iso increased to 800-1000 and that really makes a quality difference.
    - If you cannot get the shot because of trees or other stuff blocking the way - then dont try and force it, it wont be a good shot and I am better off enjoying the seen without shooting it.
    - Monopod should come in handy if I am to have any success beyond 150mm
    - need more practice.
    - moving target are even tougher to nail i terms of focus
    - Depth of field is really thin at 150mm
    - pixel peeping is torture
    - when animal are the same color their surroundings, framing becomes more tricky
    - Backgrounds are important

    I currently suffer from severe cataract in my camera eye which doesnt help and that surely had an impact as I wasnt barely able o use the viewfinder for anything but giving me an idea of the framing.

    Below a sample of the best images, none are super sharp and I certainly hope to get better shots when in Africa. But all in all in am satisfied with some of them

    Please let me know of any advice, tips, recommendations etc. you have. I cannot afford a more expensive lens and rentals are not an option :) Dyrehaven170311. Dyrehaven170311-2. Dyrehaven170311-3. Dyrehaven170311-4. Dyrehaven170311-5. Dyrehaven170311-6.

    Thanks,
     
  2. Phocal

    Phocal Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    Jan 3, 2014
    Ok, lots to go thru here...................

    First..................I seriously recommend you get the 75-300 as soon as possible so you can practice as much as possible before going.

    You are having the same problems with the 40-150 that you are going to have with the 75-300 and that is the light weight. Light is fine when you talk about carrying the lens around all day or how easy it is to handhold without getting tired....................light is also the biggest problem with getting sharp photos. Think about the size of say a 300mm f2.8 lens or a 600mm f4.0 lens............they are big and heavy and that helps with getting sharp photos in other ways then just better glass. When holding that 300/2.8 lens in the shooting position, you have to take a pretty deep breath to get the camera and lens to move with your breathing. Now hold your 40-150 in the shooting position and notice the movement of the system when breathing. When I use my 75-300 I have to concentrate more on my technique then I ever do with my 150/2 and EC-20............the weight helps me be more stable........yes......when you get to heavy you have issues with being able to just hold it in the shooting position which effects sharpness............there is fine line between being to heavy and to light, which is different for everyone. I just find the light weight of the 40-150 and 75-300 to be a little less then what I want. This is not just a photographers problem, look at competition shooting rifles for say the Biathlon where you would think that I want light weight because they are cross country skiing with them. Their guns are actually heavier then you would think, it's because the added weight helps with stability over a lighter gun....especially when breathing heavy from skiing. People also tend to forget the extreme focal length they are using because the lenses are so light and a lot of times don't really concentrate on technique because they forget.

    When shooting handheld I try to follow the old rule of 1/focal length. There is a lot of discussion about the rule and the general feeling is without IS this rule doesn't apply because the much higher pixel density of new sensors pick up smaller movements so without IS you need a faster shutter speed then 1/focal length. What that new rule should be is very much debatable, but I do feel that this thinking is true and valid. With IS, it all comes down to the ability of the IS and that of the photographer. I personally can handhold much lower then most people when I really concentrate on my technique. In the heat of the movement while trying to photograph animals I don't always concentrate on technique or have the time to...........so I try to stick with 1/focal length and find that gives me good latitude for when I don't really want to concentrate on technique. When the situation dictates I do lower the shutter speed and will go super low when I have to, but it does require more concentration on technique. 1/500 on the 40-150 should have been fast enough for handholding, but the light weight of the lens does require a bit more concentration then say my 150/2.

    Shooting thru trees and bushes can be problematic. First, make sure you are using the small focus point (not sure what camera you are using). With the small focus point on my EM1, I don't have many problems with trees or bushes. If I do, I just switch to manual focusing (have a FN button set up for it) and go from there. Not real sure what kind of problems you could be having......are you using one focus point? If not, then you really need to...............I always use a single focus point for all my photography and I move it around for best composition for the shot..........I never focus and recompose.....takes to much time........I try to crop very little so getting the composition right in camera allows me to print larger images because I have more image to play with. Try to elaborate and provide some images where you were having problems. My EM1 easily focused on this little gator for this shot.

    29304048805_d920a1dfae_h.
    Zoned In
    by RRcoleJR Photography, on Flickr

    You mention DoF being thin but that really is kind of an untrue myth about telephoto lenses. When you are close, it can be stupid thin..........but at larger distances it really is not thin at all. I downloaded your last two photographs so I could read the distance information from the exif data. In the last photo you are 165 feet from the two deer fighting, shooting at 150mm @ f5.6, you have a DoF of 64 feet. In the 2nd to last photo you are 75 feet from the deer and shooting at 150mm @ f5.6, so your DoF is just under 13 feet. It is when you start getting much closer and longer focal lengths that the DoF becomes super thin. A good example of the difference is shooting my Bigma at 500mm with a subject at 25 feet. Shooting at f8 gives a DoF of 2.1 inches, compared to your 40-150 at f8 which gives just under 2 feet, or your upcoming lens at 300mm @ f8.0 that is 6 inches. I did a lot of DoF calculation before I shot the last airshow because I wanted to see if shooting my 150/2 wide-open would provide me enough DoF to get the entire plane in focus...........at those distance the DoF is stupid large.

    Not sure what you mean by when animals are same color as background framing is hard. It could by your eye condition making it so, would need you to elaborate on that. Animals are colored so that they can blend in with their surroundings for survival. This is pretty much a standard problem in wildlife photography and something you have to find your own personal workaround for. Wildlife photography is not anything like photographing people, you can't just move that branch or ask them to move to a prettier background. Getting great wildlife photographs takes lots of practice and time in the field learning what works and what doesn't. What helps is getting as close as you can so you can get that smaller DoF and blow out the background.........easier with faster lenses, but not impossible with slower ones...........just takes more practice and creativity. Take this shot of mine of a burrowing owl that is the same color as his background. This is shot from about 25 feet away at 500mm @ f8.0 and has a DoF of only 2.1 inches........this enabled me to blow out the background so the owl pops from it.

    33155522665_196b2537f1_h.
    Burrowing Owl 04
    by RRcoleJR Photography, on Flickr

    People think that getting great shots is just a matter of being out there at the right time and in the right place, to some extant it is. But you have to know how your lens renders things and how to make it blow out the background (even when it is a slow aperture lens) to get your images to pop. Wildlife photography is not easy.............there is a reason not everyone is out there creating great wildlife images.

    Yes..........backgrounds are everything...............you either want to leave them to show the environment where the animals live or blow them out to make it pop. There is a time and place for both and both server a different purpose. I use both styles in my photography because I feel there is a benefit to both. But...........I don't try to make every situation fit both types...........that is impossible. Thru practice and 1000's and I mean many many 1000's of photographs I can make a pretty good guess how to shoot a subject and which style of shot is going to work best..........but is a deliberate decision that is made in the field before the shot is ever taken.

    As for ISO, I personally don't like going over 800 unless the subject is close. We lose to much detail in our images when the ISO rises, just a fact with our chosen sensor (which by the way I am fine with and it is a choice I personally made when I left Canon for Olympus). When close I will go as high as 2400 or so because when close you get more detail to help counteract losing detail to the higher ISO.

    I think your shots suffered from a combination of poor technique at telephoto shooting and to some extant the lens. I checked Lenstip and they didn't test the 40-150 R or the 75-300, but I suspect they are in the same league as my recently acquired Sigma 50-500 (I own both the 40-150R and 75-300).............a resolution on their chart in the mid 30's. I am finding the Bigma to be very good when I am under 75 feet, it just doesn't have the resolution for distance subjects like some of the more expensive lenses. Which also limits how much you can crop and still have good detail. I have seen great shots and have taken great shots with the 75-300, but you have to work within the limits of the lens.........which means distant subjects will not be as good as closer ones and less ability to crop.

    I think if you practice with the lens (which you need to get so you can) and work on your technique................both on a monopod/tripod and handheld..........you will get great photographs on your safari. Keep an eye on shutter speed and try to keep it at 1/focal length (or faster) when you can and when you can't to make sure you concentrate on your technique. I can't stress enough about practicing with this lens as the weight really is a detriment to getting sharp handheld shots.

    I am sure I miss some stuff...........so if you have any more questions ask and I will try to answer. If you need me to elaborate on anything let me know.

    Regards and good luck on your safari

    Ronnie
     
    Last edited: Mar 12, 2017
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  3. StefanKruse

    StefanKruse Mu-43 Veteran

    400
    Jan 28, 2015
    Denmark
    Stefan
    Thanks so much! Very helpful.

    I just checked the focus point size and was able to reduce that a bit, that should help.

    I only use one focus point (can you use more?) but I found it was too time-consuming to move it around, as by the time I had done so, the animal had moved and I would need to readjust, so I found that focusing and the recomposing worked better (in reality i didnt work i.e. when I came home and downloaded the pictures. Perhaps if I get to know a bit more about the animals and how they move and how much time I have available it will be better to move focus point.

    Your point about DoF was also very useful as I now know that was not the issue, e.g the deer fighting should be in focus all day long with that DoF, so it must have been bad technique. I was moving a lot through the forest and bushes to follow the deer moving around, and perhaps I was not patient enough as well, to really "focus" instead of just shooting away - I will work on that the next time.

    It is definitely not just about being in the right spot the right time (although that does help :)) but I found that I probably need to work on my patience quite a bit and try and get set up properly for the shot instead of shooting away and just hoping that some will be sharp and in focus if I shot enough. And then work on my breathing and see how I can ensure to keep the camera still.

    I have a birthday coming up in a months time when I plan to buy the 75-300, that will give me 2 months of practice before I leave for Africa, which should allow me a bit of time to practice, hopefully I can get 6-8 sessions in practicing on ducks, deer, dogs and perhaps a trip to the zoo.

    My point about animals looking like there surroundings was just simply, that it requires much more consideration and thought, as to how you can get that eye catching effect which I love when I see stuff like you gator shots (which are stunning!) what I like is that even though the baby gator takes up only a small part of the frame, you instantly recognize the gator eye, through you composition, focus, DOF etc. in many of my pictures of the deer, you have to search for the deer and in some of them you wouldn't see them unless you knew what to look for :)
     
  4. oldracer

    oldracer Mu-43 Hall of Famer Subscribing Member

    Oct 1, 2010
    USA
    No. @Phocal@Phocal recommends single-point autofocus and he does some really good photography. I prefer simply switching to manual focus; why try to coax the camera into doing something you can easily do for yourself?

    One reason I wouldn't use the point focus is that I find myself often forgetting that I have changed some critical setting and end up shooting subsequent pictures with a setting that is inappropriate. So I try not to mess with things unnecessarily. Same story on metering, pinpoint metering has its place but 99% of the time I stick with center-weighted.

    This lady was shot with a 100-300 cranked all the way out manual focusing with a Panny G1, which is far from the easiest camera for manual focus. So she's not as nice as @Phocal@Phocal's little gator. But as you can see, the twigs between the lady and me would have gotten the autofocus so I had to do something.

    50326-34ba514af2bf98c70a038fbf5b54933f.
     
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  5. barry13

    barry13 Super Moderator; Photon Wrangler Subscribing Member

    Mar 7, 2014
    Southern California
    Barry
    Hi, if you're having trouble holding the camera steady, a monopod may help.
    Find out if the Safari vehicles will have somewhere to rest your camera, and if not, ask if a monopod would be practical there too.
     
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  6. StefanKruse

    StefanKruse Mu-43 Veteran

    400
    Jan 28, 2015
    Denmark
    Stefan
    Thanks - very nice shot - hopefully I can get something similar. Good advice about manual focussing. I have never used manual focus that much as I have always been afraid that I am not able to nail it, but as Phocal pointed out DoF is really not that shallow, so I should be able to do it. Currently though with severe cataract in my focus eye I cant do it, but that should be fixed in a months time. Then I will try and work with manual focussing as well. Previously when focussing manually I have found myself obsessively adjusting focus by turning the focus 1 mm right and 2mm left and so forth, but I guess that with the DoF in question here that is not really necessary?
     
  7. StefanKruse

    StefanKruse Mu-43 Veteran

    400
    Jan 28, 2015
    Denmark
    Stefan
    Thanks, I plan to bring a monopod - I need all the help I can get :)
     
  8. RAH

    RAH Mu-43 Veteran Subscribing Member

    389
    Dec 1, 2013
    New Hampshire
    Rich
    If you are going to get a monopod, then you REALLY better practice, IMHO. They can actually make things worse unless you know how to handle them. For example, just holding one straight out in front of you is not a good way to do it - it will sway back and forth and is hard to stop this suble movement. There is a good writeup here:

    How To Use A Monopod & Multi-Purpose Tripod

    I use Option 3.

    I agree with @Phocal@Phocal's advice to use single point AF.

    If there are branches in the way, I have had good luck with just trying a half-press over and over (shifting the lens AF point around slightly between half-presses) till it gets the correct object in focus.

    If it is "hunting" hopelessly and badly out-of-focus, you can help it by switching to MF and getting the focus in the ballpark, and then switching it back to AF and doing a half-press. This can be tricky, however. Some lenses allow "full-time" manual override with AF - this allows you to do an AF with the half-press and then tweak the focus manually by turning the focus mechanism (while still half-pressing) WITHOUT switching the lens to MF. Unfortunately, I do not think the 75-300 allows this.

    Myself, I try to not use MF with such a high-powered lens, especially when handholding. Just me; you may be able to do it.

    I think that the biggest improvment would be to use a tripod. If you cannot, then of course a faster shutter speed (and better technique, but easier said than done) is the answer - boost the ISO! It is better to get some noise in sharp images than a nice clean blurry image!! You can always clean up noise afterwards, but a not-sharp image is not really fixable.

    You might consider a really small travel tripod like the Sirui T-004 or T-024 if you are worried about weight and space. The T-024 (carbon fiber) only weighs 2 lbs and it would surely help, I think.
     
  9. AussiePhil

    AussiePhil Mu-43 All-Pro

    Jun 1, 2014
    Canberra, ACT, Aust
    Phil
    Honestly great advice so far and even better you are practicing, analyzing and asking question. More than half way to improving.
    Personally I'd try and perfect your single point center AF technique before even playing with manual focus if you have not done it before. MF can be stupidly hard ESPECIALLY if your eye condition limits your sight as you suggest it does.... trust the AF.

    I hand hold the pl100-400 at 400mm down to around 1/100 without really thinking about it but I've shot long tell for far to many years..... it just takes practice.
     
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  10. oldracer

    oldracer Mu-43 Hall of Famer Subscribing Member

    Oct 1, 2010
    USA
    @StefanKruse@StefanKruse, sorry I missed the bit about the cataract. With that constraint, single point AF is certainly the best option.

    Re monopod, what @RAH@RAH said. The important thing is to lose the idea that a monopod is a vertical stick that holds the camera up and, with that, realize that you'll need a ball head. If you go here: Monopod question ( See Post #12.) you can read a long-winded explanation of how I use a monopod in a game drive vehicle. @RAH@RAH has given you a good link for technique. Here is another: How to Hold a Monopod | Photography Mad Note especially the idea of using the monopod to raise your camera above your head. More: https://www.mu-43.com/threads/monopod-for-sports-photography.90051/#post-991394 Coincidentally, also Post #12.

    Re tripod, my wife and I have been to Africa six or seven times and have probably spent about six weeks on photo safaris in SA, Zimbabwe, Namibia, Tanzania, and Kenya. Once and only once, during an evening watching flamingos at Lake Natron, have I used a tripod on safari. Normally you will be in open game drive vehicles or in pop-top Toyotas. No way to set up a tripod and you are not allowed to leave the vehicle in most cases. The open game drive vehicles are my favorite as there is plenty of flexibility to use a monopod, shoot two bodies, etc. In the pop-tops, you are like a bunch of meerkats standing up and vying for space. There, though, the top edge of the roof makes a pretty good rest. If you like bean bags, one of those would work too. But tripods, even little table top ones, would probably put the camera too high for most people of normal height. YMMV, of course, but if it were me I would not haul a tripod.
     
    Last edited: Mar 13, 2017
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  11. Carbonman

    Carbonman Mu-43 All-Pro Subscribing Member

    Jul 10, 2014
    Vancouver BC
    Graham
    If you have a severe cataract, you will have poor contrast as well as poor ability to focus and see detail. You might want to get the cataract removed and an implant installed if your healthcare system covers it. I've had both eyes done and the change in everything including photography has been amazing. It was day surgery in each case (10 minutes for the first, 20 minutes for the second) and has greatly improved my work and personal life.
    I agree wholeheartedly with @AussiePhil@AussiePhil regarding practice; you need to get your body to automatically assume the proper stance and relax to minimize shaking when using your long lens. The 40-150 R is a really good little lens but lacks the reach and large aperture (= higher shutter speed) to capture most wildlife in the wild.
     
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  12. StefanKruse

    StefanKruse Mu-43 Veteran

    400
    Jan 28, 2015
    Denmark
    Stefan
    Thanks I will take a look at the links. We should be i an open vehicle with only our family of 4 so I only have to fight my family for space :) and tripod is definitely out of the question. I dont like them one bit and it seems it would be futile to bring one except for the occasional sunset shot. I will try and experiment a bit with manual focus once my cataract is removed.

    Thanks both regarding cataract I have an operation scheduled mid april, so my focus eye should be back working for the trip in June :)
     
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  13. Matt Drown

    Matt Drown Mu-43 Regular

    36
    Dec 9, 2015
    In 2006 I went on a safari in Tanzania with my family. Where you are going is important when getting advice because you are different ranges from animals and have different rules about in/out of vehicles, etc. I can only offer advice from my one trip.

    I was shooting a Canon 20D (1.6 crop) at the time, and we carried a 120-300 (~190-480 35equiv) Sigma, and a 100-400 (160-640 35eqiuv) Canon. With the 1.6 crop factor, both were great, though the weight of the 100-400 was far better, and had image stabilization.

    We had Toyota Landcruiser with 3 rows of seating, for 4 of us + driver. This meant two people per back-row, gear behind last row. Make sure you can get to your gear while sitting in the back seat of a car. A top-loading bag would have been better than the giant backpack I had for gear. Small stuff like this makes a difference. Figure out how many people in your vehicles, and how much space you have to move around.

    I bought EMPTY bean bags, and had them filled when we got to Tanzania. They strap onto the frame of the truck and give you a more stable base. No tripod, no Monopod. You are in the back seat of a truck, no real place to mount the things. You could get fancy and get a gimbal mount for the frame, but I suspect that may be overkill. I used the beanbags only about a third of the time, relying on elbows on the truck for most of the shots as my stabilizer.

    The 100-400 was ideal for many shots, so your 75-300 will be a good match for range. But, make sure you bring your 12-40Pro, or similar normal/wide. There are going to be times when you want to get wider pictures.

    This one was shot at 55mm (70 equiv).

    20060706-1609-248-4864.

    While this is at 300 (420 equiv)
    20060706-1616-248-4873.


    My old web page with pictures and exif data - Scotland - & Tanzania - June & July 2006
     
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  14. RAH

    RAH Mu-43 Veteran Subscribing Member

    389
    Dec 1, 2013
    New Hampshire
    Rich
    I have a few more AF suggestions:

    1) sometimes foreground objects (branches, etc) will cause the lens to focus on them instead of an object farther away, and it can be difficult to get the lens to refocus on the object you want, no matter what you point it at.

    One way around this problem is to zoom out a lot (even to the minimum focal length) and quickly focus on some distant object, even the ground at a distance - this will force the lens to reset itself to a more distant focus point. Then reframe with your subject in the middle, zoom in carefully and half-press. Even if it doesn't lock exactly onto your object, it may stay in the ballpark, and then you can use the technique I mentioned earlier of just moving the focus point around a little and repeatedly half-pressing (up, down, etc) till you lock on the object.

    2) the idea of zooming out can also be used just to FIND an object in the frame. Sometimes if you start at max zoom, it can be hard to figure out what you are looking at in the view. So zoom out, get your bearings, center it, and zoom in. This is one big advantage that a high-power zoom lens has over a prime.
     
  15. StefanKruse

    StefanKruse Mu-43 Veteran

    400
    Jan 28, 2015
    Denmark
    Stefan
    Thanks RAH - great suggestions
     
  16. Matt Drown

    Matt Drown Mu-43 Regular

    36
    Dec 9, 2015
    Speaking of AF, now would be a good time to practice back-button focus :)
     
  17. oldracer

    oldracer Mu-43 Hall of Famer Subscribing Member

    Oct 1, 2010
    USA
    Yes. This is the reason I won't use a fixed-focus telephoto for wildlife. It is like looking at the world through a soda straw. I tried the 300mm Tokina mirror on a trip to Panama and Costa Rica a few years ago and spent most of my time trying to find my subjects with the viewfinder. If I absolutely had to use a fixed focus lens, I would add a red dot sight like the Olympus EE-1 Dot Sight. I haven't used that particular one but, if it is like the red dots I have on several target pistols, it should work fine.
     
  18. Sniksekk

    Sniksekk Mu-43 Veteran Subscribing Member

    390
    Apr 7, 2015
    After watching this video (in the bottom of the post), I decided to buy a monopod myself.
    It worked perfectly for me. When ever I got tired of holding the 100-400 I used the monopod. Placed the bottom of the monopod in my seat, while standing besides it.
    It worked best when the action was on the same side as I was sitting ;)

    And tbh, I enjoyed the places in the back better then in the middle.

    We where sitting in a Toyota Landcruiser. There was room for 1 besides the driver, then there was 3 rows in the back of the car.
    Row 1 had 1 seat on each side, same had row 2.
    But row 3 had a seat in the middle, and I used it for my camera bag.

    The window in row 2, had a "window separator" disturbing some of the view out.
    The back row, I felt like i had 180 degree view out from the car.
    I never sat in row 1, but it had a lot of disturbing metal cause of the door.


     
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  19. oldracer

    oldracer Mu-43 Hall of Famer Subscribing Member

    Oct 1, 2010
    USA
    Some of the discussions mentioning "game drive vehicle" might be a little ambiguous. Here are some lab rats:

    upload_2017-3-13_14-44-58.
    This is the style I like the best. The posts (usually unpadded BTW) are good to brace against to steady a monopod or a camera. And the canvas comes down quickly in the rain.

    upload_2017-3-13_14-46-17.
    This is second best. Nothing to brace against and not much fun if it rains. But super visibility.

    upload_2017-3-13_14-47-11.
    This is the poorest for photography IMO. You have to pop up like meerkats and there is not room for the six or eight passengers that might be crammed into the seats. Really only two, maybe three people, can shoot out one side at a time and there are rarely animals on both sides. The good news, though, is that you can rest your elbows on the roof and have a very stable camera. Dusty windows pretty well preclude shooting from the inside. These are traveling machines, too, where the open vehicles just take you out and back from the camp.

    FWIW, the best seats in a game drive vehicle IMO are in the row behind the driver. People in the back row really get whipped around as the driver negotiates potholes, ruts, ditches, and guns it when crossing small streams.

    @StefanKruse@StefanKruse, you will not have a choice but if you are traveling with one outfitter you can probably contact them and ask what type vehicles to expect.
     
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  20. Holoholo55

    Holoholo55 Mu-43 All-Pro Subscribing Member

    Aug 13, 2014
    Honolulu, HI
    Walter
    @StefanKruse@StefanKruse If you have enough time before the safari, I too recommend getting the cataract surgery done. It would really make your photography more rewarding. How much time? At least a couple of months. I had it done on my non-shooting right eye and it made a world of difference, even in that eye. Light falling on my bad eye would cause glare that would affect vision in both eyes. I had the vision corrected in the right eye with a corrective implant, and since my left eye needed correction, the opthalmologist did LASIK on that eye to balance my vision out. I opted for distance vision in both eyes and use reading glasses for close distances. But, I was able to dump contacts and glasses and wear regular sunglasses for outside. I'd worn glasses or contacts almost my entire life. BTW, your doctor probably told you to wear sunglasses all the time outside, or should have. I still depend on AF as a focus aid, though, but am able to focus manually in a pinch.

    If you do that, you might be able to use manual focus. Otherwise, it'll be impossible, and you'll have to rely on auto focus. As others have noted, you may have to shoot through obstructions and/or with busy backgrounds, so using the smallest focus point will help. Also, keeping your shutter speed high, maybe as high or higher than 1/2x focal length would help especially with a lighter lens. I'd accept a little noise because of higher ISO than fuzziness due to blur. Monopod or some sort of brace too, although resting your camera on the vehicle may get vibrations if the engine is running. I've not been on safari, but that's what comes to my mind.