Have you ever wondered if a Canon 70-200mm L lens could survive a 150 foot near vertical end-over-end tumble into a canyon? Neither have I. Mainly because I once dropped a cheap wide angle lens a mere two feet onto carpet and the focus ring bit the dust. So I already knew the odds of high-altitude crash survival were slim.
I have always heard Canon products are built like rocks, but that’s not why I bought their system. It’s just what I started on and I’ve been happy so why switch to something else? Also, Kevin does most of the gear purchasing and when it comes to photo gear he goes big and somewhere in all his research I think he read how solidly Canon lenses are constructed. So that is how such nice glass came to rest in my bag and then the bottom of Twenty Mule Team Canyon. My bag that was not zipped, as it turns out, when we went to pick it up. NOT. GOOD.
Yes, time slowed down. Yes, I almost lunged. Yes, the word, “Nooooooooooooooo,” went through my mind all slow and hollow and echoey-sounding. Two grand worth of glass flashed before my eyes and another photographer said, “Uh-oh. What’d you just lose?” I replied with a chuckle, “The lens case. No lens in there, thankfully.”
So after what seemed like ten minutes of watching it fall in Olympic-style super slow-mo, the case came to rest and we thought we (two fellow visitors helped us watch it fall) had it’s location burned into our brains. Kevin said, “I can get down there,” because there was a trail. No sweat. Did I mention this thing is the EXACT color as the sand in that particular part of this park? I mean really. This place is a wash of colors that make you think when God created Death Valley He had just gotten out his paint palette then suddenly sneezed. But the one spot that had to be a somewhat boring beige would be right where we dropped a lens in its boring beige carrying case.
It took a solid ten minutes of hunting to find, with our new and helpful friends yelling down helpful hints like, “Maybe it went that way,” and, “Hurry! Before it rains!” I did find that funny because at this point I really still thought it was just the case. But Kevin retrieved it and brought it to the rim and told me, “The lens was in there.”