With the introduction of our new series of travel tripods we hit the road to test them in the elements. We headed north to beautiful June Lake Loop and Mammoth Lakes in California. On day one, we knew we needed to get our early and take advantage of the clear skies so we were up before the sun. We enjoyed exploring the area entirely by ourselves. We hiked through the forest and scrambled down embankments so we could showcase the potential of these cool new travel tripods. The trip also gave us an opportunity to highlight the tripod’s industry first LED Flashlight. One of the super cool features of these tripods is the removable LED flashlight incorporated into the tripod’s center column. This feature saved us so much time searching for equipment in the backpack. It also helped us navigate our way down a steep embankment when we took it off the tripod and used it as a flashlight. It looked pretty awesome in the final photos too. We were able to carry all five LITE series tripods with us because of their lightweight and compact size. Weighing between 1.7lbs -2.4 lbs the AL-420, AL-420M, AL420S, CF 422 and CF522 allow photographers maximum versatility while traveling. Each tripod also features the Rapid Flip Mechanism, which makes set up and take down a literal snap. We shot with a Nikon D750 supported by the SLIK LITE AL-420, which easily supports up to 4.4 lbs. To give you an idea of how much it supports, the Nikon D750 weighs only 1.7lbs and the 24-79mm lens weighs 31 oz. The tripod itself weighs only 2.2lbs when stowed in a backpack and despite its lightweight, this tripod provides a wide and sturdy base. The terrain in this photo was a soft, grainy soil and the stability of the AL-420 was ideal for this terrain. We shot this photo with the Sony A7 supported by the SLIK LITE CF-422. We chose this carbon fiber tripod for it’s lightweight and compact size. Weighing only 2.4 lbs it was the ideal tripod for trekking up and around boulders. Despite its compact retracted size, the CF-422 is a full-size tripod reaching over 70 inches when fully extended. The rubber feet provided a stable base atop the rock as you can see in the above photo. Our most compact tripod, AL-420S, folds down to 12.3 inches. It's small size is the perfect choice for backpacking to this photo site. The hike to area took us down a steep embankment and out on a soft, sandy area that was at one time the bottom of the lake. In the dark it was a little treacherous, but the detachable LED light illuminated the path. The AL-420S provides maximum stability despite it lightweight and compact size. We shot this photo with a Nikon D570 with a 10 second exposure, so stability was important allowing us to capture the night sky. We used a Tokina 24-79mm lens at focal length 32mm/F2.8 with 1600 ISO. Another super cool feature of our SLIK LITE series is detachable and invertible center column that separates to convert to short column for low angle shots. Another great feature that makes the SLIK LITE series the ultimate in travel tripods. We used the CF-422 and the AL-420 to capture some great low-angle shots. This photo was shot just as the sun was rising over the mountain with the Sony A7 supported by the AL-420. The camera hovers 6 inches above the ground when the tripod center column is detached. It allowed us to capture this great shot of the road and the mountains behind. This photo shows the versatility of the CF-422 for low angle shots. The camera is 7 inches above the ground when the tripod center column is detached. This tripod provides stability for longer exposures allowing you to capture the soft quality of the river water especially when used with a Hoya Neutral Density filter. The backpack we used on this trip deserves mentioning because it was so versatile and easy to use especially in the middle of the night. The MindShift Gear Backlight 26L was the ideal companion. We love the design of the Backlight 26L. The rear-panel compartment allowed us access to our gear without taking off the backpack in the steep wet areas and also allowed us full access when detached from the body. If you haven’t heard of MindShift Gear, check them out at mindshiftgear.com. They make cool stuff. Responding to the increasingly sophisticated demands of our users, SLIK’s LITE series allows photographers to expand the range of their photographic expression without compromising versatility or adding weight. Retail prices range from $99.95-$329.95 and are available at slikusa.com.