|Tripod with strap attached|
|The tripod alone (left) can readily be carried more or less upright, but with the telescope mounted, it won't stay in place when upright and is most easily carried with the 'scope hanging downwards (right).|
After some research online and checking out forum posts, reviews, etc., I decided on the Mulepack from Cley Spy. I particularly liked this design because it acts both as a small conventional rucksack as well as a tripod carrier and the reviews suggested it was comfortable and durable.
|The large, flat carrying area, accessed via a diagonal zip on the back.|
To use the tripod, you just take it off your back and extend the legs as necessary. It is used with the Mulepack in place and this does not interfere with extending the legs or centre column at all. You can even take the centre column out (e.g. to use in a hide clamp) without disturbing the Mulepack. The centre column simply slips out of the loops made by the two straps. When putting it back, you just have to be careful to get it back through these two loops. It is also quite feasble to carry the tripod with the legs extended at least by one step. It is even possible to carry it fully extended, but I find that the legs do tend to hit the ground, so it is only good for short distances.
|Tripod in use, fully extended with the Mulepack attached.|
|Current field gear - camera on shoulder sling and telescope on the tripod carried rucksack-style in the Mulepack.|