My Konica 35mm Camera traveled far and high with me for many years

It was an unassuming but solidly-built Japanese single-lens reflex (SLR)--- heavy, unadorned, with not even a light meter. Of course, it shot 35mm film. There weren't a multitude of film choices back then, and my usual film choice was slide film, usually Kodachrome. Here I spot an unusual visualization of the climbing experience in my companion's sunglasses on Diamond Peak. Reflected in the sunglasses is the view northward, and the distant white peaks are the Three Sisters, Broken Top and Mt. Bachelor.

Diamond Peak is near Odell and Crescent Lakes, and juts into the blue sky to over 8,700 feet high. The peak lies just south of Hwy 58 and the Willamette Pass Ski Area.

The reader may be interested to know that "Konica" is still in business (2005) and still producing cameras for a worldwide market! Their current line-up includes the $2,500 Konica Hexar 35mm LE rangefinder camera with an F2.0 lens and "no plastics," solid, all-metal construction. It's an updated, trim jewel that I would love to carry up my next peak in 2005.

In those early days, my favorite "pocket" camera for lightweight travelling was a little guy made by "Petri." It was a solid, metal 35mm rangefinder camera with a retractible, fixed-focus lens (no Zoom lens, here, Mama!).... Now I wish I still had mine because I see that they've become collectibles, in 2007 selling for around $350. Petri Color 35 camera.

After the Petri, I acquired my all-time favorite compact rangefinder 35mm, a Rollei 35S. It met an untimely end when it toppled out of my pocket into a bucket of soapy water that I was using to wash my car. Despite being immersed less than 1 or 2 seconds, the soapy water instantly penetrated between the lens compoments and into the shutter blades. They seemed to rust within an hour, and that was the end of my favorite camera.


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