Gear Report: Travel Tripod: MeFoto Roadtrip Review

As is probably obvious to you by now, I do a lot of photography when I go hiking. Carrying all of that gear can be a hassle, though, which is why I look for products designed to be lightweight and travel-friendly. A travel tripod is an essential piece of equipment - let me tell you about my current one.

mefoto roadtrip review

I purchased the MeFoto Roadtrip (in aluminum) about a month ago, after my old tripod broke. MeFoto boasts that this little tripod can support up to 17.6lbs of gear while only weighing in at 3.6 lbs itself. It also comes in a carbon fiber body, which weighs 3.1 pounds. This review is for the aluminum Roadtrip Classic. 

mefoto roadtrip review
It comes in many excellent colors, including purple
The RoadTrip comes with an easy-to-use ballhead; however note that this head is not exchangeable. I found it smooth and enjoyable to work with. It comes with your standard 3 adjustment knobs. Note there is a bubble level on the top of the head, honestly in a not very useful place once your camera is mounted.
travel tripod review

The MeFoto Roadtrip tripod's leg sections are extended and collapsed via screw type closures rather than clasps. The downside of this mechanism is that you are unable to easily see if you've forgotten to tighten a leg section. However I do think this makes the tripod faster to set up. An additional plus is that there is no latch to stick out and get caught on your bag.

It has a max height of 53" without the center column being extended. I don't like to use the center column as I feel it makes the tripod wobbly. As an extra, with this tripod you can remove the center column and convert it into a monopod. This is actually really easy to do, and came in handy on my whale watching trip.

mefoto roadtrip review

travel tripod review

It packs down pretty small, making it easy to sneak it into a hiking pack or backpack. I typically carry mine in my pack without the legs folded over the center column, like is shown in the top image. It is about 21" long in this configuration. The legs can be folded backwards over the center column, like in the bottom image. This makes the tripod much wider, though, and gives you an extra step for setting up. It is about 16" in this configuration.

MeFoto in action

So, what do I think about this tripod?
So far, so good. It is easy to set up in the field, light and unobtrusive, with legs that can be adjusted to two angles. It is small enough to fit in the outside "water bottle" pocket on my daypack, yet it is sturdy enough to support my DSLR with a 70-300mm telephoto zoom. By nature of it being light, it won't withstand heavy winds. That being said, MeFoto did include a hook on the center column from which you can hang a weight to help steady the tripod in those conditions. It is probably not a good tripod for someone who takes very heavy gear - although heavy gear and hiking typically don't play nicely together anyway.
As for durability, I can't comment because I have only had this tripod for about a month now. I will go back and update this review as needed.


The main issue I have had so far with this tripod is that the panning knob (allows you to turn the entire ballhead) gets jammed. Usually it gets jammed in the "loose" position, which is annoying because then I cannot tighten down the tripod. So far, I have been able to unjam the knob on my own with pliers. I'll update this as needed.

So, what do you think? What is your favorite travel tripod - or do you skip carrying one altogether while out and about?

Carry on, lovely hikers! Make sure to subscribe here and also follow me on instagram @rhandthebeast to see the rest of the photos!


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