The nifty fifty is a favourite for many for sure, but I'm really glad Nikon makes an inexpensive 35mm f/1.8 - the 50 requires you to be pretty far back to get the shot on a crop, which can be tough in a lot of situations. Not sure if Canon has an equivalent.
And I echo what many have already said - if you want good action shots in the forest, a prime lens in the 1.4 or 1.8 range is the only way to go.
Interesting… you can get $30 adaptors to run Nikon glass on Canon bodies. Autofocus doesn't work, but with the shallow depth of field on fast primes, you are using manual focus anyways. I am very tempted to try out
I am just starting to get my collection going. Got a T1i with 18-55 kit lens. Manfrotto fluid head tripod. 50mm f/1.8. It seems like primes are the way to go for low light filming and action photography.
The 50mm is pretty tight. You end up filming tight, getting hands and helmet, or tires and roosts. Or, it forces you to move back, well off trail, getting some cool shots with foreground filter of ferns, vine maples, decomposing logs, and whatnot.
I find 50mm works for about 50% of the shots I want. 30% I would like a wider prime, with no distortion, like the 30mm. 15% I would like even wider, with distortion, the make dorps look hella big and tight corners look even tighter. 5% of the time I would like a longer lens, for ridgeline shots, and long shots where the rider is coming directly toward the camera for awhile.
This guy makes a ton of helpful youtube videos.
Crop Sensor focal length demo 11mm to 85mm
medium 50mm primes: Canon 1.8 $120, 1.4 $380, 1.2L $1500.
Battle of the Fast 50mm's: Canon f/1.8 vs f/1.4 vs f/1.2
Canon 24mm 1.4 $1630 v.s. Sigma 24mm 1.8 $540 v.s. Canon 28mm 1.8 $470
Canon 35mm f1.4 $1380 v.s. Sigma 30mm $490
Canon 35mm 2.0 $330. Nikon 35mm 1.8 $195 + $30 adaptor.
Sigma seems like the best option, the Nikon is a tempting budget option.
Tokina 11-18 2.8 $700. Rokinon 14mm 2.8 $400
Canon 85mm 1.2 $2050 v.s. Canon 85mm 1.8 $389 v.s. Nikon Nikkor 85mm 2.0 [HTML_REMOVED]$100 used + $30 adaptor
This is what I want to put in my bag. I'm cheap :P
canon 50mm 1.8 $120
nikon 35mm 1.8 $225
rokinon 14mm 2.8 $400
nikon 85mm 2.0 $120