My Xmas present to me was going to be a Manfrotto 190 carbon fibre tripod and Acratech ballhead, but when I went into the store on Friday, they had no more of the 190s left. The salesman was good (or savvy) enough to offer to let me bring home the 3-section 055 to play with pending arrival of the next shipment of 190s and I really love it, but think it is probably too much for my needs. Portability is a big priority for me as I want to be able to carry it hiking, biking and possibly even cross-country skiing and the 055 is quite a bit bulkier and a pound heavier (not to mention half the cost of a Speedlight 700 more expensive). The one question mark in my mind is whether at some point I might find myself wanting to exceed the 5 kg weight limit of the 190. My current kit (camera body, telephoto and ballhead) add up to just 1.6 kg, so it is hard to imagine how I would get up myself up past 5. Is my imagination lacking? How much should I factor in for ballast in a strong wind? Has anyone gone for the 190 and wished they had got the 055?
I'd be grateful for any guidance you can give me.