Born in Harare, Zimbabwe, exploring nature was part of my everyday life. By the age of 10 my family had an assortment of orphaned wild animals and I was already developing an interest in catching snakes!
This hobby generated my first job and, as soon as I left school, I went to work in Victoria Falls at the snake park there. From snake wrangling to white water rafting to quailifying as a canoeing guide, my guiding career was developing around me without me even being aware.
In the mid 1990s'I moved to Kariba and began serving my guiding apprenticeship, qualifying for my full Zimbabwean Guides Licence in 1998. This licence, even today, is considered one of the most difficult guiding qualifications in Africa, and is an achievement I am extremely proud of.
In 2001 I moved to the great wilderness that is the Selous Game Reserve, in Tanzania where, for the next two years, I managed the Mbuyu Safari Camp. Next up was my first foray into Kenya, working in the Chyulu Hills as a walking guide.
Young and still keen to explore this beautiful continent I was soon on the move again and took up the position of Head Guide at Sausage Tree Camp in Zambia in 2004. Working in the Lower Zambezi National Park, directly opposite Mana Pools, one of my favourite places on the planet, was magical, but I needed a new challenge.
And so I quit Africa, my home, and moved to the U.K to follow my other passion - motorsport photography. I set up my own small media house and spent the next 5 years working as a motorsport photographer and freelance journalist, travelling all across Europe.
In 2009 I travelled back to Kenya for an assignment - my first visit to Africa in 4 years - and moved home less than a year later!
Since then I have been a head guide and camp manager at some of the most beautiful and unique properties in East Africa, dovetailing this with my first love of private guiding - showing people the magic of Africa through my eyes.
on the Zambezi
As a kid growing up in Zimbabwe I was exposed to the bush and wildlife from a very early age. My mum worked closely with the Botanical Gardens in Zimbabwe and nearly every weekend was spent exploring Zimbabwe, collecting orchids. We also became an unofficial orphanage for all sorts of critters - from hyrax to bushpigs and various antelopes. This was also the period during which my love of snakes began to develop... thankfully I had a very patient mother!
Fresh out of high school I moved half way across Zimbabwe to the tourism mecca that is Victoria Falls. I began working as a tour guide and resident herpetologist at the Victoria Falls Snake and Reptile Park. In my spare time I had the chance to try my hand at white water rafting and soon moved into kayaking, both above and below the falls. This incredibly hazardous occupation also ignited a true love of adrenalin - dealing with monster crocodiles and angry hippos upstream and Grade 5 rapids downstream on a regular basis.
From white water to calmer times - I spent the better part of two years canoeing the Lower Zambezi before refocussing my career on qualifying as a walking guide. This entailed working as an apprentice to some of the best guides in Zimbabwe, walking amongst, and leaning the behavioural traits of, all of the big game. If you seek the real African Adventure then try approaching a pride of lions on foot!
Tanzania, Kenya and Zambia
When the problems in Zimbabwe began affecting my mental state I left to look for pastures new - the first stop was the Selous Reserve in Tanzania. This paradise was my home for 2 years before the tragedy of 9/11 devestated tourism in the region.
These two years in one of the most remote reserves in Africa gave me renewed confidence in my abilities and also an incredible amount of memories... such as drifting down the Rufiji River on the back of a dead elephant just so that I could photograph crocodiles feeding on the carcass...
After Tanzania I moved to Kenya as head guide in the Chyulu Hills and then on to Zambia in a similar role on the Lower Zambezi. These were fantastic times but after five years of living out of a suitcase in countries that, whilst very welcoming, were not my home, it was time for a dramatic change...
From 2005 to 2010 I worked across Europe as a freelance motorsport photographer and journalist. Working with some of the top motorsport teams in the World I soon developed a loyal clientele and worked on a whole new skill set. The adrenalin seeking continued, but powerful high speed cars replaced elephants and lions... (thats' me in the ditch on the left side of the photo!)
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