There are a number of elements that come into play to make a luxury African safari the trip of a lifetime, the guide being a very crucial one.
The gourmet food, stylish accommodation, attentive service and plush surroundings can all be of the highest order, but if the guide falls short in some way then your experience can be somewhat diminished.
On the other hand, if the guide is exceptional then it elevates your whole adventure onto another level and makes it completely unforgettable.
Don't risk going on a luxury African safari with an underwhelming field guide, rather travel with the best, like the one listed below...
1986 TO PRESENT: Guided all over Eastern, Southern and Central Africa, but mostly focused in Eastern Africa.
WHY AND HOW DID YOU BECOME A SAFARI GUIDE?
I was raised as the son of a safari guide and operator and so it was a natural progression for me to follow on with the tradition.
After completing my education at University in Canada, I decided to return home to Africa and continue in the same tradition as my father in the life of a safari guide.
WHAT MAKES A GOOD SAFARI GUIDE?
Knowledge and understanding of wildlife, birdlife, plantlife, insect life, geography, culture, photography and all sorts of other outdoor skills are needed, but are only a part of being a good safari guide.
Also of great importance are social and communication skills, as well as high sense of responsibility and work ethic in looking after your guests.
Favourite animal is certainly the elephant, all time spent in amongst elephants is high quality time. They are such magnificent, gentle, intelligent, family oriented animals, all with such individual personalities.
I like nothing better than sitting quietly in amongst these awe-inspiring animals.
MOST MEMORABLE SIGHTING?
After 30 years of guiding, there are so many fabulous experiences it is impossible to select one.
Is it seeing 10's of thousands of wildebeest struggling to cross the Mara River with crocodiles taking out the stragglers? Is it sitting in amongst 150 magnificent peaceful elephants in Amboseli, or being repeatedly charged by a very protective matriarch elephant in Tsavo?
Or is it being repeatedly charged by a silverback mountain gorilla in the forests of the Virunga Mountains in Rwanda? Or is it being in the forests of the Mahale Mountains on the edge of Lake Tanganyika and witnessing the terrible brutality of chimpanzees hunting and killing colobus monkeys?
They are all memorable and extraordinary sightings and behaviours that I feel privileged to be party to, and I like nothing better than to be sharing these experiences with appreciative guests.
I would say my areas of specialisation are wildlife, mammal behaviour, birdlife, culture and photography.
FAVOURITE CAMPFIRE STORY?
There are so many, it is impossible to elect one. Stories are triggered by events while out on safari that relate to memories of related previous events.