Wild Guide

NEIL DAMPIER

- Guiding in the safari industry since 2001

- Wildlife photographer extraordinaire

- Graduate & lecturer in Virgina Tech's masters program through their Center for Leadership in Global Sustainability   

- Maestro in USA parks & forestry wilderness areas (based on East Coast for much of the year)

- Passion for environmental education as a channel for social & self development

Born & raised in South Africa’s Eastern Cape, I spent as much time as possible outdoors and was fortunate to be exposed to wild places & creatures at a young age. These childhood experiences instilled in me a lifelong curiosity and passion for wildlife & wilderness.  After completing my university studies, I joined Rob as a guide at the renowned MalaMala Game Reserve. There, with the number of incredible wildlife interactions I was exposed to daily, I was drawn to the creative outlet that photography provided me - with its potential to communicate my fascination with nature to a greater audience.  It was a passion that has continued to grow & follow me around the globe. 

 

An unexpected opportunity saw me leave African shores to spend several years as first mate & thereafter as captain aboard a private expedition mega-yacht. This afforded me the opportunity to lead trips to explore exotic far-flung locations. After a short stint in the corporate world I subsequently spent several years working in leadership roles in non-profit organizations with a focus on conservation & education. This included national park restoration in Mozambique, where I continued to guide as a specialist private guide. 

 

Today I get to combine my diverse experiences & knowledge as a photographic guide, conservationist & educator to create unique travel experiences; connecting people to nature, culture &, ultimately, themselves.  In hosting authentic, transformative wilderness experiences, my hope is to offer people a different perspective on the natural world around them & instill the desire to conserve it.  This is further enhanced through my work to assist my guests with their own photographic documentation of their experiences.  I feel that the change of perspective that photographic technology provides today becomes a lasting transformational tool. 

 

When not out in the wilds exploring, I teach graduate classes in sustainability at Virginia Tech’s Center for Leadership in Global Sustainability, or am otherwise found photographing, running trails and generally enjoying life. 

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