UmPhafa, South Africa

In late 2011 I spent two months living and working at UmPhafa Private Nature Reserve, nestled on the edge of the Drakensberg Mountains in Kwa-Zulu Natal, South Africa. Rather than an expedition, at Umphafa I was able to live on the reserve, where they have an ambitious vision to return what was heavily overgrazed farmland to its former beauty, reintroducing and encouraging the return of numerous species along the way.

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On Fences: A uniquely South African approach to conservation

I dream of wide open spaces, the wild places. Africa, I had imagined, would have more than it’s fair share of these..

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10,000 hits and that Monday morning feeling


It’s a Monday morning and I’ve got that all too infrequent Monday morning feeling; excitement..

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Friday Photo: African Plains


A lone tree stands simply on the plains.

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Friday Photo: Verraux’s Eagle

This photo of Verreaux’s Eagle (or The Black Eagle) was taken at Raptor Ridge on the edge of the Drakensberg Mountains. Here, it swooped down..

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Friday Photo #2: The Acacia

The Acacia is perhaps one of the most iconic of African trees, standing tall and proud..

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In the footsteps of a Leopard

Conservation can be a tricky business. One of the best approaches is simply to leave things alone, but unfortunately in many cases, that avenue is simply no longer available..

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Why I’ll be missing Explore


Explore is the annual Royal Geographical Conference on expedition and fieldwork planning. To put it more accurately, it’s a wonderful old building filled with a collection of ordinary individuals, who do extraordinary things..

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11 things I’ve learnt whilst living in South Africa


Living and working at Umphafa Reserve has been a steep learning curve, and great fun. Here’s a few tips I’ve picked up since I arrived..

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