Graham’s fascination with nature goes back to childhood, growing up on a smallholding outside Johannesburg and spending holidays with his grandparents on their farms in the arid Karoo and the bushveld of the Limpopo River Valley. Camping holidays in an old Landrover through Botswana and Zimbabwe cemented a real passion for wilderness and wild animals.
After two years without any real direction at university, Graham headed off for a European adventure that included walking in the Dolomites and working on family fishing boats in Greece.
One evening, in a youth hostel, he encountered a group of travellers poring over a map of Africa and realised there is no place like home. Within months of his return, Graham encountered a friend who had heard Dave Varty speak and knew that Dave was looking for rangers for a new game reserve that was opening in KwaZulu-Natal.
Graham was instantly hooked and even though all the positions were filled, he presented himself at Dave’s office but was turned away, his long hair and employed status counting against him. A haircut and a resignation quickly followed before Graham returned to try his luck again. This time he was successful and, less than a week later, he arrived at &Beyond Phinda Private Game Reserve to begin training.
Completing the course, he guided at &Beyond Phinda Mountain Lodge and then managed and guided at Londolozi Tree Camp before moving into ranger training himself. He has long been responsible for passing on his hard-earned knowledge, helping to develop generations of proud &Beyond rangers. Managing &Beyond Inkwazi Ranger Training for eleven years, Graham was responsible for taking &Beyond’s guiding programme to India and more recently to Chile.
Graham oversees the development of guiding and guide training across &Beyond and cites giving young people a helping hand and then watching them grow as a real privilege. He enjoys guiding young rangers in how to share their own interests with guests and finds it fulfilling to constantly inspire both new and experienced rangers to reach their full potential. An &Beyonder with a long legacy, Graham is responsible for imbuing the company’s ethos throughout Africa and beyond.