Having grown up in a small country community with amazing family and friends I learnt about hunting from a young age. Dad carried me in his pack when I was 3 years old.
As I proceeded through life with primary, secondary school and university any spare time I had was out in the hills hunting.
I remember thinking at a young age that I would love to work as a hunting guide.
After university my O.E kind of happened but not a massive one at all. I headed to Sydney with a mate but there was bugger all hunting so I only lasted 6 months. As Sydney is such a big city with minimal hunting, fishing, and outdoor opportunities the lure of being able to do any of these things in New Zealand drew me home.
Upon returning to little old NZ I was offered a carpentry apprenticeship which I grabbed with both hands and was determined to get a trade behind m, as then I would have something to fall back on when I wasn’t hunting. After finishing my trade in 4 years Australia beckoned once again. The money of the mines in Western Australia was being talked about in NZ. So, I jumped on the bandwagon expecting big things. (Never expect big things in the mines). Arriving in Kalgoorlie I did not have a clue what I had just got myself into. Having only seen Kalgoorlie cops on TV it sure was an eye opener after a few days in Kal. I had taken a job on an exploratory drill rig travelling around Australia drilling holes in the ground to see what mineral deposits were present, so the mining companies could see if it was viable to mine the areas. Sounds like a breeze, right? WRONG!
This job shaped how I now view my life and the work I do. (Seriously) Working in extreme conditions Mentally, Physically and Climate. To say this job nearly broke me would be an understatement. The first 2 weeks the skin on my hands and feet went through an ordeal on their own. Steel caps in 45-degree Celsius heat on iron sand is not good for your feet and my carpenter’s hands underwent an outback boot camp. Sleeping was not an issue after work and sometimes during work. Eating was however as my hands being so sore, holding the utensils was not easy and the heat of the Northern Territory made me feel too nauseous to eat. Water however, not a problem. Twenty litres a day was not that hard to drink on a big day.
After 3 years of travelling back and fourth between NZ and Australia the lifestyle back home drew me back. Carpentry was still there for me, so I got back into it as well as working towards my dream of being a hunting guide. In my spare time I was hunting and doing courses to increase my knowledge in the hunting field.
That dream came true in 2017 when I launched my guiding business. Just think if I had not chased my dreams would I be happy now?
Find a job you’re passionate about and you will never work another day in your life. Your work becomes your love and life, rather than a job.
Carpentry at the moment is still a part of my life in the off season, but I still have goals to achieve and I am passionate about my future.