Our Guides

THE BEST GUIDES IN THE BUSINESS

A great trek starts with having great guides and we think ours are the best in the business. Along with their professional qualifications and our own in-depth training, Trek Larapinta guides all have that something special, that thing you can’t learn from a book or in a classroom – passion.

 

Our guides are an eclectic bunch of beautiful people who love to share their wilderness experience and knowledge, creating inspiring trekking journeys for our treasured guests.

BRAD DEAN
Field Operations/Senior Guide

Brad brings a passion and understanding of the Australian wilderness to his tours that’s been developed from many years leading some of the toughest treks in Tasmania and the Northern Territory. His qualifications in eco-tourism and remote wilderness first aid ensure a safe and professionally managed trek; his enthusiasm and love of the bush guarantees the trip of a lifetime. When he isn’t leading treks for us you will find Brad exploring the deepest most remote wilderness regions he can find. A truly inspirational guide and an awesome bloke.

KATE BROWN
Senior Guide

Kate is a country girl with a corporate city life background, well that was until she discovered her love of trekking in the Andes. With a Certificate IV in Outdoor Recreation and remote wilderness first aid qualifications, Kate has led an impressive resume of treks in the Northern Territory, South Australia, Tasmania, Nepal and New Zealand for nearly the last decade. A senior Larapinta Trail specialist with a beautiful nature, extraordinary knowledge and leadership skills, Kate always delivers an exceptional wilderness experience.

ANN GRAY
Senior Guide

Ann has been a trekking guide for over 10 years, specialising in the Larapinta Trail and the island paradise of Tasmania with one of her favourite personal walking destinations being Nepal. When not leading treks, Ann enjoys bird watching, botany, mountain biking, rafting and discovering remote geological formations. In between treks in Nepal, Ann has enjoyed spending time volunteering on community projects. With a Certificate III in Eco-Tourism, Certificate IV in Outdoor Recreation and remote wilderness first aid qualifications, Ann is one of our most experienced senior guides, bringing a great sense of humour along with a deep knowledge and passion to her treks.

STEVE TRUDGEON
Senior Guide

Steve is a very experienced and enthusiastic bushwalker and paddler with over 12 years experience in wilderness guiding across Australia. Steve has explored Kakadu, Arnhem Land, the Kimberleys and Tasmania extensively and led many guided treks in these locations. With a passion for the Top End of Australia, Steve has been instrumental in introducing many people to the magnificent Jatbula Trail and Kakadu regions. His extensive experience and comprehensive knowledge of Australian flora and fauna, combined with his profound understanding of indigenous culture; make him a much respected and valued member of our team. Steve holds a Certificate IV in Outdoor Recreation and has remote area first aid wilderness qualifications.

STELLA THOMAS
Guide

Blessed with a confident and outgoing personality along with tertiary qualifications in Geography (Conservation Management/Botany) and Wilderness First Aid, Stella is passionate about the conservation of natural areas. A fanatical botanist, she can talk about plants until the early hours. Her hiking obsession has taken her to the Himalayas, Black Sea coast, North America, New Zealand and to many remote corners of Tasmania and mainland Australia. As a child growing up in a remote region of the Northern Territory, she was infused with a deep appreciation for this wild and beautiful part of Australia. Stella calls the Larapinta Trail home in the winter, whilst also completing specialised treks in some of our other destinations including Kangaroo Island and the Walls of Jerusalem in Tasmania.

JOEL KOVACS
Guide

Joel is blessed with an infectious friendly nature and a passion for the outdoors. His explorations have seen him trekking in Patagonia, New Zealand, Nepal, India, Tasmania and on the Larapinta Trail. With a Certificate IV in Outdoor Recreation and remote wilderness first aid qualifications, Joel is a professional wilderness trekking guide who brings bundles of enthusiasm and knowledge to all the treks he leads. When not working as a guide Joel takes to rock-climbing and some would say he is enthusiastic to say the least.

BEN AULBY
Guide

A native of Tasmania, Ben grew up in the foothills of Mt Wellington, where he spent his formative years exploring the wilderness and developing a passion for the outdoors. The past few years have seen him guiding treks in Tasmania, the Northern Territory and Victoria. A professional trekking guide with remote wilderness first aid qualifications and a love of nature, Ben is a great asset to our Trek Larapinta team.

JACOB ROBINSON
Guide

Jacob is a native Tasmanian with a passion for remote trekking adventures. Having guided on some of our challenging treks for the past 5 years, including the remote South Coast Track and End to End Larapinta Treks, Jacob brings a calm and reassuring nature to our treks with his unique guiding style. Gifted with hidden musical talents, Jacob will bring to life your wilderness trekking experience and guarantee a special walking holiday experience each time.

HAYLEY KINGSLEY
Guide

Hayley grew up in the Dandenong Ranges in a little town called Belgrave, loving the outdoors and adventuring with family and friends. After graduating from high school she spent the next three years travelling and studying psychology, but decided that it wasn't for her and that adventures could be sought through work and play. With a Diploma of Outdoor Recreation and Leaders Wilderness First Aid qualifications, Hayley made her way to the Larapinta Trail through a study placement four years ago, and fell in love with the rugged beauty of the West MacDonnell Ranges. A guiding professional with a love of being ‘out there’, Hayley brings experience and passion to every trek she leads.

JOHANNA McCORMACK
Guide

Jo brings loads of positivity to the Trek Tours Australia team with many years of industry experience and a passion for sharing wilderness trekking adventures. With a Certificate III and IV in Tour Guiding and Outdoor Recreation along with Wilderness First Aid qualifications, Jo is an outdoor guiding professional. Blessed with an engaging, friendly nature all of Jo's guests enjoy an insightful and informative experience when walking in the places that Jo treasures.

WARRICK DANIEL
Guide

Warrick is a native Tasmanian who cut his teeth on some of the hardest treks the Apple Isle has to offer. With Outdoor Recreation/Tour Guide and International White Water certifications combined with his Wilderness First Aid, Warrick is a professional, passionate, yet easy-going wilderness guide. A self-confessed hard-core bird spotter with many years guiding on the Larapinta Trail, Warrick is an integral part of our Trek Tours Australia team.

DAN KEYS
Guide

Dan is a Kiwi born adventure seeker with a passion for taking the path less travelled - ``a camp fire under the stars with a guitar and good company is my idea of a great night out. The past 8 years have been spent traveling the globe leading world class trekking expeditions throughout Australia, New Zealand and Nepal. Good planets are hard to come by, so lets enjoy what ours has to offer!``

JOSH MORETON
Guide

Originally from the beautiful New Zealand, With a degree in Outdoor Education and Leaders Wilderness First Aid qualifications, Josh has a passion for taking people out bush. A rural upbringing in NZ helped him to feel comfortable taking people into remote locations. He started his guiding career in Australia's Northern Territory and has been answering the call of the outback ever since. A guiding professional with a love of the environment and indigenous culture, 2017 will be Josh’s 6th season guiding on the Larapinta and the Top End, on the Jatbula Trail and Kakadu treks. When he isn’t guiding treks (and sometimes when he is) Josh loves to cook, climb and take inspiring photographs.

LAUREN BURKE
Guide

Lauren grew up on Sydney's northern beaches before studying Environmental Science and Geography at Macquarie and Tasmania Universities. She spent several years community campaigning on climate change in Hobart, but realised that understanding the natural world and its systems all starts with getting people outside and developing an intimate connection with what's around us. Lauren completed her Certificate III in Outdoor Recreation and Certificate IV in Adventure Guiding in 2014, along with Wilderness First Aid qualifications - before commencing her wilderness guiding career on the Overland Track and the Freycinet Peninsula. Joining us for her first year on the Larapinta Trail, Lauren is keen to share her passion for the outdoors whilst creating magical moments for her guests.

ROB SHAW
Guide

Rob is a storytelling guide originally from Tasmania where he has spent the last seven years dividing his time between guiding in the wilderness and working with young people in the class room. Raised in remote North Queensland, he has a love of Australia's wild places and sharing stories about their rich natural and cultural histories. A master story teller, Rob has Leadership First Aid qualifications and brings experience both from his background as a science teacher and his love for bushwalking and rock climbing to ensure a safe, enjoyable and memorable trekking experience.

ASHLEY KESTLE
Guide

Ashley hails from country South Australia with a raft of experience from her years as a National Park Ranger. Ashley has been fortunate to work on Kangaroo Island, along sections of the Heysen Trail and in various other remote wilderness locations, which have only deepened her connection and passion for the outdoors. Armed with a Bachelor’s Degree in Science (Natural Resources), First Aid qualifications and a love of exploring, Ash returns this season for guiding adventure on the Larapinta Trail and in her beautiful home state of South Australia. Providing an awe-inspiring journey on the trail by allowing guests to unwind and helping to deepen their appreciation and understanding of the natural environment, is what Ashley is all about.

BENNI BUCHINGER
Guide

Benni is what we call an enthusiastic, hardworking and generous outdoor guide. Always smiling and with an eye for detail when it comes to customer service, Benni balances guiding remote expeditions treks in his home state of Tasmania with the beautiful Red Centre and the Larapinta Trail. Benni holds a certificate 3 in Guiding together with Wilderness First Aid qualifications. He has a keen interest in fine native wood carpentry and ecofriendly waste management solutions which partners well with our companies ecotourism philosophy.

DECLAN HUNN
Guide

Declan has always had an interest in bushwalking from growing up in his native Tasmania. Since gaining his Eco-Tourism and Wilderness First Aid qualifications in 2013, Declan has been guiding on famous trails such as the Overland Track and the Larapinta Trail. It’s this passion for the Australian wilderness, combined with years of outdoor expedition experience which creates wonderful trekking holidays for our guests.

KIATA RYAN
Guide

Kia holds a Bachelor of Education and Wilderness First Aid qualifications and a generous, fun outlook on life, which contributes to making walking experiences with Trek Tours Australia special. She loves to travel and enjoys exploring new hikes in other countries and getting into the water at every opportunity. Kia has a passion for sharing wonderful wilderness adventures with others, in a supportive, fun and professional manner.

EVE WOODS
Guide

Eve comes from Adelaide South Australia and has just completed a double diploma in Outdoor Recreation and Tourism, along with wilderness first aid qualifications. Her passion for the outdoors has taken her to Canada, New Zealand and Japan and she has spent extensive time exploring South Australia, including the Flinders Ranges and Kangaroo Island. Her love for the Northern Territory started when she joined us on the Larapinta Trail while on work experience in 2015 and 2016 and couldn't wait to come back once finishing her studies. Eve is new to guiding but comes with a huge passion for the natural Australian environment and is keen to create a memorable experience for her guests.

MORGAN HARDING
Guide

Morgan is a native Tasmanian having grown up with a love of the great outdoors, enjoying bushwalking and rock climbing. She has a passion for introducing people to the bush where they can find a place to disconnect from busy life, be curious and be challenged. This is reflected in her work with Launceston College where she guides 16-18 year olds on multiday bushwalks in the Tasmanian wilderness. Morgan has Wilderness First Aid and navigation qualifications. She is also currently study a Bachelor of Environmental Science at the University of Tasmania. Morgan looks forward to exploring the Larapinta Trail and sharing her love of the bush and wilderness with you this winter.

ROBERT BASTICK
Guide

Rob is an easy-going character with a passion for the outdoors. Growing up in Tassie meant that he was never too far away from experiences in the outdoors. After completing high school Rob spent 9 months living in England and Holland and traveling around Europe to broaden his horizons. In his spare time, you can find Rob bushwalking in Tassie’s remote wilderness, rock climbing or mountain bike riding. Rob comes to us with a bachelor of education with a minor in Outdoor Education. He is a firm believer in learning through experience and is keen to share is passion and experiences with you.

Deanella Mack

Cultural Connections NT is a leading force in raising cultural awareness. Deanella Mack is a local Arrernte woman who was born and raised in Alice Springs.  Standley Chasm/Angkerle Atwatye is part of her dreaming and connection to country and where she lives with her family. She works with organisations, businesses, groups, and individuals to deliver a wide range of cultural services.

Having lived and worked in Alice Springs all her life, Deanella has gained a wealth of experience and knowledge that will benefit those who are wanting to gain some insight into local culture, or for business and organisations that are working towards delivering culturally appropriate services within the region.

Armed with a Certificate IV in Training and Assessment and studies towards a Bachelor of Psychological Science, Deanella brings a fresh and modern day perspective to cultural awareness training and support.  She is approachable, articulate and loves sharing her knowledge in order to facilitate understanding across cultures, considering herself to be a ‘Facilitator of Understanding’.

Trek Larapinta and Cultural Connections are entering their 3rd year of working together to deliver Cultural Conversation insights for our 6 day, 9 day and 16 day End to End groups.

For more information or to contact Deanella visit her website – www.culturalconnections.com.au