desert walker : explorer : conservationist : photographer
Andrew Harper has been walking and exploring the Australian deserts since 1995 and has journeyed over 15000 kilometres across all of Australia's nine major deserts either as a solo explorer or as leader of commercial camel expeditions with the Outback Camel Company.
In 2007 he founded Australian Desert Expeditions, a Not-For-Profit Registered Environmental Organisation that partners with leading universities and national research institutions to conduct scientific & ecological surveys in the far reaches of the inland deserts. Andrew believes that Australia's long cameleering exploration heritage can successfully partner with modern science to further our ecological knowledge of Australia's great arid wilderness.
A Fellow of the Royal Geographical Society, he has crossed the Simpson Desert - the worlds largest parallel sand ridge desert - 12 times in various directions, the latest solo journey being reconnxpedition, a 35 day, 700 kilometre crossing in 2012.
On Australia Day 2015, he was awarded the Medal of the Order of Australia (OAM), for his service to environmental science, research and adventure tourism.
When not walking deserts, he takes to the water and kayaks the inland rivers and has been actively campaigning for the introduction of a container recycling scheme in NSW. His next 'project' is to gather support to make his home town of Deniliquin a 'plastic bag free' community.
"The desert deserves to be approached gently, so its mood is revealed. The way people have always approached the desert was on foot, as we have done today. That reveals the country - the continuum of country."