the dave fisher memorial award winner 2017 2018

Our Best Photos of New Zealand from 2017-2018

June 2018 | By Jamie Kuek

4 minute read

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At New Zealand Trails we've just wrapped up our 2017-2018  season - and what a season it was! We believe in using real photos of real trips (we don't like using stock photography), so this season we ran a photo competition for our super-guides, to get the absolute best photos New Zealand has to offer.

All these photos were taken by our guides on trips during our 2017-2018 season, no set, no models, no professional photographers... just awesome photos of what New Zealand has to offer!

The categories were:

  1. Wildlife Encounter
  2. Guides Guiding
  3. Panorama
  4. New Zealand Trails Clothing
  5. Landscape with People
  6. Paul's Brief - Food and Drink
  7. Special Moment
  8. People Achieving Something Awesome
  9. Smiling Faces
  10. Selfies
  11. Best of the Season

It was a difficult job choosing a winner from the 50,000 fantastic images that came in, but here they are!

1. Wildlife Encounter

Winner: Courtney Kerin

New Zealand is renowned for its unique wildlife, so it's not difficult to imagine how busy and competitive this category was! In the end it was Courtney who won with this fabulous close-up of a young Kea; our photographer Paul says she'd had many attempts with the cheeky birds before finally nailing this shot.

wildlife encounter

2. Guides Guiding

Winner: Courtney Kerin

There's so much more to guiding than simply walking the walks, and we asked our super-guides to demonstrate! The winner of this category is Courtney, capturing a great shot of Shona in a teaching moment with her group.

guides guiding

3. Panorama

Winner: Libby Clifton

The focus of this category was not to take long, skinny panoramas, but to use the technology to enhance a fantastic photo opportunity. With spectacular scenery at every corner of our trips, you can imagine this was a huge category! We reckon this lunchtime shot at Sealy Tarns, courtesy of Libby, was a clear winner. You can visit this amazing spot on the Masterpiece, or hike even further along the track to Mueller Hut for an extra challenge on the Kiwi Classic.

panorama

4. New Zealand Trails Clothing

Winner: Josh Sullivan

Super-guide Josh led the charge and got super creative with the New Zealand Trails Clothing category, bringing our magazine with him on our most exciting walks along with a supply of our caps. We thought this was the most creative of the lot! If you'd like your own magazine, you can get one for free here.

use of nzt clothing 

5. Landscape with People

Winner: Amanda Bithell

New Zealand is beautiful. Needless to say, the Landscapes with People category was the largest and one of the most difficult to judge. In the end, super-guide Amanda won with this spectacular shot of Sealy Tarns, which you can visit too on the Masterpiece.

landscape with people

6. Food and Drink (Paul's Brief)

Winner: Courtney Kerin

Our Photographer, Paul, had a brief of his own. He asked our super-guides to take photos of the food and drink they prepare for our guests, in awesome places. This shot by Courtney captured the spirit of New Zealand Trails - Andrew preparing hot cups of tea and coffee for guests at the end of a hike.

pauls photoshop request

7. Special Moment

Winner: Kim Mackay-Wallace

The Special Moments category was all about capturing a little bit of New Zealand Trails magic. Naturally, we had plenty of photos to choose from here! The competition was tough, but we thought Kim's shot of her group enjoying the hot tub at Ohau was marvellous. We visit Ohau Quarters on the Masterpiece, Kiwi Classic and Short South trips.

special moment

8. People Achieving Something Awesome

Winner: Josh Sullivan

New Zealand Trails isn't about pushing the envelope, but rather, yourself! Our guests return home with new personal achievements ticked off the list and plenty to tell everybody about. Josh snapped his group mastering a river crossing with guide Jasmine (far right).

people achieving something awesome

9. Smiling Faces

Winner: Courtney Kerin

We deliver moments of pure joy! With so many happy faces to choose from, this was a difficult category to judge. In the end, these wonderful smiles from a World Heritage Walking Tour (with their prize in the Hooker Valley) captured our hearts. An awesome photo by Courtney.

smiling faces

10. Selfies

Winner: Sam Harris

Some of our guests like to go the extra mile and explore glaciers while we visit Mt Cook (available on all of our South Island trips). Our guide Sam was pretty thrilled to be on board such a trip, and took this sweet as selfie!

Selfies

11. Best of the Season

Winner: Courtney Kerin

This year, our guides went above and beyond to get the most awesome photos possible of our epic trips. The submissions for this particular award were all absolute stunners, a testament to the skills of our super-guides, but we believe Courtney's photo by Hooker Lake captures everything we stand for: beautiful places, happy people, magic moments. Well done Courtney, you deserve this!

the dave fisher memorial award winner 2017 2019

These are just the winners of the Guide Photo Competition, the very best of the tens of thousands of trip photos our super-guides took throughout the season. The are plenty more over in our trip galleries, and on our Facebook page!

Come and join the fun; you can see which of our trips is right for you with this handy comparison page, or if you're already sure which one you'd enjoy the most, you can check the next season's availability to get booking!

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