Michael Dyer is a third generation Kenyan, born in Laikipia in 1961. Having completed his education in England and Scotland, he worked as a cowboy in Montana and Australia before returning to take over Borana one of the family properties.
Borana in 1984 was a traditional cattle and sheep ranch, but Michael soon set about rehabilitating the ranch and adjacent wilderness to the pristine and viable eco-system that it is today. Working closely with the Craig family on the Lewa Wildlife Conservancy, he played an instrumental role in developing the award winning Il N’gwesi Group Ranch.
This has been such a huge conservation success that it has been replicated across Northern Kenya under the auspices of the Northern Rangeland Trust.
A founder member of the Laikipia Wildlife Forum, this innovative and creative approach to wildlife and ecosystem management has seen year by year increases in landscape set aside for conservation, with recent large mammal counts showing in excess of 5,500 elephants in the Laikipia – Ewaso Ecosystem.
It is within this wilderness that Michael and his wife Nicky developed Borana Lodge and Laragai House, the bases for their exciting and adventurous riding safaris. Michael is a keen polo player, twice making the national team. He is also a pilot with over 4000 hours of bush flying. Michael and Nicky’s work in conservation and humanitarian issues was globally recognised when they won the Virgin Atlantic Responsible Tourism Award for Poverty Alleviation in 2007. (http://epicquest.com/guides).
We asked Michael to tell us a tale from one of his many adventures around the world and here’s what he said:
“I lost my watch once sliding down sand dunes in Kenya’s Tana Delta region. I never thought that I would ever see that watch again. I even left instructions with the owner of the lodge where we were staying. I asked him to please let me know if anyone found it. Of course i knew there was a remote chance that I would ever see that watch again. 3 years later as I was dropping off my kids at school, a student at the school walked up to me holding a brown envelope and ever so casually said “I have a present for you” and handed me the envelope. And there right inside was my watch! I couldn’t believe it. I gave him the new watch that I had recently bought – can you imagine he found my watch while sliding down the same sand dunes? It was unbelievable!”