GUEST BLOG – Craig Jones Wildlife Photographer
Hello, my name is Craig Jones and I am a professional wildlife photographer from Staffordshire, England. My passion for wildlife has taken me to many wonderful places around the world, where I’ve witnessed some truly amazing moments. I’m an ex soldier, so my kit and how it performs is important to me as well as my physical well-being. The care and preparations I put into both help me cover long distances, whilst carrying large weight bearing gear. I have just come back from the Indonesian island of Sumatra, where I was on a two week trip called Spotlight Sumatra. It was a two week expedition to capture and document the amazing wildlife that lives there. The primary focus on this trip was the Sumatran Orangutans that live there and are critically endangered.
There were no plans as such, just me and my guide trekking through the Gunung Leuser National Park hoping to photograph these great apes. I went there to help the SOS-Sumatran Orangutan Society highlight the plight of this great ape. My aim was to give the orangutans a voice through my images.
I trekked some 20km a day, slept rough and washed in rainwater with bugs as big as golf balls around me. Mosquitoes and leeches were omnipresent throughout my trip. In the past I’ve used many repellents, all containing deet, which marked my clothes and left stains the majority of the time. I even have shirts where the fabric was completely dissolved due to this repellent; these are all deet brands you can buy freely in your local chemist all claiming to repel mosquitoes.
incognito products don’t contain any deet and are 100% made from natural ingredients. So it was with great excitement that I packed the range, which was previous to this trip unknown to me.
I had 2 incognito insect repellent sprays, a Hair & Body wash, Incense Sticks, a Loofah Soap, a Natural Crystal Deodorant and an essential oil. They also sent me a wonderful portable long lasting impregnated mosquito net.
The advice I was given was to start to wash with the Loofah soap a week or so before entering the mosquito area, which I did so before departing for Sumatra. I had a lot going on whilst I was there, travelling around, sleeping rough, washing as mentioned in rain water, generally it was rough camping with extreme heat and humidity.
I washed twice a day with the soap, applied the sprays, lit an incense stick before I got my head down and placed a few spots of the oil on my clothes – and I have to say I was amazed. Everywhere I go abroad I’m bitten, it’s the price you pay and accept. But using these products in this very challenging and tough environment they all performed very well. They gave me these products free to test and I’m not under any contract to say this or that, I’m speaking from my personal experiences.
If something is good and it works then it deserves all the praise it can get, and during those two tough weeks incognito products helped me survive the constant threat of mosquito bites that could have drained me and brought a quick halt to my trip. You have to trust your gear, this is something I live by and work by. Trust is earned, not given and without these amazing products I may not have come home in such great shape bite wise.
I have suffered through dehydration since back home and that was the only slight illness I had coming back from one of the most amazing rainforest habitats anywhere in the world. I not only recommend you use these products but I’d go as far as saying you cannot travel to Mosquito regions without taking some if not all of the products I’ve tested.
I thank everyone at incognito for providing me with such wonderful products, as well as all of your help and support for my trip to Sumatra. I wish you all well, many thanks
[Editors Note: To read more about the trip and see more of Craig’s amazing photos have a look on his blog www.craigjoneswildlifephotography.co.uk By highlighting the endangered nature of orangutans Craig is making a real difference by bringing the issue of animal conservation into the public eye]