We have the pleasure of announcing the winners of the Great Walks Wilderness Photographer of the Year 2023, presented by Mountain Designs.
We received almost 500 entries and we want to thank each and every person who entered. Of course, in the end there can only be a few winners – in our case four. Best Photo and Runner-Up in the two categories – People and Places – and you’ll shortly see all four winners plus the next top eight images from each category, making a total of 20 images.
Congrats to all top 10 finalists from each category but a special congrats to the winning entries!
Of course, this comp couldn’t work without our amazing sponsors, so thank you so much to the good people at Mountain Designs (mountaindesigns.com), Life’s An Adventure (lifesanadventure.com.au) and GME (gme.net.au), and a special thank you for the prizes they have provided which includes a full outdoor gear makeover for two people, a luxury guided walk for two people and two personal locator beacons.
Thank you too to our amazingly talented judges for their time and expertise: Jackie Ranken, Matt Palmer, Mieke Boynton, Harrison Candlin, Mike O’Connor and Brent McKean.
You can view the Top 10 images in each category below or see all the entries from the competition here. You can also see our Wilderness Photographer of the Year wrap in the February-March 2024 issue of Great Walks. It's in newsstands at the end of the month and available digitally on zinio.com/au.
Wilderness Photographer of the Year 2024 will open for entries again in April 2024. We look forward to seeing your fantastic photos!
And without further ado the winners of the Great Walks Wilderness Photographer of the Year presented by Mountain Designs are...
Winner, People category and Overall Winner Wilderness Photographer of the Year 2023
Judge’s comment: "Every so often you see a photo that simply takes your breath away. There's a wonderful sense of scale in Craig's photo of America's iconic Yosemite Valley. No doubt this is a popular spot for people to have their photo taken but there are several elements that makes this image stand out. The light firstly, the sun's rays behind the silhouette of the people gives them that extra definition even though the two figures are quite small in the frame. The cloud cover adds to the drama as does the vast emptiness just a couple metres in front of the subjects. This is what our Wilderness Photographer of the Year is all about." – Brent McKean.
Runner-Up, People category Wilderness Photographer of the Year 2023
Judge’s comment: "This image fills me with a sense of accomplishment and human brilliance. My eyes move slowly from left to right, through the layers of distant cloud until I see a small person on the side of a mountain. That one element brings all context together and forms an image of beautiful depth." – Harrison Candlin.
Michael has won $500 and a one-year subscription to Great Walks.
Winner, Places category Wilderness Photographer of the Year 2023
Judge’s comment: “I am captivated by the sophisticated use of colour, hues and tones. The warm-toned foreground rocks anchor my eye. From there my eyes move to the wet, leg-like cross made of logs and then up through the winding stream to the beautifully tree-framed waterfall where the colour tones become cooler and softer hues.” – Jackie Ranken.
Evan has won a full Mountain Designs outdoor gear makeover, a GME Personal Locator Beacon, $2,000 prize money and a one-year subscription to Great Walks. Total value: $3,900.
Runner-Up, Places category Wilderness Photographer of the Year 2023
Judge's comment: "Shaun Pau’s Ancient Garden ticks just about every box you could want in a great landscape shot – beautiful light, strong, deliberate framing, an amazing sense of depth, a deft understanding of light and shadow, and of course the subject itself – the kind of location that landscape photographers dream of capturing. The result is a deserving runner-up in Wilderness Photographer of the Year." – Mike O'Connor.
Shaun has won $500 and a one-year subscription to Great Walks.
Top 10 entries, People category Wilderness Photographer of the Year 2023
Top 10 entries, Places category Wilderness Photographer of the Year 2023