Monday, June 15, 2015

Deep in the jungle - Danum Valley conservation area

After leaving the Kinabatangan River lodge we travelled through rubber and palm oil plantations sad to see the retreat of the rain forest

Reaching the palm oil town of Lahad Datu we transferred in a Toyota Hi lux ( thought of you friend Jem he loves hi lux ) for a two hours dusty drive to the Borneo Rainforest lodge crossing and old bridge which we had to walk across as it was not safe to drive the vehicles fully laden .

The lodge is a 50/ 50 venture between the Malaysian Government venture with the private sector. Google the lodge , it is true 5 star . The public rooms, staff, buffet meals and the knowledgeable guides are excellent compared to the ' Salvation Army rest home ' we stayed in when we visited the Batang Ai Lake area.

When I used this description at lunch I got a good laugh from the group, Dan the Tour leader and owner of TOTO Tours remained silent.

Settled in after an excellent buffet lunch meal , we were scheduled to go on a trail walk but ' hughy ' had other ideas , the heavens opened and it rained until about 1800.

After dinner we went on a night drive on the back of an open truck , joined by other guests including Sharon and John from Perth.

On the drive we saw owls, squirrels, deer and other creatures that come out at night, it was very refreshing to be after the storm had cleared. Off to bed at 2200 a very tired lad.

Tesh ( Hawaii ) suggested we do the canopy walk , with out our guide. Steve (NYC ) joined us at 0530 , it was exhilarating to walk above the rainforest canopy, the suspended walk is about 30 metres above the forest floor and is 300 metres long, the mist and clouds were lifting as the sun rose., wonderful just communing with nature like this.

Back for breakfast with the group before we set of at 0800 to trek along the ' Coffin Trail ' which leads to an ancient Kadazan -Dusun burial site. It was a 3km round trip , involving a 40 - minute clime to a magnificent look out point.

Along this very tough walk , we saw centrepeeds, leaches, ants and all the creepy crawlies of the forest , many of us ended up with leeches, thank god for the fashion item - leech socks.

 The walk returned via Fairy Falls which is starting to flow again after the now regular afternoon rains storms. 20 minutes from the lodge .........we heard a cracking sound and looked a loft to see the 'king of the forest ' swinging through the trees , .......a young Orangutan called Jack .

I was to excited to zoom in on him so I gave my ' box brownie ' camera to our guide Theo to video him, check out the blog.

This was a wonderful morning for me the companionship of new friends, succeeding in doing a challenging walk ( trainer Jenny look at my fit bit readings, your help has got me there ) so far today ( 1600) I have walked 14 km.

Continue reading (Incl. Pics) at: Deep in the jungle - Danum Valley conservation area