Mar 28, 2016

Into the Woods ... at the SORR 2016 in Sg Menyala Forest Reserve


Early Saturday morning, my daughter and I woke up early, got ready and met up with my dear blogger pal Misz Ella at McDonalds, Bandar Sri Damansara where I then car pooled with her to go to Port Dickson for the Save Our Rainforest Race (SORR)

After a couple of missed turnings, (and I still cannot comprehend why for once Google Maps seem to fail me... ) we finally found our way to the Sg Menyala Forest Reserve... Fortunately, it seem we were still in time as the Race was just about to start .

PEKA , known as the Pertubuhan Pelindung Khazanah Alam Malaysia (which translates to the Association for the Protection of Natural Heritage of Malaysia) had organized this successful "Save Our Rain Forest Race" which is an annual event held in different forest reserves around Malaysia on a yearly basis and this time, they were holding it at the Sungai Menyala Forest Reserve, Port Dickson...



Just the sight of the trees all lined up on the road to where to flag off for the race was enough to make me sigh in wonder at the beauty of nature...

There were about 2,000 excited participants  for this SORR 2016 which consisted of corporate employees, students from around the country as well as fellow nature lovers as well as those who loved running and were up for a challenge....and it sure was a challenge..  

I did not know where I heard it but I could have sworn I was led to believe that the SORR was just about 3 km... but I was definitely shocked to learn the exact route was actually 15 km..but fortunately we were told to just join in the media trip ...


Kolonel Bersekutu (PA) Puan Sri Datuk Shariffa Sabrina Syed Akil, the President of PEKA , said that the SORR 2016  was organized with the ultimate vision of educating people to be more loving and appreciative towards the natural treasures (khazanah alam) in our country, especially in the tropical rainforest... 


Those who joined the SORR 2016 definitely learned more about the role of the rainforest to humans and our environment...


There was a huge turn out of university students from all over the country and this pleased Puan Sri who said that with the participation of these young people, hopefully more positive impact can be left for future generations in order to better appreciate the natural heritage we have....


There were interesting signage around which reminded us that we should respect nature as it is and when we were in the forest, we should just leave nothing but our footprints...


At about 8.30am, the lovely Puan Sri flagged off all the eager participants, grouped into pairs..


..and into the woods they went....

SORR 2016 is a continuation of a string of successful programs in the past by PEKA Malaysia held before in Hutan Simpan Bukit Tinggi, Chamang, Bentong (2013), Hutan Simpan Sungai Besi, Cheras (2014) and Hutan Lipur Kuala Woh, Tapah (2015)....


All participants were required to walk or run or trek the 15 km trail given and stop at 7 different check points to complete the task given to them before they could get their 'passports' stamped and continue the race...

Yours truly here, along with other members of the media took the short cut way which was also quite a challenge for us... as we were dropped off  at Check Point 4, which was where participants had to do some weaving exercise using screwpine leaves before being able to move forward... 

We had to hike/trek back to Check Point 3 where the tree planting exercise was being done....which was about 400-500 metres away over uneven ground filled with many logs and tree trunks...


Each pair of the participants were given a Keruing or Meranti sapling where they were suppose to plant according to their bib number and  at the allocated spot....


They had to tear off the polybag and then put the sapling into the ready made hole in the soil and cover the hole properly...



After Checkpoint 3 was done, we then headed back to Check Point 4 where the weaving activity was going on....


There you have it... at Check Point 4 the participants had to do a simple weave using the screwpine leaves provided....


... they were assisted by some of the Orang Asli weavers.....


Our journey continued from Check Point 4 to Check Point 5 through forest areas, places with less trees (thus, less shade) and more sun (oh dear... it is soooooo hot... especially with the El Nino situation going on - another reason why we need more trees!!!!), but we could stop for some water at the various water stations around to re-hydrate ourselves...The walk (yeah, it's a walk since there is no more uneven ground with tree roots and logs all over) also took us into some abandoned palm oil plantation...


...and we arrived at Check Point 5 which is the Orang Asli Bukit Kepong settlement.. but boy, oh boy... It definitely was far different from what I expected....For my foreign friends Orang Asli is aboriginal people/indigenous people...


This was what I expected and hoped... ok.... I am way out of line...sorry...but I think these tree houses are just so gorgeous too don't you think... by the way this picture belongs to another blogger friend, Wilson (www.placesandfood.com


This little village was really colourful and very picturesque.... Heck, I won't mind settling here and living the simple life here myself.... it is just soooo pretty....there are so many lovely flowers and the place is soooooo clean...even cleaner then my housing area...


And I found out that this Orang Asli settlement is actually the 2nd most beautiful in Malaysia....


OK, what the participants of the SORR 2016 have to do was to check in and pick up some necessities from the tent there... there were bottles of soy sauce , bags of rice, packets of flour, sugar etc...etc which were numbered ..


...and the participants had to deliver these items to the house with the same number...


I could not resist a picture of this adorable little Orang Asli kid who was looking out in curiosity from the Budimas library there.. Isn't she adorable...


Once done, you get your passport stamped and you can be on your way..... Now this was where we got a bit worried as the distance from Check Point 5 to Check Point 6 would be about 5 km... and we had like just half an hour left... Our 'tour guide', one of Puan Sri's staff there then enlisted one of the Marshalls who was making his rounds to send us to Check Point 6 much to our relief....

My daughter was thrilled to be able to sit at the back of the Hilux and enjoy the roller coaster ride....


We arrived at Check Point 6 where there were army trucks there on standby to ferry any participants who were still walking or running by 1.30pm back to the starting /ending point...


..and since we had some time, we walked to the activity area some 500-600 metres away from the main road and my daughter enjoyed her walk in the oil palm plantation, only complaining of the stench from some half opened sacks of manure...


Check Point 6 was where participants had to find 8 pieces of puzzles and combine them together to make the SORR logo


A mother and son team... I am very impressed... this kid has been following his mom and have successfully completed at very least 10km of the race with 5 more to go... He is only 7 years old but looks like a very intelligent boy!!!

Anyway, after checking out the Check Point 6 and taking a few pics, all of us walked back to the main road where we were to meet up with the van to bring us back to the starting point/ main stage..

Even with just a short distance, we were exhausted and were glad to be able to tuck into our lunch and have our nice cool refreshments.... which were all kindly sponsored by Concorde Hotels and Resorts....
  

The event was enlivened up by several local celebrities also dubbed Friends of SORR who also gave away the prizes to the winners.... 


They were Johan Raja Lawak and his wife, Ozlynn, Najwa, Imelda Haris, and a few others  who also participated in planting the trees in the Sungai Menyala Forest Reserve....



Among those who attended was also En Norshazlee bin Roslee, the Assistant Director of Forest and State Park, Negeri Sembilan Forestry Department.



Congratulations to the winners.... it was not easy getting to the finishing line as the winners confessed too... among the main challenges faced was the humidity they had to go through with the heatwave going on...


Thanks to PEKA for having me, it sure was a great experience for my daughter and me which we learned a few things as well as enjoyed... 
  

Trees are an important part of every community.  Trees increase our quality of life by bringing natural elements and wildlife habitats into urban settings. We gather under the cool shade they provide during outdoor activities with family and friends.

Trees contribute to their environment by providing oxygen, improving air quality, conserving water, preserving soil, and supporting wildlife. During the process of photosynthesis, trees take in carbon dioxide and produce the oxygen we breathe.

One acre of forest absorbs six tons of carbon dioxide and puts out four tons of oxygen. This is enough to meet the annual needs of 18 people. Did you know trees also filter air by removing dust and absorbing other pollutants like carbon monoxide, sulfur dioxide and nitrogen dioxide. After the trees have intercepted these unhealthy particles, the rain washes them to the ground.

Trees control climate by moderating the effects of the sun, rain and wind. Leaves absorb and filter the sun's radiant energy, keeping things cool. Trees also preserve warmth by providing a screen from harsh wind. In addition to influencing wind speed and direction, they also protect us from rain.

Trees can lower the air temperature and reduce the heat intensity of the greenhouse effect by maintaining low levels of carbon dioxide. Far reaching roots hold soil in place and fight erosion. Trees absorb and store rainwater which reduce runoff and sediment deposit after storms. This helps the ground water supply recharge, prevents the transport of chemicals into streams and prevents flooding. Fallen leaves make excellent compost that enriches soil.

Many animals, including elephants, koalas and giraffes eat leaves for nourishment. Flowers are eaten by monkeys, and nectar is a favorite of birds, bats and many insects. Animals also eat much of the same fruit that we enjoy This process helps disperse seeds over great distances. Of course, hundreds of living creatures call trees their home. Leaf-covered branches keep many animals, such as birds and squirrels, out of the reach of predators.

So let us support PEKA and mother nature. Save our trees and plant more trees for our future generation.. We do not need more buildings or malls .. we need more trees.. because without trees, we have nothing as well...

To know more about PEKA , pls visit www.facebook.com/PEKAMALAYSIA

http://www.pekamalaysia.org/




17 comments:

  1. These events should be organized more often! Especially in the city..

    ReplyDelete
  2. You have such an active and healthy lifestyle. Totally inspiring!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks Eve, but I am just beginning... I have been a fat lazy bum for too long.. LOL

      Delete
  3. I dah pergi sini ! Memang menarik, memang stress relieved looked at jungle. tapi sis miera lagi best pergi puna da aktiviti, time I pergi just walked in je. Tak pe la as long as dapat pergi jungle feel awesome dah ! ;)

    ReplyDelete
  4. I need to join this kind of activity once in a while! fun and healthy!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. exactly... as well as do your part and help save mother nature so we can do more of this in years to come...

      Delete
  5. woah! such an adventurous and fun activity! I missed jungle trekking :(

    ReplyDelete
  6. I miss jungle trekking. This is a great event.

    ReplyDelete
  7. Nothing beats the feeling of going back to nature. Is this your way of staying fit miera? hehe

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I guess... more or less... lol.. have to get off my fat ass and work it more...

      Delete
  8. When it comes to jungle trekking, I'm the first one to pull out. Lol. My in laws love outdoor activities, so I gotta tell them about this place.

    ReplyDelete
  9. Looks like you had a very adventurous yet healthy morning. I would love to participate in something similar as well.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. yaayyy we should make the effort to participate in more of these kind of activities which are good for us and also learn to appreciate mother nature...

      Delete
  10. so active, i think i'll die halfway. :( that's why you dont see me going for outdoor activities often.

    ReplyDelete
  11. Thanks a lot for sharing this with all of us. Power Data Recovery is a free data recovery software which is a life saver!Hope more people know about this product.

    ReplyDelete
  12. I am very honored to introduce a free date recovery products to you, it is very useful and free,and

    professional technical support.

    ReplyDelete

What do you think of my blog???