Jun 28, 2011

Sandari Forest Trek Adventure

Summer has ended and typhoons take turns “visiting” our country. Floods to familiar grounds, trees fallen, destruction to agriculture and infrastructure abound, and Filipinos still live in fear. One of my friends posted this on his Facebook wall:
       “...LOITERING and THROWING garbage on street should be treated as a crime serious offense. Kill them all! They make the city flood!
            A bit harsh but he has a point. Even small garbage makes a difference. I myself am proud to say that I DON’T THROW MY GARBAGE ON STREETS or ANYWHERE. I always find time to look for a trash bin to deposit my waste. If I don’t find any, I always bring it home. It’s a good thing when some individual, organizations or company protect and promote the environment/property they have. And some even invite people to join their eco-activities in promoting not just the cleanliness but protection of our environment.
            Here in Nasugbu, there’s an annual beach clean-up where people from different walks of life volunteer to clean the beaches. There’s the initiative of SM’s Hamilo Coast and WWF-Philippines to protect the biodiversity of our seas. Even Pepsi came to town twice to promote their Ayos Pinas Project. And just last summer, Citystate Properties and Management Corporation (CPMC) the developer of Sandari Batulao organized a summer full of fun and adventures not just for families but for everyone who wants to do something different.
            Their first offering was the Sandari Forest Trekking Adventure. Set in a 52-hectare Sandari Forest Reserve sprawled near the famous Mt. Batulao, outdoor enthusiasts, week-enders, the crew of Batulao View magazine, with the assistance of CPMC staff and  the forest caretaker and trek guide Mar Salazar of Batulao Bio-Loop Farms, we enjoyed the best nature has to offer. From low-lying shrubs to gigantic century-old trees, my fellow trekkers marveled at the unique variety of flora & fauna during the more than two-hour trail while indulging our thirst for adventure. Flowering plants and fruit-bearing trees are also interspersed in the high-density growth of greens, providing color, diversity and beauty to the Forest’s ecosystem. But what attracts us the most were the distinct natural structures formed inside the forest such as the intertwining Balete trees (e.g “The Arc”) and the drooping vines.
            Here’s a short video I made… Enjoy!

            TRIVIA: Some scenes of GMA 7's Mulawin was shot there!
            One thing I would never forget on that day, it was my first time I travelled and joined such activity alone. Good thing that the staff of CPMC especially Mam Charry Concepcion-Malabo and Sir Yahoo (our Official Photographer) made me feel comfortable with their warm welcome. After the trek they’ve treated all the trekkers to a very Filipino lunch – adobo, kangkong and talong with bagoong and inihaw na tilapia.
            This was the beginning of my summer and the first of 3 activities I joined that was organized by CPMC’s Sandari. One thing I learned on this activity, it’s easy to say you love Mother Nature, but it’s a whole different level when you actually live it by heart.  For the participants, you all saw the forest, you all have your memories taken, but it doesn’t end with photo ops. What you saw, what you heard, and what you learned, share it to everyone and start living the life of a true eco-warrior.

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