Thursday, 22 October 2015

The Forgotten Hill (Part Two)

Kokol Hill covered with thick cloud. Here Chris Lammert is checking the temperature
Paraglider Take Off Base is the highest point at Kokol Hill towering at 920 meters (roughly 2700 feet) above sea level. Paragliders like Chris Lammert will jump from this peak either flying solo or tandem and it takes roughly about 15 to 20 minutes to reach Pulutan or Taman Flamingo six kilometers away.

I love Kokol Hill when the peak is enveloped by cloud. It is so cool. At this time the average temperature is about 24 degrees c but sometime though rarely it can go as low as 18 degrees c. When I was 6 years old, I thought clouds are made up of snow, described in some fairy-tale children's book. I experienced "touching" cloud for the first time at the age of eight when my father took me up to a distant peak call Bukit Alab. But yet Kokol Hill is so close by for such an experience.

Rivers in Kokol Hill

Five minutes drive from the Take Off Base down into the valley, we can see many villages with beautiful rivers by its side. Among the villages are Kampong Natai, Kampong Tombongon, Kampong Poring-Poring and Kampong Bambangan. I notice in every village there are homestays, a village motel some sort. The villagers practice some sort of environmental control when come to harvesting the local river fish. It is call Tagal. They can only harvest the fish once a year and that is where the villagers take the opportunity to congregate and celebrate with feasting and drinking.

The primary forest of Kokol Hill
As I say over and over again, walking into the thick primary forest of Kokol Hill is a wonderful experience. It make our mind so peaceful. Among these wild flora, we can also find human interference in a constructive way; they planted fruit trees like durian, jackfruit and tarap. Tarap are native to Borneo and the Southern Philippines islands of Palawan and Mindanao. Tarap are related to jackfruit and breadfruit which came from the same genus, Artocarpus.

The first English romance-thriller from Borneo

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