Saturday, 3 October 2009

Jungle Camp

"If it ain't raining it ain't training!"  If this old adage is true, that unfortunately renders the last few days obsolete for the staff of Borneo 09K. The last 3 days of jungle training camp were blissfully dry, other than a spectacular thunderstorm which took place whilst everyone was tucked up in their bashers. The staff have had an intensive period of training up at TAC before the intrepid groups trekked into the jungle to test out their new skills by setting up camp for the night. The pictures tell the stories better than I can, so look on.

Considering Mount Kinabalu is over 4000m high it has an amazing ability to disappear from all view depending on the weather. Look closely and you can see its foreboding peaks through the clouds on the drive up to the training area.

On arrival, the first task was ensuring we all had a place to rest our heads after a long day out in the sun. This communal basher has enough hammocks to sleep the whole team once they had strung up their mosquito nets and stored all their kit safe from any unexpected showers.

An intense day of sessions included radios training, pictured below. These radios are used on all projects to communicate back to field base twice a day in scheduled slots and works by skillfully throwing two ends of a radio antenna (dipole) up in two trees and hoisting it up.

Campcraft instructor and jungle guide Floyd then taught Jessie how to use a parang safely - give everyone a wide berth and keep all body parts out of the way. Then the art of stringing up a hammock and tarpaulin tested out here by Nicki for a good night's sleep - tie it tight and hope for the best. Finally how to best dig a camp long drop - basically take a spade and dig a hole.

Why did the Raleigh venturer cross the river? Because they're on a 12 day trek to Maga Falls in Long Pasia, thats why.... This team are demonstrating a safe river crossing, getting a feel for the power of the currents and working as a team. Trek groups will get the opportunity to visit the beautiful Maga Falls on their adventure challenge phase, but to get there there may be a few of these crossings to contend with first.

Nope, not a police line up and no, the staff pictured here are not up against a firing squad either, this is 'lost man procedure' another tried and tested method Raleigh has developed.

This may look like a gormless bunch but they are actually a team of staff who have been trained in the use of GPS equipment, basic life support, trauma care, first aid procedures, health and hygiene, tool safety, cooking over trangias, water safety and throw ropes, radios, campcraft and medical evacuation procedures.With all this information absorbed it was time to put it into practice at jungle training camp.

Opting for style of over practicality with this hat and sunglasses fashion tip, Bruno and the team kicks off the trek crossing a typical Bornean suspension bridge across the river. Laden down with enough kit for the team to make camp and a huge tarpaulin strapped to a bamboo pole they had terrain and views like this to look forward to .....


After a night up at jungle camp, to catch out all those who hadn't listened properly in class, the trek out turned into a casualty evacuation (casevac) practice session, seeing the staff employ all their new skills. In a bizarre coincidence that saw all the available medics fall down with broken legs 100m apart from each other the teams set up emergency comms, build stretchers and made makeshift splints in a bid to evacuate their favourite medics out to a hospital. After the final push, the buses were waiting at the road taking us back to some nice cold showers and the anticipation of project allocations that afternoon.


Amy said...

Hi Chi, looks fun, hope you are having a good time.....
Love Amy Kam and Jessica xxx

Iain Cox said...

Happy Birthday Chi! Have they given you a day off?! Hope you are enjoying it. From Iain & Amy.

Bharti said...

Happy Birthday Chi! Hope you're not struggling too much now u have hit OLD! Get those young kids to get you a zimmer frame...Bee & Luke.x

Phillip said...

Hi Adam,Hope your keeping the pace going.Just finding my way around the website,all looks cool,been bitten yet by any monster spiders havent heard the screams.Love you loads, Mum and Dad x

Anonymous said...

Angus Genius Hannah dont let us down, uncle david and auntie mari are counting you. Auntie mari wants to know if youre enjoying yourself and david wants to know if you are having any romance.

Much love
neil david and mari

Carmen Sykes said...

Hi Josh, it was good talking to you yestarday and catching up with everything you've been doing. Just looked at the blog, looks like you have all been doing amazing work, bet you're glad the holes for the bridge have already been dug. Hope you enjoy phase 2, speak to you when you get back. Tom says hi as do Holly and Liam. Love you loads, xxx

Ben Ford said...

all aboarddddddd mick ford !!
hows the jungle . hope your enjoying , i've tried texting you but i doubt you would have got them lol . well i hope you didn't pack that cape !!
darren , tony , steph and that have been asking for you.
well i'll drop off another message soon . have fun bro !
ben x

Ben Ford said...

your big cousin dennis here ! your doing well mate . keep it up ! come on the hooops proud of you !