School camp in Teluk Batik
Mr. Goh of Explore the Wilderness invited me to follow a school camp week in Teluk Batik he organized with an international school from Kuala Lumpur. It was basically a program he has here available.
There were 69 students plus 4 teachers who stayed at the Marina Cove Hotel, a very nice hotel in the area of Teluk Batik at the sea side.
The group arrived on a Monday afternoon when I wasn't there. I joined on Tuesday morning. This day I had to help Mr. Goh. The group of 69 students had been divided in 4 smaller groups. There were 4 different activities which should take a morning and an afternoon. The students had already finished one activity on Monday afternoon and would do another on Thursday, leaving the Wednesday for alternatives. Thursday afternoon would be used to give the students a choice to continue one of the activities to continue.
Today, Tuesday I was asked to bring a group of 18 students to the Teluk Batik beach where Mr. Goh had brought out 12 canoes. The idea was simple: Mr. Goh would give the instruction and we would go canooing for as much time we had.
It started with bringing the canoes to the sea side. 8 students picked up a canoe and one by one all were brought to the sea side. Then all the students took a peddle.
Mr. Goh is a born instructor. His explanations were easy to follow. He explained how to use the peddles, and why we needed a life jacket.
It was time to get in the water. Here Mr. Goh explained how the life jacket worked. Now we came to the technique of getting in the boat. After showing it was time for two volunteers to show what they had learned. And it turned out to be quite easy once used to the boat.
The two volunteers went out, showed they could go forward, backwards, left and right. They came back and now it was time for all of to get in the boats and peddle along the coats to a few beaches further south.
Safety is everything, and Mr. Goh knows this so he had a motorboat organized in case we would face problems.
We followed the coastline for some time until we reached another beach. Few people ever come here because there are no paths except a jungle path to this beach. It gave the students time to stretch legs before we moved back.
Back at Teluk Batik, we got the boats out of the water and brought them back to a safer area as the tide was coming up. With 18 students this task was easy and quick done. And after a bus brought us back to the hotel where the students rejoined their classmates and all went for lunch.
The rope course
The afternoon was spend on a rope course. I joined Mr. Hong, who, together with Mr. Goh set up a great student rope course near the Marina Cove resort on top of a hill. This meant we had to climb up first to the top of the hill. Here in the shade we enjoyed the course which turned out to be challenge for some students while others found easily their pace.
Mr. Hong explained how the harness worked, then divided the group in teams of 4 (we had 4 harnesses).
The rope course is divided in several challenges where from one part of the rope the student has to find his/her way to the next part. At all times the student will on a safety line, so in case he/she loses balance they will hang on the safety line, as on student here shows as an example:
When all the students had finished the course, they were given the choice to go back to the hotel or try the course again. We, after all had some time.
This gave some the opportunity to explore to find their limits, as the girl in the photo here shows.
It was clear the students had a lot of fun and one told me she stayed with the rope course because this was something she could not easy do again and she loved it. Well, I could see how much she loved it, I think she went at least 6 times on the rope and every time she tried to make it herself a little bit more difficult ( not walking on the rope but just just the loose hanging ropes to get to the next tree, doing the crocodile leap amongst other ways to move over the rope.
The surrounding of Teluk Batik is great for jungle trekking. There are several paths to take and you don't have to go far to be away from the noise and the people. Explore the Wilderness has set out several routes, shorter and longer depending on how the group would react on the conditions.
Trekking in this area is great. The treks Mr. Goh has available go from 1 hour to 3 hours and go through the hills, the rock formations to some hard to reach beaches and boulders back to the Teluk Batik beach.
Mr. Hong and Mr. K.D. were leading a group into the jungle on Thursday morning on a hard to find path. Destination was a rock formation which was perfect to experience abseiling. After a short instruction by Mr. Hong, he, and Mr. K.D. went up on the rock formation with a the first couple of students.
Although the distance to cover is maybe not too much, about 10 meters or so, the rocks gave the students a great feel of coming down.
We were unlucky that the rain, which started when we left the hotel, became heavier. For that reason only a few students in this group could do an abseiling.
Although we couldn't do all the abseiling, the short walk up and down made us all feel the it had been a worthy thing to do. But because of the rain we felt cold, even though the outside temperature was still 25°C
It was a pleasure to join Mr. Goh on this school camp week in Teluk Batik. From what I saw, I can only say it was excellent organized and I felt that students, teachers and Mr. Goh plus his staff enjoyed it. And I was lucky to get involved. It was great. Join Mr. Goh to Explore the Wilderness.