Saturday, January 9, 2010

Visiting a beautiful waterfall (2010.1)

One of my first outings this month was to a very beautiful waterfall with my usual group of photography and nature loving friends. We went there as part of a photography outing. Unfortunately, I do not know how to return to this place! We made so many turns, left right left right in the car and along the trail and then left using a different route that I totally lost my bearings!



Trekking along a fast flowing creek. The water in the stream is cool and clear with many small freshwater fish such as rasboras and barbs.



All along this stream, there are many water cascades, rapids and small waterfalls. The types of rock on the river bed and along the river appear to be shale, slate, clay and sandstone. Wading barefooted is not a good idea as the chipped rocks and pebbles can be very sharp!



This one makes for a funny picture and shows that sometimes, photographers need to get right down to the ground to take a good photo. Being a nature photog, I always end up with dirty pants or shirts as I often have to crouch down or sit on wet ground just to take a picture.



So what exactly are they photographing? See next picture.



Pitospatha species. A type of semi aquatic aroid which grows in great abundance here. This species is often seen growing in dense clumps next to waterfalls and clear water mountain streams. Many happened to be in flower here, which caused a flurry of shutter clicks.



Like other aroids, Pitospatha produces a spadix when flowering.



Taking photos of streamside flora and fauna. Quite dark here so it was definitely a challenge to get a good picture. However, all of us carried dSLRs so that gave us some flexibility in using high ISO/high sensitivity settings in tricky situations. Our SLRs also allowed for much faster and more accurate focusing than any pocket digicam could.



What’s this? The foam nest of a tree frog or an arboreal snake? Soap bubbles?? No, it’s the hiding place of a jumping insect! See next picture.



This bug is quite a jumper and I couldn’t get a good close up photo before it disappeared. Some insects in the forest do build foam nests and this is one of them. I do not know the genus or species name.



After taking our time taking photos of everything worth a click along the stream, we finally continued on to the waterfall. This is one of the most beautiful waterfalls I have ever visited in Sarawak. Pictures just don’t do it any justice. There was a very strong cooling draft created by the torrent of water and the big pool here was so inviting!



The mosses on the rocks give it a very “New Zealand-ish” feel. Note the big uprooted tree stuck in the middle on the second tier of the waterfall.

There are three tiers in all and the overall height is about 35 meters by my estimate.



Friend going in for a dip in the clear, cool and refreshing water. He came out feeling rejuvenated after trekking a distance to get here. With no change of clothes, I had to be content with just wading about the shallow end.



This is such a beautiful, unspoiled place. It’s easy to see why many would rather the place be kept secret (we definitely agree with them!). It would only end up polluted if it became popular with visitors who have no qualms chucking their trash everywhere they go.

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