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An eventful day

Today I caught an early ferry out of Mui Wo because I needed to be in Hoi Ha to prepare for the Dragonfly outdoor ed school program tomorrow. As soon as I got there it was time to head out to visit the camp where we'll be staying. The Hoi Ha resident monkey was out and about wreaking havock on trash cans and eyeing us for food. He often hangs out near the end of the road where the bus stops. If you have groceries in plastic shopping bags he'll attack you and steal your food! He is fat from eating human food from the garbage.

We hopped on the light bus and headed down the mountain. At our stop, we headed into the jungle. The BGCA camp is located in the hills surrounding Sai Kung and overlooks Bamboo Bay, but getting there involves a 30 minute walk along a narrow, winding concrete path through the jungle. 
Bamboo Bay:

Along the was I spotted this rather large snail and tested out the macro on my iphone. 
We passed an old village with a little museum inside surrounded by maybe old, maybe recent ruins. 
The camp is very well kept with tons of cool stuff like a high and low ropes course, two climbing walls, playgrounds and more. So far this is my favorite camp. 
The little bungalows we'll be staying in:
A pretty impressive climbing tower compared to the other camps:
After our site visit we headed back to the staff house in Hoi Ha for a meeting and more planning. When you're an outdoor instructor, planning frequently involves going outside and exploring. Mukund and I hadn't been to the mangroves or up the stream in Hoi Ha where we will be taking the kids, so we headed out with Eilidh (pronounced aylee- it's Gaelic) to 'research.' First we hit the mangroves and found some ominous changes had taken place. Currently Hoi Ha is a very small village in a remote area surrounded by the Sai Kung Nature Park. The nature park includes areas of forests as well as waterfront areas including mangroves. There is a big struggle happening currently because a big building company wants to construct dozens of homes right in the area of, and the hillside above the mangroves. As far as we knew, the deal wasn't done and no construction had begun. What we found today was different. Tons and tons of sand has been brought in and dumped- drastically reducing the water flow into and out of the mangroves. 
I was here two weeks ago and would not have been dry standing where Mukund is standing in that photo. The water around the mangroves was very stagnant and now filled with algae and there were a dozen or so dead fish. It seems obvious to me that the process of filling in the mangroves has already begun. 
Algae on mangrove roots and in the water:
After the mangroves it was time for the stream walk- where we walk up the stream that flows down into the mangroves. We had fun jumping from rock to rock and ducking under the hanging vines. We followed a trail from near the top of the stream that winds through the woods and back down to the waterfront.

 The trail passes a big beautiful banyan tree. A banyan tree this big is probably thousands of years old.





That's all for today :)

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