Wednesday, November 9, 2011

PHILIPPINE INDEPENDENCE BUSHCRAFT CAMP

THIS IS THE FIRST time that had been done in the Philippine Islands. Camp Red, your only Philippine bushcraft and survival guild south of Subic Bay; and Warrior Pilgrimage, a personal blog dedicated for bushcraft and survival; recently introduced the Philippine Independence Bushcraft Camp or PIBC MMXI to fourteen newcomers.

The activity was held at an undisclosed site designated as “Camp Damazo”; found deep in the bosom of the Babag Mountain Range in Cebu City on June 11 and 12, 2011. The party were led by this writer starting from Guadalupe by way of Bebut's Trail on the early morning of the first day after a short prayer of protection and good journey.

After claiming the campsite at midday, the participants chose their spot where to set up their tents and then the preparation for the noontime meal started. Camp Red prefer their meals eaten fresh from the cooking fires and it had been their trademark ever since. A water hole was dug for this purpose from a sandy bank of a free-flowing stream to supply the event's water requirements like washing, cooking and drinking.

In the afternoon, this writer introduced the participants to bushcraft and survival; what is its relation to the environment; and how it affects the individual's psychology. Field manuals and similar handouts were distributed by this writer to everyone to satisfy the demands of their curiosity. In addition, this writer stressed the vital importance of knives or bladed weapons as a part of every bushman's equipment.

Following up is a lecture about the basics of outdoor cooking by a Camp Red member-participant wherein the activity dragged on to preparing the next meal – dinner. During the cooking, this writer demonstrated the participants how to forage food along the stream after dark. All in all, five good-sized fresh-water crabs were added for supper.

A small campfire beside the stream was started and a joyous camaraderie ensued among the participants. “Camp Damazo” have never witnessed such an unusual gathering at this time and date before. There never were lights or sounds of laughter introduced before in this hidden nook and that makes this activity a source of adrenaline.

The following day, June 12, the national flag was raised on a staff secured by cords made from inner bark of trees. Newcomer Nikki Ledesma led the group to the singing of the Philippine National Anthem. Later, another newcomer, Glenn Pestaño – the one who demoed yesterday of how an everyday carry or EDC should look like – led the Oath of Allegiance to the republic.

After that, this writer discussed about the basics of survival-tool making and how to use such skill to ensure your survival. The ability to create something like cordage, digging sticks and cooking utensils from nothing is greatly emphasized by this writer to the participants and highlighted by cooking milled corn inside of a bamboo pole.

The activity ended after lunch and this writer again guided the party to a long river trek that pass over many hidden waterfalls, thick jungle, difficult terrain and back to Guadalupe. The following are the sets of collage that describe this very novel activity:



OBSERVATIONS:

  1. PIBC MMXI taught the participants that bushcraft and survival can complement well with backpacking and mountain climbing.
  2. Bushcraft and survival is an interest or hobby worth trying. Foreigners love to learn survival techniques in the tropics. We live in the tropics yet we rather spend expensive gears and equipment geared for an outdoor activity that is done in high altitude.
  3. A peripheral outdoor activity was held during this date and PIBC MMXI demonstrated that this will be the best alternative in the future.
  4. We are used to following an event tailored for Westerners and we disregard the crafts that our ancestors taught us. All of us have the potential to practice traditional crafts but, somehow, we are ignorant that it exists even if it runs in our veins. It is stored in our subconscious and all we have to do is remember.
  5. Camp Red and Warrior Pilgrimage have espoused the practice of these skills and it is our obligation to transfer these skills to those who would want to learn these.



Document done in Libre Office 3

1 comment:

magi said...

Nice article, thanks for the information.
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