Gold Mining and Camp Leakey or Pesalat Tour – 1 Day

Travel far up the Sekonyer River and see first hand the devastating effects of Gold mining extraction on the environment and learn about the complexity of the situation. Follow this with a memorable Orangutans encounter at Camp Leakey or a visit to Pesalat Reforestation Project both revealing the fragility of our ecosystem.

This tour is all about witnessing, learning and understanding the complexity of the situation Orangutans face today in Borneo and Tanjung Puting National Park.

Board our “klotok” at 7AM and travel the Sekonyer River for about 4 hours to see the practices of gold mining.

Gold mining, with illegal logging, commercial oil palm plantations and poaching, is one of the major threats to the survival of orangutans. 80% of Orangutans’ habitat has been lost in the past 20 years. Practices, such as the release of poisonous mercury in the Sekonyer River, also contaminate the main water supply available to local villages. The battle between industrial progress, people’s livelihood and the fragile biodiversity of Tanjung Puting National Park remains constant.

On your return to the lodge, if time allows, stop at Camp Leakey, a landmark research and rehabilitation center established in 1971 by renowned primatologist, Dr. Birute Galdikas and her former husband Rod Brindamour. Observe Orangutans in the wild and feel their vulnerability. Camp Leakey also offers a wonderful Information Center with a strong educational purpose.

Depending on time, you might visit Pesalat Reforestation Center. This forest regeneration area offers a nice easy walk through peat swamp and dry land, nice birding, a medicinal plant area and it allows you to select saplings such as Iron wood and plant them. Clouded Leopard and Sun bears have occasionally been spotted.

Return to the lodge, watch Proboscis monkeys (Nasalis larvatus) roost in trees and enjoy dinner.  To complete the day, your Guide will show you an after dinner DVD on Orangutans.

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