8 Valuable Lessons I've Learned from Sandugo's Camp Adventure 2017

Wednesday, June 28, 2017

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Last June 17-18, Sandugo held its second installment of Camp Adventure. This 2-day crash course on life in the outdoors was held in Adventure Farm inside Timberland Heights.
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Kid-friendly, with lectures reinforced by hands-on sessions, the event drew both families and hobbyists looking to improve their outdoor knowledge and skills. Proving that learning can and does extend outside the four walls of the classroom, here are eight pieces of valuable information I've gleaned from Camp Adventure.
1. Organic Farming is more than just pesticides and fertilizers. 
When one hears of organic produce, one immediately thinks of vegetables and fruits grown without the aid of synthetic fertilizers and chemical pesticides. Apparently, there's more to it than just these. 
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In order for a farm to be considered organic, a number of requirements must be complied with. Meticulous prerequisites range from rotation of crops to land area. Even certain kinds of pesticides are allowed to some extent. It's quite an arduous process, but once in place, would yield into healthier and safer crops that could even be sold cheaper than commercial ones. For more details, check this out.

2. Odorless livestock and poultry farming is possible through probiotics. 
Timberland Heights' Adventure Farm rears chickens and pigs among other things. Considering this, you'd think it would smell iffy in here. Lo and behold, the vicinity still smells of trees and fresh air. The secret? Probiotics. 
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Adventure Farm has a concoction of probiotics that gets mixed into the pigs' and chickens' drinking water. This mixture neutralizes the bacteria in the animals' digestive tracks, making their poop smell nothing. The same concoction is also sprayed on the pens' litter to further minimize the odor.


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3. Dry-bags go beyond waterproofing.
Aside from Organic Farming 101, Camp Adventure also conducted a Basic Mountaineering Course. In one of the lessons, Instructor Rangel Mateo shared the many uses for a dry-bag. 

In addition to helping our gadgets and stuff stay dry, dry-bags can also be used as improvised buckets. This could especially come in handy when you're fetching water from a relatively far source. Dry-bags can also function as flotation devices. Stuff some air in there, tuck and zip it tight, then plunge it into the water upside down and you got yourself a nice little floatie. 

4. The difference between a multi-fuel stove and a butane one. 
Well, aside from the obvious: the former being able to utilize all kinds of fuel – from denatured alcohol to lighter fluid – and the latter working only with canned butane. 
camping essentials

Multi-fuel stoves work well in high altitudes because there is no compression. Stoves using canned butane may produce sputtering flames when a certain altitude is reached. In some cases, even exploding because of the intense pressure.  

Related Adventure: How Travel Changed My Life

5. 'Tinder' is not what you think it is when it comes to the outdoors. 
While a campfire is discouraged when in the outdoors, sometimes, it is unavoidable. In cases when it is, it's best to minimize its impacts. The best way to start is to be familiar with its parts. 
how to build a campfire

A typical campfire has three parts: the tinder, the kindling, and fuel. A tinder must be dry and easily lit. It could be dried leaves and teeny twigs. Once the tinder has caught fire, larger pieces called kindling can now get burning. Kindling is usually splinter woods or fuzz sticks. Make sure not to "suffocate" the fire by dropping big sticks too fast. Build it small and healthy. Once the fire looks steady, feed it with fuelwood. These are the larger sticks that would keep the flame going. 

6. The angle of your tent pegs says a lot about you. 
You know how a person's handwriting is a mirror to that person's character? It's the same way when you pitch a tent. Only this time, the way you pitch a tent can reveal whether or not you have basic mountaineering knowledge. 
camping essentials

To make sure that the tent is sturdy and won't topple over, tent pegs should be embedded at an angle away from the tent. By doing this, you decrease chances of your tent being blown away by a gush of wind. This simple act is often a tell-tale sign whether one is a neophyte outdoorsman or a trained one. 

Related Adventure: My Home the Hinterlands

7. Knowing how to properly tie a knot can mean the difference between life and death.
There are many kinds of knots and each one serves its purpose. In the outdoors, knowing your knots from one another could save you (or your companion's) life. 
basic mountaineering course

A bowline knot is the one you want when you need to haul a person. This knot doesn't tighten when pulled, making it ideal for rescue. If you want a reliable knot that's easy to untie, the square knot's got you covered. It's easy to do and can be undone in two quick steps. 

8. "We go to the mountain to blend in, not to stand out."
The Leave No Trace (LNT) Principles are the guiding light of all outdoorsmen. While safety reminders state that it's better to wear loud-colored shirts when hiking, the LNT advises wearing earth colors instead. This is because most creatures base their biological patterns (e.g. mating) on the color of their surroundings, sometimes taking cues from when flowers are in bloom. Creatures might mistake our colorful shirts as blooms and might disrupt their natural pattern. 
basic mountaineering course

leave no trace principles

Bringing whistles is also advised when going to the outdoors. But some whistles are preferable to others. Survival whistles usually have a lower note compared to your usual "party" whistles. This is in accordance, again, with the LNT. Foreign sounds could distract animals and might alter their behavior. Remember: no matter how small our actions may be, it has an impact. 
BONUS: It's never too early, nor too late, to start learning how to properly conduct ourselves in the outdoors.
In Camp Adventure, I saw families with little kids learning together with grown-ups who's had considerable experience in the outdoors. This experience had taught me that it's never too early nor too late to start learning about something. Especially when you enjoy the wild spaces as much as I do, taking the time to learn about basic mountaineering would really be helpful. It will teach us to minimize our impact, how to be responsible adventurers, and could even save our lives in the future.
basic mountaineering course

Have you taken a Basic Mountaineering Course? What have you learned? Share them in the comments.

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Special thanks to Sandugo – Celineism's official adventuring footwear – for allowing me to take part in this event. It fills me with joy that there are brands that share the same passion and care for the outdoors as I do. Padayon!

Shoutout too to Adventure Farm and Timberland Heights for serving as the perfect venue for this kind of activity. May you keep true to your commitment to sustainable development. 

To stay updated with future events like Camp Adventure, make sure to like and follow Sandugo's official Facebook page as well as BaseKamp's

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