In the wilderness lies the preservation of the world.
Henry David Thoreau
Deep in the temperate rain forest
Brigitte’s voice pulled me from my deep sleep.
After I went to bed fairly late, I was happy to be able to sleep in till about 10. The sun, the rain that had stopped, and our pancake brunch made me smile as I walked into the kitchen.
Following breakfast, everyone went to their own silent spot, by themselves. I enjoyed the time, which I got to spend with this unbelievable nature at the Toba River. The sound of the surging river, the songs of the birds and the wind that flows through the treetops were my only companions. My eyes were always drawn towards the snow covered mountains and the crowns of the trees. I lost myself in thought. The unique nature, the power, but more than that the beauty accompanied me all day. Around midday we went into the deep temperate rainforest, discovered it, hiked and marveled.
It was difficult to make headway in the dense undergrowth, but that did not dampen our mood. I was amazed at the 800-year-old maple tree, covered with moss and with a wolf’s cave in its trunk. 800 years. Unbelievable to think about what this tree has experienced and survived: the Middle Ages, the Crusades, industrialization, two world wars… I could continue this list for hours and I still can’t imagine what it feels like to live that long.
A bit further on we found a giant cedar that was covered by a poplar. This impressive theater of nature made me realize once again how important this project is. How important it is to protect this ecosystem. After the fun, of course, came the work. We had to measure all eight plots again and also to complete various personal projects. We were tired and hungry when we returned to camp. Ronny and David, who had stayed there, had already started making dinner and we sat down at the campfire to enjoy our goulash.
We let the evening end while listening to music from Ronny’s cell phone.
I am sitting in the warmth with my hot chocolate next to me and can’t wait for the next day and the rest of the week we have here in the Toba Valley.
Completely alone in the indescribably beautiful nature that wraps itself around us… I still cannot believe I am here.