THE Malaysian Nature Society (MNS) Kuching Branch and Sarawak Heritage Society (SHS) are jointly organising a trip to Peninjau in Siniawan, Bau, about 50km from Kuching on Sunday.
The trip is part of the societies’ attempt to retrace the Wallace Trail in Peninjau, because of its significant natural heritage for Sarawak.
MNS, in a statement issued yesterday said naturalist Alfred Russel Wallace (1823 –1913) spent many months at Rajah James Brooke’s bungalow at Peninjau.
In his book “The Malay Archipelago”, Russel wrote: “I have been staying some time at a cottage of Sir James Brooke, about 36kms inland, on the ridge of a mountain, at an elevation of about 1,000 feet. The path up is peculiar, half over broken rocks, the other half up ladders.
“Huge boulders, as big as the houses themselves, stand or hang over them in the most extraordinary manner. The boulders are picturesque and stained with lichens, and on the shady side covered with moss, while the tops are generally clothed with ferns and orchids.”
Prior to his travels through the Malay Archipelago, Wallace had begun to think about ways to prove that living creatures are constantly changing. So, while in Sarawak he wrote a paper titled “On the Law Which Has Regulated the Introduction of New Species” published in September 1855 (commonly known as “Sarawak Law 1855”).
It was this essay that spurred Darwin to write “Origin of Species”. Wallace and Darwin are recognised today as co-developers of the theory of natural selection.
The trip to Peninjau/Bukit Serumbu is open to MNS and SHS members only and limited to 30 people on a first-come-first-served basis.
Individuals interested to join the trip, however, must be physically fit because the climb is tough. The participants are to meet at Siniawan’s community hall which is located before the junction entering the old Siniawan Bazaar at 8am.
Each participant will have to pay RM20 inclusive of a local guide fee and breakfast.
For registration and information, email to firstname.lastname@example.org or email@example.com before April 15.