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Arrival Day hike to Matura

Published: 
Saturday, May 26, 2018
Enjoying Mermaid Basin. PICTURE ISLAND HIKERS

It promises to be the perfect family outing for everyone, including children five years and over. Come Arrival Day on Wednesday, Island Hikers is making a visit to the Mermaid Pools, located in Matura. In terms of difficulty, this hike is rated 3 (fair) and 35 minutes one-way. Assembly is at 7 am, at the corner of O’Meara Road and Churchill Roosevelt Highway, Arima; next to the doubles vendors. The expedition departs for Matura by 8 am.

The district of Matura, enriched with an abundance of rivers, and natural resources, is a paradise for outdoor enthusiasts. Its seven miles of coastline is a favourite seascape to observe the nesting of the leatherback turtles.

The name Matura originated from Amerindian and Spanish dialect and referred to as a region of dense unbroken forest. The river, which is timeless and patient, remains uncontaminated from human interference as it meanders through the vast landscape of uninhabited and continuous woodland. To experience its natural treasures, one has to explore the river. A favourite fun spot for a river adventure is the Mermaid Basins where there are fascinating pools to swim as well as relax in the beautiful ambiance of the wilderness. Further, upstream another remarkable destination is the Manulot Falls, which originates from a tributary cascading into the primary source.

Along the bank, the tall and majestic mora trees add splendor to the already picturesque landscape. The sun shining on the crystal clear waters reflect vibrant colors of emerald green. It remains a mystery how the name Mermaid came about maybe it is the serenity of the landscape and the irresistible temptation to sit on the rocks and sway one’s feet in the soothing waters of the river.

The expedition to the Mermaid Pool starts at Thomas Trace, situated just before the Matura Outreach Centre. The trek down to the river will take 35 minutes and to access the basins there are two shallow areas to cross. During the dry season, the landscape is prone to bush-fires and to preserve the environment, the Forestry Division replanted the forest with pine trees (pinus caribae). These trees not only beautify the landscape but also protect the watershed in the prevention of soil erosion. There is a fire observation tower built at a strategic location to oversee its miles of territory.

Over the years, the popularity of the Mermaid Pools has increased, and it is the responsibility of citizens to carry out their litter and not light fires for cooking in sensitive areas.

For this outing, vehicles will be watched by residents and a donation collected. Registration will be on the morning of the hike, and hikers are recommended to walk with a change of clothing and footwear. Life jackets provided but if you have one bring it along.

MORE INFO

For more info call hike leaders: Marcia (490 242); Jamal (761- 1889); and, Mario (749-2956), or www.islandhikers.com

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