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Sunday, Dec 03, 2023

Appreciate HK beauty, trailwalkers urged

The Oxfam Trailwalker event is set to resume on Friday after a four-year break, with a senior official calling on participants to enjoy the beautiful scenery as they trek on the mountain ridge.
A total of 400 teams comprising 1,600 people will join the 100-kilometer hike on MacLehose Trail from Pak Tam Chung in Sai Kung to Tai Tong in Yuen Long from Friday to Sunday.

On a post on Facebook yesterday, Deputy Financial Secretary Michael Wong Wai-lun wrote that the event organized by charity Oxfam has drawn over 100,000 people since 1986 to become the city's largest hiking activity.

"The journey requires physical strength and the will power of participants who have to form a team, make plans in advance and practice continuously," Wong said.

Wong, who first participated as a trekker in 1991 and then helped as a volunteer, said the journey was more than a personal challenge but also a test of friendship. Wong added: "Instead of running alone, the trailwalker event requires four teammates to cooperate with each other and show team spirit. It also requires the whole team to complete the race together."

Wong called on participants not to miss the beauty of Hong Kong during the walk.

"Hong Kong is a special place where urban areas are filled with buildings and the mountains and seas are right next to the buildings," Wong said.

Oxfam last held the event in 2018 before it was canceled due to social unrest in 2019 and the Covid pandemic in 2020 and 2021.

The hike last year, from November 25 to 27, was held virtually due to the pandemic.

Oxfam said authorities required the organizer to either lower the number of participants sharply or shorten the length of the route.

It is because, it added, a large number of people are expected to participate and they will not be wearing masks for a long period of time.

They will also need to stop to eat and drink to replenish their strength.

The charity reduced the number to 400 teams, each comprising four members, and received the green light in October last year to hold the trailwalker this week.

Up to HK$15 million is expected to be raised this time, compared to HK$30 million in past events.

Oxfam Trailwalker advisory committee chairman Bernard Charnwut Chan said another event will be held in November.

Oxafm hopes as many as 6,000 people will participate in that event.
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