This is the biggest Krabak tree in Thailand. It towers 50 metres above the ground and measures 16 metres plus around its girth. This giant tree is found 4 km from the headquarters of Taksin Maharat Park in Tak Province. Actually the park formally was known as Ton Krabak Yai National Park (big Krabak tree). I think it is a pity they changed the name after a former Thai king. As if this tree wasn’t regal enough.
Now I had never before heard of this tree so I did some research. Krabak is the Thai name for the tree. I couldn’t find an English name, not unusual, but it is part of the Dipterocarpaceae family and of the Anisoptera costata species. This tree is endangered as a result of extensive illegal logging. They are a source of aromatic oils, balsam, resins and plywood. PLYWOOD! How very sad that these magnificent trees befall that fate.
This particular tree has survived because it is very hard to get to located as it is a the foot of a very steep sided valley. Here is a photo of our descent down the valley face looking over to the other side. We had to descend a steep 400 metres to get to the valley floor which was very trying for my knees.
I have seen estimates of the tree’s age ranging from 700 to 1000 years. Apparently it is hard to measure the age of tropical trees due to indistinct or no rings as a result of even growth throughout the year. Certainly this is an old tree. I felt honored sitting by this king of trees in the cool shade of its canopy.