Sunday, August 22, 2010

Mt Kinabalu Mesilau Trail May 2007

What's inspired me in the first place to start this borneotrekker blog is because of my passion for mountaineering. Which is started since I enter university back on 2000. I don't know where it comes from but maybe my Dusun ancestors who are still living on the Mt Kinabalu (the locals believe so), have given me the aura. I guess :-P

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Mt Kinabalu is the 1st mountain I climb in Borneo & the 5th mountain in Malaysia after Mt. Ledang, Mt. Yong Yap, Mt. Stong Ayam & Mt Tahan. Hope to share the experience about these mountains in another stories.

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Donkey's Ears (one of the peak at Mt. Kinabalu)

Then I just realized that up until now, I haven't blog anything about any mountains that I had climb before. Which is quite a big issue for a blog with the mountain as the main theme right :-P. Anyway, it's not too late to blog about it now & the important thing is I want to keep my promise to my friends. So here are the pictures and pretty much of the story behind the pictures that I still can recall until now.

village
a village at the foot of the mountain

29 May 2007:

Four (4) of us started the journey from Kota Kinabalu (KK) late in the morning. We had rented this van with an affordable price...

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together with this driver which I forget his name already & I lost his contact numbers. Should keep it, just in case we needed for the second trip to Mt. Kinabalu. Thinking about the Via Ferrata or the new back trail from Kota Belud. Hehe!

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Stop over at Restoran Bayu Kinabalu for lunch. That time the restaurant is just in front of the Kinabalu National Park main gate. But now, it has moved further back before the National Park, if you're from KK.

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The foods here are not bad at all. Actually, when I think back, among all the restaurants along the KK-Ranau road that I've went before, so far they served the nicest. But as for now, I'm not sure about their quality of their foods anymore. Maybe SIRIM should go there & check it whether it's still up to the ISO standard. Right Anee? :-P

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This is what I had order for my lunch. A set of plain rice & chicken with mixed vegetables. Doesn't it look delicious to you? The only thing is that the restaurant is also visited by some special guests called flies. But I bet those flies are a bit hygienic than the KK's ones bocz they just perch on the vegetables. Kunun! Hehe! Luckily, we didn't have any sort of food poisoning symptom after eating there.

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After lunch, we continued our journey to the Mesilau Nature Resort. Usually for the first-timers to Mt. Kinabalu, they will choose Timpohon Trail which is faster & shorter. But not for us. We choose Mesilau Trail eventho it's longer bcoz we heard that the trail have much more interesting things to see. You'll understand what I'm saying when you go there to see for yourself.

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Before we reached the resort, we pass by the Kundasang Golf Club. I was just want to lie down there, breath the cold fresh air and looking at the beautiful green surrounding.

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Upon reaching the Mesilau Nature Resort, we have to stop over at the security gate to inform them about our arrival. Then I still remember until now, when one of the security guard asked us. He said something like this: "Are you guys from the Angkatan Berat group?" Then one of my friend reply him "Errkkk we never heard about Angkatan Berat but we do know about Angkatan Hebat." I think that time, everyone is trying very hard to control their laughter including me. I feel like my lungs going to explode anytime soon. Out of respect, we only laugh our head off when we pass the security gate. Haha!!! Jokes of the day!

We stayed at one of the lodge there and ours called Witti Range Lodge.

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It's quite comfortable with three (3) bedrooms, attached bathroom, comes with heated shower & a living room. Only two (2) rooms are occupied by us. The family that supposed to stay in the 3rd room is joining their friends in the other lodge. So we have the lodge all to ourselves.

living room
courtesy of ujie's camera

Actually, we join this trip under the Sutera Harbour Resort group. One of my colleague had a sister working at Sutera Harbour and was in-charge for this trip. So it's easy for me to get few places & arrange with her since Mt. Kinabalu is managed by the Sutera Harbour. You must be thinking that we pay a large sum for this kind of accommodation, but you're so wrong. We only pay roughly like RM180 including guide & park fees, climbing permit & insurance plus accommodation both at Mesilau & Laban Rata Rest House. But it's all in the past. Nowadays, the cost of climbing Mt. Kinabalu is equal with going for oversea trip. Maybe lesser if you can get the Air Asia free seats promotion.

bedroom
courtesy of ujie's camera

Usually when we bring foods, we intend to bring more than necessary. It's like we are very very scared of starvation :-P But more is better than less right??? Hehe

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30 May 2007:

After the good night sleep, we started our 1st part of the climbing around 8.00 a.m.

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To accompany me for this climbing would be my trusted 'Adidas Kampung'. Until now, I'm still using this shoes for most of my trekking activities. It's reliable & cheap which only cost me like RM4 per pair. And after each trip, I just can easily throw it away if I'm bored with it. Errkk what I mean is if it's torn & cannot be use anymore. Hehe! You can buy this kind of shoes at the shops around Sinsuran, KK or at Donggongon Town, Penampang.

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Adidas Kampung

Of course being the city girls & have so much money to spend :-P, we shared on paying the potters to carry our stuff. We only bring our own pack lunch, drinks & camera.

ulai at mesilau trail
see how light I am but still makes no difference. i still feel like crawling to reach Laban Rata :-P


ani & lena
courtesy of lena's camera

At the same time, we're helping those school kids who are looking for an extra income during school holiday by becoming part time porters. Should we not helping our own people? Or do you called that a lame excuse? Hehe

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Anyway, the view along the Mesilau Trail is beyond imagination. You feel like you're somewhere else and not at Sabah. I never know that such place exist just at my doorsteps.

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Mesilau Trail


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the valley

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one of my favourite picture. I called it "Stairway to Heaven"

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with my walking stick! ehem! that time I'm not so fit as I'm now okay. kidding :-P

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The flowers at the mountain are one of the most fascinating I ever seen in my life. With the mist engulfing them, I feel like I'm in a heaven. Almost!

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flowers

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Mushrooms on the mountain!

As we taking our sweet time climbing or should I say, we're not fit enough unlike the rest of them :-P, we arrived at the Laban Rata Resthouse almost 5 p.m. & that time, it started to drizzle already.

ulai with the trees
see how clever I pose in flow with the trees...haha

I'm so hungry & exhausted by the time we arrived at Laban Rata. I just want to go straight to the Laban Rata Restaurant, sit there & eat as much as I want. But as my other friends have taken their bath & I don't want them to comment something like this "Ko fikir ko C*#% kah???". Yikes!!! Better I take a shower first to prevent from hearing unwanted & spicy comments. Huhu! Thank goodness, they provide hot shower there. I feel so fresh after that & so ready to attack the restaurant.

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Guess what I ate for dinner??? Hehe! I think the cold weather had preserved my chicken. When I check it, it's still edible for dinner. So I just request for plain rice only. Save some extra cost :-P Anyway, I don't want to complain about the price of the foods & drinks they charge at the restaurant because I had seen how the locals carry the stuff from below. I just hope they pay the porters fair & equal with their hard work & effort.

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A hot milo is just what I need for the cold weather. It's never been tastier as much as you drink it on the mountain.

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After filling our stomach & chit chat for a while, we retired to our room to get some decent sleep as we're going to leave early at 2.30 a.m. the next morning for the 2nd part of the climbing to the summit. As all of them easily went into sleep mode, it's a different story for me. I can't sleep eventho I try very very hard to close my eyes. So I decide to play around with my camera and this is one of the picture that I had captured. I'm not sure whether I'm still going to be alive tomorrow after she read this blog. Hehe!

sleeping unduk
Guess who's this?

By 12.30 a.m, I still can't sleep so I just get up & start sorting my things to bring to the summit. Some of them complaining that I making too much noise. Oppss sorry! I think I'm just too over excited. I've been waiting for this moment for so long & I can't wait to be on the summit of Mt. Kinabalu. You see when I was in high school, my family never allowed me to go for any outdoor trips, let alone climbing a mountain. I don't know whether it's got to do something with me being the youngest child but I think they care too much than necessary. So when I enter university, I just threw caution into the wind and being rebellious by doing all the outdoor stuff whenever I got the chance. And I told them only after I graduate. Kahkahkah!!! On the serious note, please do not follow this example :-P

uji packing
Ujie is sorting out her unnecessary stuff :-P

31 May 2007

We started our journey to the summit by 2.30 a.m. Don't you think all of us looks like 'kogutan' faces? he he he


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"comel kan muka blur si lena?" harharhar!!!

ujie & me


It's totally dark when we started walking up to the peak from Laban Rata. We depends entirely on our head lamp & follow the ropes that being provided. The trail to the summit is quite pack with people. From far, you can see torch lights flashing like the giant fireflies. And I can see the moon beautifully shinning. It's look so near when you're on top of the mountain. Pity my camera is not good enough to take picture at dark.

After some walking, crawling, begging & almost want to give up at the last peak, I arrived just on time to see the break of dawn at approximately 5.30 a.m. I'm speechless for a while. I really want to freeze the moment so that I can savour it as much as I want.

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"There is
beauty in the world! So much beauty in the world! Always beauty in the world! So much beauty in the world!"

Now I feel like I want to sing like Macy Gray. Luv that song! Next time I should sing it for my next mountain climbing, jungle trekking or adventure caving ^ = ^


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the V shape light


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darn! i forget to check my hair. but i've to accept this picture as it's not easy to go there :-P


lena & me
with Lena my climbing buddy


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with Uji on the top of the mountain

Thank goodness I found a picture of three of us. Thanks to Lena's camera :)) Errkk my face is so round there & I look like a boy. Haha!


the team
courtesy of Lena's camera

Actually I don't want to go yet, but we can't stay too long at the peak because many people are coming up and the peak cannot accommodate too much people at one time. We must give chance to other people to take picture. If you want to stay longer there, you must be fit enough to reach there early. Like some of them already reached the peak by 4.30 a.m. Whoaaa! What are they made from? Iron? But you have to get ready to face the cold of course.

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As we're making our way down, Lena had taken the picture of this guide carrying a boy. I can't recall the story behind it but it's a rare sight. Normally, if you really can't afford to climb anymore to the summit, they will recommend for you to go back down. I think this is a special case.

boy being carry
courtesy of lena's camera

The way down is more relaxing as we slowly walk & take more picture. We can see the view as far as Kota Kinabalu & Kundasang.

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Low's Peak (the highest peak)


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South Peak
(this is the picture which I've taken & use it for my blog's header)


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it's quite spooky with the mist hanging over the peak. not sure whether this is the St John's Peak?


st john's peak
Or this? I forgot & I confused! Blame it on the 3 years old memory :-P

I had seen many coins on the Sacrifice Pool. Very tempted to take it & use it later to buy drinks at the Laban Rata restaurant. Just kidding :-P I don't want my ancestors chasing me down the mountain later. Hehe!

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Before proceeding to the Timpohon Gate, we stop over at the Laban Rata Restaurant to have our lunch. On the way down, it's raining & the trail is quite slippery with the water going down on it. Thank goodness for my Adidas Kampung! It has a good grip & easily dry out bcoz it mades from rubber. But why I don't feel happy by looking at my face's expression below???

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Must be bcoz I'm drinking this untreated water.

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No la! :-P I never have problem with this kind of water. Palis-palis! My stomach has been trained well since I went for all those trekking back at Peninsular Malaysia during my Uni time. The source of water in the jungle there is much worse than here. I used to drink from a small & dirty pool before bcoz it's the only nearest water source from the camp site. And I didn't have my bath for 3 days long. Imagine that!!! I'm still alive & healthy till now tho :))

Beside one good thing about trekking during raining season, is that you just look up at the sky & open your mouth whenever you feel thirsty. I used to do that when I'm so lazy to take out my water bottle from my backpack. Kahkahkah!!!

Anyway, a few of my friends had stomach ache and vomited after that. Not sure whether it's bcoz of the water or the altitude sickness. Actually it's recommended to bring some Iodine Tablet to keep your drinking water safe every time you go for a camping or trekking. Prevention is better than cure ;-)

Meet this 'friend' on the way down. The longest & healthier worm I've ever seen. He/She must be feeding on all the good things from the mountain.

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We know that we're getting near to the Timpohon Gate when we saw those stairs. Reached there around 3-4 p.m. if I'm not mistaken. Three of my friends went back straight to Kota Kinabalu. As for me, I went back to Ranau bcoz there are few more days left of the Harvest Festival holiday before I come back to work.

timpohon

I'm glad that I already climb the Mt. Kinabalu in that year bcoz after that the cost to climb the mountain has been increased tremendously. Actually I would like to go there again, as I've fell in love with the magnificent mountain. But, when I think back, why not I try to conquer the other two (2) mountains first. I'm talking about Mt. Trus Madi & Mt. Tambuyukon. Heard that their trails are more difficult & challenging. Okay, it's time to start planning for the next mountain to conquer! ^ = ^