Wednesday, January 24, 2018

Gunung Ledang, Tangkak

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Gunung Ledang or Mount Ophir is the tallest mountain in Johor which is located at Tangkak, Johor. Mount Ophir was my second experience in hiking after Broga Hill which is my first time hiking a mountain.

Height : 1, 276 metres
Difficulty : Medium to hard

Via : Asahan

I chose this mountain probably because it is located near my house so...why not I give it a try, right? Though in the beginning, I was not really confident because Mount Ophir is Malaysia's 6th most difficult mountain to climb & it was just my second time of hiking. I felt like it was too much but I told myself, "Just go for it, you can do this." How optimist...

So I planned it with my friends, Amir, Fitri & Nizam. This time I was not the only girl because my sister, Dina also joined us. We joined a trip which we found on Twitter, dealt with the person in charge we called 'Bear'.

We were so excited that we even bought Gunung Ledang t-shirts together!

We gathered at Hutan Lipur Gunung Ledang around 7 am to collect the shirts, changed, had few photos of us & warm up before the journey started.

We started hiking around 7.45 am. Our hike started with loads & loads of stairs! They call it as Tangga Mahligai which consists around 700 flights of stairs. Stairway to Heaven, huh?

After that freaking stairs we reached the first checkpoint, Bukit Semput. Here, you can see everyone 'semput' already. Some even said that it was hard. Well, you can't be walking up through stairs for few minutes & just give up, right?

So off we go again. There are 7 checkpoints you will need to go through before you reach the peak. It looks simple but the trails...phew!

Enjoy the greens there so that you will feel relax & forget that you have just completed 40% of the climb lol.

Take a really good rest at the 5th checkpoint, Sungai Segi Tiga because the trail that waited for you after is ten times more difficult than before. No joke. So take something to eat to replenish your lost energy. You will need that later.

This river also is the only water point when you going up the mountain. You can refill your water here. According to the guider, the water is safe to drink but the convincing part is up to you. You can bring more litres of water on your own but think again. The more water you bring, the heavier your beg will be & the more energy you will need to climb. The decision is all up to you.

Among us, Amir was the most convinced one. He drank that water without doubt! While I kept thinking what if I die drinking that water haha.

I was not so worried about my water supply because half of them were carried by Nizam. Thank you, my brother!

But don't worry, Amir was just fine. Even until now, he is so active & healthy! The water didn't harm him in any way. Alhamdulillah.

After having enough rest at Sungai Segi Tiga, you will reach Gua Kambing. No, no goat there, just a little 'selit-menyelit' journey. You will start to cry at Laluan KFC. Also no Kentucky Fried Chicken there. It is the most killing one, Killing Fitness Centre.

There are so many ladders need to be climbed. You will feel like there is no end to it. I stopped for few times to catch my breath. It was so extremely tiring only Allah knows.
Other than those ladders, you will also need to do rope climbing. So it is not just your legs that are needed to be strong, your hands too!

You will really need to use your energy to the max I swear!

Brace! Brace! Brace! Use all the availability of energy you have!

Know that you have completed 70% of the climb along these difficult journey. It is a shame for you to give up.

The funny moment when I was busy trying to climb a really big rock that I climbed just like a Spiderman sticking on a big rock lol but unfortunately, I lost control because the rock was slippery & almost fell backwards.

Guess what? Fitri was right behind me!

He shockedly held & pushed my bag & asked, "Kau dah kenapa? Okay tak? Pegang kuat kuat, jangan lepas."

I kept saying, "Aaaaaa tak boleh!" but I did it anyway haha. With his help.

Imagine if he didn't manage to hold my bag from behind, I will fall on him & he will definitely fall on the person just right behind him at that time; Amir, the smallest.

The last rope climbing was the hardest!

I almost gave up at this point. I kept asking Fitri, "Macam mana kalau tak boleh buat?" "Kalau tergolek ni macam mana?" "Kalau tangan terlepas tali macam mana?"

Fitri with his relax face responded, "Boleh punya, boleh. Jangan lepas tali tu, pegang kuat kuat."

I stared at Nizam, giving him my worried sign. He said, "Arina, kau kena percayakan kasut kau."

Amir & Nizam successfully did it first so they waited at the top. I climbed together with Fitri beside me but he was faster.

Halfway of climbing, Amir with his camera at the top, "Weh korang! Berhenti kejap, ambil gambar dulu!"

My hands were both shivering, holding the rope, almost lost my energy to hold it any longer but I forced my hands because if I didn't, that would be the end of my life while Amir cheerfully just asked me to stop & took some photos?! Ya Allah, speechless aku sabar je la haha.

So here are the photos. Precious. So precious because it was my life & death moment.

After that nervous moment, there will be a few challenging ways to go. Just follow the trails, patiently because you are already near the top!

One of the best part is Taman Bonsai!

You can see big Bonsai trees here.

But after that you will reach Bukit Botak which is so hot. No more tall trees. That's why it is called Bukit Botak. No trees mean we are getting there. So keep it up for another 20 minutes!

& here we are, at the highest point of the mountain!

We reached here around 2 pm.

Congratulations to us! We did it!

Another moment was when we were preparing to eat Maggi, the boys boiled the water & as the water was boiling, Amir wanted to pour the water into his Maggi cup but ended up he spilled all of the water on the ground! So yea, we need to boil it again, patiently.

I can still remember the reactions of every each of them...the speechless, numb reactions to watch the water spilled, just like that haha.

As if it killed us inside because we were so hungry!

Then, Fitri made his mistake. The water was not fully boiled but he poured it in my cup & also his so our Maggi were not fully cooked I felt like eating keropok, so crunchy. Thank you Fit for ruining my Maggi. You will forever be my frenemy.

Amir was the one who insisted to wait for his Maggi to be fully cooked but we were out of time, we need to go back down as soon as possible.

You know what he did?

He walked down the mountain with his hand holding his Maggi. He ate it while walking through the challenging trail. Unbelievable.

We walked down separately.

Nizam was the fastest, followed by Amir & then me. Fitri was at the back with my sister.

Nizam & Amir successfully reached down the mountain around 6 am while Fit, my sister & me completed to journey at 9 pm! So late lol. Because of some problems such sister had cramped legs & a hiker got injured.

We also need to stop during Maghrib & waited around 8 to continue the journey. During that time, Amir & Nizam called me (your phone can still works well in this forest) & kept asking, "Kau dekat mana? Lama lagi ke nak sampai? Ok baik baik tau kitorang tunggu."

Still got time for this. Lol.

Even Fitri & my sister called me asking where am I when they couldn't see me until we met at the same point to go down together.

Phone is still important in the forest...

Overall, the journey was so extremely challenging but so much fun! Even though I broke my own nail at the end, the hike was really worth the effort!

Big thank you to Fitri for sacrificing himself by waiting for us & walked down together instead of just leaving faster for his own good.

Also to Nizam for carrying my water, for always asking me if I was okay & to Amir for being my photographer.

We then ate our late dinner together with our zombie walking style plus our tired faces because we were that exhausted.

I'm glad for this moment. Gunung Ledang was difficult to climb but so much lessons I got & so much moments were created.

Thank you for reading!

Tuesday, January 23, 2018

Gunung Irau, Cameron Highlands

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Mount Irau was the most challenging one other than the mountains I've hiked before. Why?

Mount Irau was the 4th mountain I've hiked, which I chose to join a team that I didn't even have anyone that I know, personally. I was that brave because I really really wanted to hike Mount Irau. The eagerness was so real I swear! Haha. But none of my friends wanted to go with me so I decided to just go on my own.

I booked mine months before with the person in charge, Kak Mirza whom I've known during I hiked Mount Ledang before. She just helped to handle those who joined but didn't hiked together with us.

About the transportation, I bravely asked one by one based on our Whatsapp group of our team to look for anyone that could give me a ride to go there. It was quite insane because I didn't know them at all! It was a risk that I might be with someone whom couldn't be trusted you know! But Alhamdulillah everything was fine. Big thank you to Kak Ain, Kak Iera & Kak Ekyn!

I planned & be prepared smoothly possible before the day came to make sure everything would be just fine since I chose to go through this alone.

We departed around 3 am on 23rd of April 2017 from Kuala Lumpur & took a break at a mosque which located at Brinchang to perform prayer & continued for a short nap.

After that, we waited near Nova Highlands Resort & Residence for 4x4 wheels. It was quite late because of some unexpected problems.

We finally departed around 8 am & the journey was so much fun! We got to see the tea plantations, the view was so breathtaking!

I was glad that my hands were both strong during the journey so that I didn't fall down until we arrived at the starting point as the 4x4 wheels was so extremely fast I felt like flying!

& here is our photo before we started hiking It was so cold that the steam/smoke came out from our mouths! Fresh morning!

The journey was long, even to just reach 'Anak Irau' because unexpectedly, it was raining which made it hard to go through the mud. Irau trails was full of mud that my legs got stuck for few times. Hence, the trail was slippery.

Luckily, I got to take photos before the rainfall.

The trails I can say, not so difficult. It just got hard when it was raining. Other than that, you just have to go through the mud carefully okay. I don't prefer for you to wear sport shoes, you will just damage it, terribly. Use 'kasut getah' where you can find at Mr. DIY!

Do you know what is best about Mount Irau? Its mossy forest! I was really excited to watch it with my own two eyes! Subhanallah so beautiful!

I was quite slow that I finally reached the peak at 2 pm. I slipped down few minutes before. My left leg injured. Thank you Allah someone managed to grab my bag real fast to save me from falling further. I was already wet, my raincoat didn't really help, plus the mud around my legs, the heavy rain, I turned out to be so pale at the peak. I was so cold, the 3 clothes I wore also didn't help until I started to shiver. Everyone was quite worried.

I, myself knew that I've became weak. But I still pushed myself to the max. I kept telling myself that I need to end this trip successfully no matter what. So I took a rest, ate at the peak, while waiting for the heavy rain to slowly stop & be okay as fast as possible. I took few photos with them as well, not showing how I really felt that time; cold & weak. I just didn't want to burden anyone.

However, a man then brought my bag during we started to walk down the mount because he said I look so pale already. I walked down 'lenggang-kangkung'. Big thank you to him! & few of the team took care of me until we finally reached our end point around 7 pm & served me with hot noodles as I was extremely cold, I needed something hot to stabilize my body temperature.

Then I was okay again.

Still, it was fun & I can finally ticked Mount Irau on my list! Yeay!

This trip taught me a lot. One of them is, keep pushing myself to be so strong no matter the barriers. It was worth the effort! Thank you to those who helped me a lot during this trip, I really appreciate it. May Allah bless all of them.

Tips :

1) Use 'kasut getah'.
2) Bring enough food & snacks because the coldness makes us hungry! 
3) Preferred to also bring small gas hiking stove, hot food/drink during cold weather is a really great combination!
4) Bring gloves as well if you know you can't really stand cold weather.
5) Raincoat is a must because the weather is unpredictable.
6) Wear thick clothes!

Can't wait to tell you about other experience I went through.

Thank you for reading!