Tuesday, October 10, 2017

A Challenging Wet Hike at Gunung Liang

Standing at 1,933m, Gunung Liang is a tough mountain to hike: it is tougher than hiking up to Gunung Nuang peak (1,459m). While the elevation gain of Nuang peak is 1,260m (from Ulu Langat), Liang peak is 1,730m – about 500 meters more. 

Do CLICK HERE to view photos courtesy of ChongYF.

Special thanks to Vince Khor for being the Team Lead; Hooi Miin for contributing a few of her photos.

Click on any photo for actual display size (and zoom in); do scroll down the page for GPS coordinate to trailhead carpark.
A group photo at the trailhead carpark ... (back, L-R) KC Leong, Adrian Foo, SC Yong, Bruno, Serena, Teh, Soo, Low, Uncle Lim; (middle, L-R) Vince Khor, Lana, Yoke Leng, Ann Lim, Hooi Miin; (front) Ivy Wong, Shu-Ling.

We took 6 hours to arrive at the Liang peak in moderate pace with a terrain that has hardly any level ground to rest. With one hour of rest at the peak, the returning journey was not very much faster due to continuous rain and slippery ground. Total time taken was about 13 hours. 

Yeah! We made it to the peak of Gunung Liang

Mossy Forest – Other than arriving at the peak, the other highlight was that Liang West with the unique mossy forest, a better landscape compares to Gunung Irau of Cameron Highlands. Within a 5-minute walk, the scenery was totally different. You need to be there to see or experience the distinction in landscape. Liang East is a tropical landscape with a collapsed metal pyramid on a clearing, whereas Liang West is of temperate feel with the mossy forest.
At Gunung Liang West ... photo courtesy of Hooi Miin (using iPhone 7)

(a) Gradually going up until Lubuk campsite/final river crossing;
(b) Steeper slope until 7E campsite (similar to Kem Lolo of G. Nuang going up to Kem Pacat);
(c) Steep slope till peak, and many areas require both hands to pull oneself up (similar to Kem Pacat going up to False Peak).
The mossy forest of Gunung Liang West


Wet Weather – The hike at Gunung Liang (Tanjung Malim, Perak) on Sat 7 Oct 2017 started with wet weather in the wee hours of the morning. Unperturbed by the heavy rain while travelling in five cars to Behrang toll exit via PLUS Highway, the group continued the journey from Kuala Lumpur. Even at the brief stop of Behrang toll exit, it was still drizzling. We pressed on, and we would made a final decision at the trailhead. We were happy that the rain stopped – the hike was On! Otherwise, we might consider a food trip at Ipoh as Plan B.

2:00 a.m. – drizzle in Kuala Lumpur
5:00 a.m. – heavy rain in Kuala Lumpur
6:00 a.m. – drizzle at Behrang toll exit
6:30 a.m. – rain stopped when we arrived at trailhead carpark
10:30 a.m. – rain
3:00 p.m. – rain
Risky river crossing at Lubuk campsite amid swelling river and swift current

With the continuous rain, the river swelled. For the descent journey, the leading group was stuck at Lubuk campsite for two hours not able to cross the river since 4:45 p.m. When nightfall was drawing near at 6:30p.m., risking our life, we crossed the river amid swift current with the help of campers.

Getting There – travelling time from Kuala Lumpur to Behrang Inbound Toll Plaza is about one hour; travelling to the trailhead is another 30 minutes. 

GPS coordinates:
Exit at Behrang Inbound Toll Plaza: 3.739872, 101.459412
Trailhead carpark: 3.797754, 101.522888

Preparation – It is important that one must have good physical fitness before trying Gunung Liang. This mountain is definitely not for the beginners. For endurance training, it is best carried out at Gunung Nuang first via Pangsoon, Ulu Langat. Because of the long duration in the hike, having a bright headlamp (with new batteries), proper rain gear, sufficient food and drinking water are mandatory requirements.

Post-event joke: On Sunday (a day after the Liang hike), my relatives came to my house in the afternoon. Then in the evening, I went to pasar malam to buy fruits. Walking with my sandals (bought from Giant hypermarket), I felt that they were a little small. I guessed that must be mistakenly exchanged by my relatives when they left. At night just before I slept, I looked at my feet. They were swollen due to intense hiking the day before, and partly caused by leeches bite. On Monday morning (the following day), the feet went back to their original size, and the sandals fit again.

Posted by KC Leong

Thursday, September 28, 2017

Zhineng Qigong Mooncake Gathering

Zhineng qigong gathering for celebrating mid-autumn mooncake festival at USJ Wawasan School on Wednesday, 27 Sept 2017 ... the event was attended by 200 members with Gina Lim laoshi conducting the qigong practice and introducing her book, Go with the Flow. 

Do CLICK HERE to view photos courtesy of yours truly (KC Leong).
 Items and tokens for lucky draws
 Lots of food to cater for the 200 participants
 Yes, the yummy Kajang satay
 Stretching exercise for everyone (conducted by Vincent Khoo laoshi)
 All laoshi posing with the headmistress of USJ Wawasan school 
 A talk on practising qigong by Gina Lim laoshi

Posted by KC Leong

Monday, September 25, 2017

A Memorable Pine Tree Trail Hike

“Brother, would you mind if you sit over there so that I could take the photos of the ladies,” I interrupted the conversation of an elderly gentleman who was sitting there having his afternoon tea with his friend at the World of Phalaenopsis, Hulu Yam Bharu on 22 Sept 2017. He gladly did. We proceeded with the photos shoot.

Do CLICK HERE to view photos courtesy of yours truly. 

Do CLICK HERE to view photos (on the hiking journey of Pine Tree trail to Twin Peak) courtesy of ChongYF using a new Sony A6000.

Later, the elderly gentleman spoke to us; from the tone of the conversation, OMG he is the boss of the entire orchid farm!  :-)

He was so kind and friendly to take us for a tour of his orchid farm where the flowers are hotly sought after and distributed throughout Peninsula M’sia. He patiently explained the various details and processes to us. With the expanding business, his company requires three times the current work force.
 (L-R): Miki Cheah, Ivy Wong, Shu-Lin and Lana
A group photo with Mr Steven Cheong, the boss of this orchid farm (back, centre)

After the surprised tour, we proceeded with our lunch and continued our journey to Fraser’s Hill. It was fun staying in a lodge where the entire 16 team members were able to mingle together with good camaraderie. The weather at Fraser's Hill was cooling with brief moments of slight drizzles. Amidst the cool evening, sitting outside the lodge sipping drinks, chatting, joking and laughing silly was a moment to cherish. 
3D2N in this lodge at Fraser's Hill ... (front L-R): Miki Cheah, Shu-Lin, LeeWY, Ivy Wong, ChongYF, Karen Lee, CK Toh, Abbie, Jessica, Kwai Yin; (back): Amelia, ChanHN, Lee Guat Choo, KC Leong, Edwin How, George Siew, Lana.
 Do you see what I see? ... 
The 'yow yeng' team 

Looking for tarantula spiders – at night, we went to look for spiders; one of the tarantula species is found only at this hill resorts and nowhere else in the world. Most of the time, it was ChongYF who would shine and look for the spiders’ nests (round hole by the hill slope). This time, we have a new learner, Miki Cheah, who learned fast how to induced the spider by using a stick. It was quite fun enticing them to crawl out from their nests. After a few attempts of not able to lure the spiders to crawl out, George Siew suggested to try lady’s saliva to see the different. It was quite a funny moment seeing the ladies spitting on to the end of the stick. There was one spider who was very energetic that it crawled onto Miki’s stick that gave Miki the scare.
 Looking for tarantula spiders ... Miki enticing them to crawl out with a stick 
One of the spider species

Timing of Pine Tree Trail hike on Day2 (23 Sept 2017, Saturday):
8:00 a.m. – started hiking from the trailhead 
10:30 a.m. (2.5 hours) – arrived at the first peak
11:30 a.m. – one hour of rest
12 noon (30 min) – arrived at Twin Peak
12:15 p.m. – started the descent journey
3:00 p.m. – returned to trailhead with a round trip of 7 hours (4:00 p.m. for those who were slower).

Do take note that application of permit is required to hike Pine Tree trail (from Pejabat Hutan Daerah Raub dan Cameron Highlands) and the fee is RM10 for each hiker. 
On Day-3, we proceeded to Jeriau Waterfall to have a dip in the water – the water was cold. We later checked-out of the lodge and have our lunch at Kuala Kubu Baru en route to Kuala Lumpur. It was a good and satisfying hike with short stay in the cool hill resorts. 
 Having fun at Jeriau waterfall
The three wise monkeys "see no evil, hear no evil, speak no evil"

Posted by KC Leong

Wednesday, September 20, 2017

Beruas Buddies Reunion at Kundasang

A 4D3N reunion holiday trip at Kundasang, Kota Kinabalu with my Beruas hometown schoolmates from 16 to 19 September 2017 ... During the carefree days when we were young, it was such a fun that we would cycled the entire neighbourhood together. It was good to see the hometown schoolmates again reminiscing the good old days. Beruas (previously spelled as Bruas) is a small town in Manjung District, Perak; the closest big towns are Ipoh, Taiping, Sitiawan, etc.

Do CLICK HERE to view photos courtesy of yours truly, KC Leong.

 My Beruas hometown schoolmates ...(back, left): KC, WooKW, TiongKH, LingCH, Jackie Liew, Tan Swee Ho, Thomas, ChongCL; (front, left): Wendy Tan, HeaDing, Jean, Belinda Chong, Annie Kwa, LeYoan, Loo Kui Hiong, Ang ML, LingJY.
 Putting up two nights at H. Benjamin Residence hotel in Kundasang with a view of the back of Mount Kinabalu
 Visiting Desa Dairy cattle farm in Kundasang 
 Visiting Sabah Tea plantation; this is a much smaller plantation compares to Boh Tea plantation in Cameron Highlands
 Having a dip in the Poring Hotspring
 Steamboat dinner in H. Benjamin hotel
 Visiting Kinabalu National Park ... a misty morning
 Walking across the Tamparuli wooden bridge, built in 1930's by the British
 Visiting 3D Wonders Museum with the first Upside Down House in M'sia
 Sumptuous seafood dinner at Tung Fong Seafood Restaurant in Inanam; the food is good and the price is reasonable
Walking along the waterfront of Kota Kinabalu

Posted by KC Leong

Thursday, September 07, 2017

Froghill Tasik Gelugor / Lombong Guar Petai of Penang / 大马九寨溝

During the short stay at Kuala Kurau on 2 Sept 2017, we decided to visit the scenic areas of Froghill Tasik Gelugor / Lombong Guar Petai of Bukit Mertajam, Penang as people affectionately called it M'sia Jiuzhaigou 大马九寨溝. 

After going through the uneven earth-based road for about 1km, we were really excited to see the pools with the blue and turquoise water: they are abandoned mining areas. In one of the small pools, a few of the local boys were having a good time swimming in the water. 

(scroll down for Google Maps GPS coordinates and how to get there)

We were there at noon and the sun was high up in the cloudless sky. Maybe it would be good to go there during evening for the sunset photos shoot.

Do CLICK HERE to view photos courtesy of yours truly, KC Leong.

Why it is called Frog Hill? In this photo, the isolated brown-top hill somewhere on the left actually looks like the shape of a frog (as informed to me by my friend after visiting the place) … Ahhh, I missed that!

Google Maps GPS coordinates and how to get there:

Entrance (a) At Kampung Guar Petai via Jalan Arumugam Pillai (where there is a workshop at the T-junction) –  GPS coordinates: 5.442692, 100.473156

Entrance (b) At Kampung Guar Petai via route P116 (where there is a mosque nearby: Masjid Jamek Jarak Atas) –  GPS coordinates: 5.447989, 100.482338. Note: brick kiln factory on your left. At T-junction, turn left; turning right will lead you to Entrance (a).

Posted by KC Leong

Tuesday, September 05, 2017

Kuala Kurau: Great place for a short stay

I went to Kuala Kurau, Perak for a short stay from 31 Aug to 3 Sept 2017 (during the 5 days of long holidays) with Cindy, Tioh, Brenda and Annie ... The activities are:

(a) Fishing at a fish-farming platform on the river mouth of Kuala Kurau

(b) Taking a boat ride to the sea to see dolphins and sunset

(c) Witnessing the procession of Ghost Festival or Zhongyuan Festival or Yulan Festival (traditional Chinese: 盂蘭節)

(d) Visiting Froghill / Tasek Gelugor also known as M'sia Jiuzhaigou 大马九寨沟 (at Bukit Mertajam of Penang).

Do CLICK HERE here to view photos courtesy of yours truly, KC Leong.

 At the fish-farming platform located just at the river mouth of Kuala Kurau ... a worker is feeding the fishes confined in the nets
 Cindy happily showing the fish that she catches ... fishing has to be outside the net (not the farmed fishes)
 Taking a boat ride to the sea to see dolphins and sunset; we could not see any dolphins, neither it is a colourful sunset
 At Froghill / Tasek Gelugor also known as M'sia Jiuzhaigou 大马九寨沟 
 The pools with the blue and turquoise water
 Scenic landscape
 The local boys having a good fun in the clear-water pool
 Witnessing the procession of Ghost Festival at the main street of Kuala Kurau on Saturday, 2 Sept 2017
 Happening moment with the prayer money throwing high into the air while shouting "Huat Ahhhh ..."
The parade with decorated lanterns of god atop of a float, pull by the worshipers; the road is full of prayer money

Do CLICK HERE for news reporting of Kuala Kurau Yulan Festival in 8TV 八度空间.

Posted by KC Leong