Sunday, July 07, 2019

Revisit Waterfall of Apek Hill

Hiking Apek Hill via Sansui Trail, and connected to the waterfall on Saturday, 6 July 2019 ... Since the day I was introduced to the Watergate extended trail of Apek Hill on 7 April 2018 (one year ago), I have been leading the hiker buddies to hike this trail for 12 consecutive times. 

During one of the hikes in heavy rain recently, we cut short the distance by using Sansui Trail to Station 5; I reckon that it was good for us to go back to the waterfall again. So this time, we hiked via Sansui Trail and connected to the waterfall, and emerged at Saga Hilltop station.

Estimated timing:
Watergate Extended Trail - trailhead fruit stall to Saga Hill top = 3 hours;
Waterfall Trail - 15 minutes shorter.

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

 (left) Yee Mey, Stephanie Tham, Dr Kogulan, Tai, Adrian Foo, KC Leong, Rose Cheong, Lana
 At Sansui Station ... long time ago, there was a leading HiFi brand from Japan with the same name as Sansui
 Apek Hill watefall
 Apek Hill watefall
 A group photo at the waterfall
Waterfall photos shoot of Lana

Posted by KC Leong

Tuesday, July 02, 2019

Penang Durian & Gastronomic Delights

The group went to Penang for durians and savouring many of the delicious hawkers and restaurants food from 29 June to 1 July 2019 (3D2N). The durian and food in Penang are just fantastic! For those three days, we have been eating non-stop!

We managed to savour the excellent durians from the durian plantation belonging to the brother-in-law of Ms Anah. 

Special thanks to Anah and TC Chor who have been our guides, taking us around for food and sightseeing – the hospitality of Penang people is amazing and excellent!!

Do CLICK HERE to view 145 photos courtesy of yours truly, KC Leong.

 Waking around durian orchard ... (left) Ting Mei (Anah's sister-in-law), Camelia, Brenda Lee, Polly, Ivy Wong, Celine Gan, Cindy Lim, Anah, Ronnie Wong, Annie, Gin, TC Chor (not in the photo: KC Leong)
 Posing with durian orchard owner, Mr Boon (left) who is Anah's brother-in-law. Hmmm ... durians from Penang are excellent! (Black Thorn, Musang King, Red Prawn)

Day 1 Activities (Sat 29 June 2019):
(1) Driving from Kuala Lumpur at 6:30am to Penang via the Second Bridge and arrived at Balik Pulau area at 12:30pm (have breakfast in Sungai Buloh);
(2) Taking a walk in the durian orchard;
(3) The main attraction – savouring the various type of durians;
(4) Visiting Ghee Hup Nutmeg Factory;
(5) Viewing sunset at Pantai Pasir Panjang;
(6) Savouring delicious dinner at 新路头海鲜 KJB Seafood restaurant, Balik Pulau;
(7) Checking into the homestay at Arte S Condominium at Gelugor (comfortable stay; my best experience so far; recommended).
Viewing sunset at Pantai Pasir Panjang

Day 2 Activities (Sun 30 June):
(8) Breakfast at Lee Huat Cafe ... delicious curry mee, oyster porridge, roti bakar, and a lot of other nice hawkers food;
(9) Walking around Ayer Hitam dam; 
(10) Visiting Kek LoK Si Temple;
(11) Savouring ice cendol and laksa at Balik Pulau area;
(12) Visiting goat farm (enjoy feeding the goats, drinking yogurt and eating ice-cream)
(13) Visiting Botanical Garden;
(14) Visiting the swimming pool, Sky Lounge (at 41th floor) of Arte S Condominium.
 Sumptuous dinner at 新路头海鲜 KJB Seafood restaurant, Balik Pulau

Day 3 Activities (Mon 1 July):
(15) Taking tram to Penang Hill (unfortunately, the tram service was closed for 5 days for maintenance, starting that morning; so we took a walk to the Heritage Trail);
(16) Walking around Gurney Drive area; Fort Cornwallis at Padang Kota Lama, George Town;
(17) Sumptuous lunch at Tek Sen restaurant;
(18) A surprise birthday celebration for Ms Anah;
(19) Returning to Kuala Lumpur at 3:00 p.m. (arrived in KL at 7:30 p.m.).
Homestay at Arte S Condominium at Gelugor 
The swimming pool of Arte S Condominium
 Ayer Hitam dam
 Visiting goats farm
 At Botanical Garden
 Night view of Penang Bridge from the Sky Lounge (at 41th floor) of Arte S Condominium
 Starting point of Heritage Trail to Penang Hill top
 Delicious lunch at Teksen Restaurant
A surprise birthday celebration for Anah

Posted by KC Leong

Sunday, June 23, 2019

Back-to-back Hike Training

Back-to-back training at Apek Hill Cheras in preparation for the 11-day Mont Blanc trekking in July 2019.

Day 1 Saturday 22 June 2019 – It started to rain at 7:15am when we were about to start from the fruit stall at Cheras Awana. Nevertheless, the show must go on! We braced for rain and continue the hiking. The original plan was to hike via Watergate extended trail, but due to the slippery ground, we decided to cut short the distance by going through Sansui Trail and connect to Station 5.

Day 2 Sunday 23 June 2019 – we went to hike Apek Hill again via the Watergate extended trail. It was a fine weather, superb for outing. With the rain yesterday, the air was fresh and the ground was soft but not muddy. As usual, from trailhead to Saga Hill top took 3 hours. With the rest and chat at Saga Hill top, and until we returned to trailhead fruit stall, it would be 5 hours round trip. We have our lunch at the EconSave food-court. When we returned home in our comfortable car at 1:30 p.m., it started to rain heavily – so this time, we were lucky (as compared to Day 1's hike in the rain).

Do CLICK HERE to view photos in Day 1.

Do CLICK HERE to view photos in Day 2.

 (left) Ervie, Yee Mey, Rose, Adrian, Lana, Hooi Miin, Ginger Lee, GohBK, Sow Keng
 Sansui Station - nestled in the forest, it is a good place to relax
 Relaxing and chatting at Saga Hilltop station 
At Saga Hilltop

 Day 2 hiking ... (left) SC Yong, Rose, Adrian, Lana, Ginger Lee, KC Leong
 At the giant tree en route to Watergate via Ah Meng Trail
 At Watergate 
Relaxing and chatting at Sage Hilltop station


Posted by KC Leong

Tuesday, June 18, 2019

New York City (May/June 2019)

Free and easy travel with my chi gong travel buddy to northeast USA and Canada for one month from 14 May 2019.

In this photo album ... New York City (May/June 2019):
(1) Central Park of Manhattan;
(2) United Nations Headquarters;
(3) Rockefeller Centre Building;
(4) Times Square;
(5) Empire State Building;
(6) Statue of Liberty (taking a ferry to Staten Island);
(7) City Hall of New York City;
(8) Financial District of New York City; New York Stock Exchange;
(9) 9/11 Memorial Site and One World Trade Center;
(10) Chinatown of New York City;
(11) The High Line (park built into old elevated rail line 30 feet above street level);
(12) The Vessel (honeycomb-shaped structure);
(13) Strolling across the 1.5km Brooklyn Bridge;
(14) 102 Floors of One World Trade Centre Observatory Deck.

Do CLICK HERE to view 118 photos courtesy of yours truly, KC Leong.

 Central Park of Manhattan
 Statue of Liberty (taking a ferry to Staten Island)
 New York Stock Exchange
 At the Financial District of New York City
 One World Trade Center and 9/11 Memorial Site
 9/11 Memorial Site
 Strolling across the 1.5km Brooklyn Bridge to watch the vibrant sunset with spectacular view of Manhattan skyline in the background. The sun set at 8:30 p.m. in May 2019 with a very comfortable temperature of 22°C in the evening.
 Busy traffic below at Brooklyn Bridge while it is peaceful at the pedestrian level
 The High Line (park built into old elevated rail line 30 feet above street level)
 The Vessel (honeycomb-shaped structure)
 Aerial view of New York City from the 102 Floors of One World Trade Centre Observatory Deck
The two black squares are the memorial site for the two destroyed buildings in 9/11

Posted by KC Leong

Tuesday, May 07, 2019

Kuala Tahan Experience 2019

Imagine sleeping on a sandbank by a river, listening to the flow of the water cascaded through the rocks; and when one looked out of the tent in a pitch-black night, one could see the sky full of stars. There were no cars, no pollution, only the sound of insects and animals ... that was the serene life of this camping trip in the wilderness of Kuala Tahan, Taman Negara, from 3 – 5 May 2019.

Do view photos below courtesy of yours truly, KC Leong:

CLICK HERE for Highlights Album (53 photos)  A summary of the photos;

CLICK HERE for Detail Album (163 photos)  The rest of the photos (note: photos in Highlight Album are NOT repeated in the Detail Album). 
 Arriving at the jetty of Kuala Tahan, one hour journey from the nearest town, Jerantut. (left) KC Leong, TehWE, Michelle Wong, Emily Kam, ChongYF, SC Yong, Kellie Wong, Shu-Lin, Cleo (not in the photo: Josephine Hoh)
 Arriving at the campsite

Weather – In April 2019 where we experienced 11 days of heavy rain and 10 days of light drizzle resulted in flooding at many places in Kuala Lumpur, surprising it was quite dry over here in Kuala Tahan. Hence, the boat could not reach the previous camp site due to shallow water level. On Day 1 evening, the sunset was fantastic with the vibrant orange hue; not only on the west side, but reflected on the east end also. It rained at 3pm on Day 2 but for a short span of 20 minutes; everyone has to check and wipe the tents dry.  

Pitching of tents – instead of everyone setting up his or her tent, we used the gotong-royong method where a few would help to set up the tents one at a time.
 Gotong-royong in setting up the tents

Cooking – Adi and Jennifer, the Event Coordinator/ Provider, would provide a BBQ meal on Day 2 evening, or provide the add-on meals separately; or one can opt to cook on their own. 

Through experience, it is good to form a small team with guys and gals together. So ChongYF, Shu-Lin, Emily and I were on one team. While ChongYF and I were busy setting up toilet tent and clotheslines, the ladies were busy cooking meal. And when the meal was ready, Emily would shout our names at the top of her lungs as we were at the far end of the campsite still busy working. When I was small, running around in the neighbourhood, my mother would do the same when dinner was ready – a fond memory of my childhood.

They quipped that make sure ladies that could cook are identified; otherwise, not only that the guys would have to set up toilet tent, clotheslines, but still have to cook 😊
 Taking a dip in the river; the water is slightly warm (unlike the mountain water that is much colder)

Places that we have visited in this trip:
Canopy Walkway (closed for many months);
Bukit Terisek;
Lubuk Simpon;
Taman Negara Park Centre;
Orang asli settlement;
Boat cruise to Lata Berkoh rapid;
Santuari Kelah.
 Spectacular sunset with the vibrant orange hue

Team members:
KC Leong (organizer), ChongYF, SC Yong, TehWE; Emily Kam, Lim Shu-Lin, Michelle Wong, Kellie Wong, Josephine Hoh, and Cleo.

Event Coordinator/Provider: Adi and Jennifer; if you would like to experience the nice camping site and the nature, do contact Adi at +6011-3756 2106
 Relaxing and chatting on the sandy ground in the evening (Michelle, Kellie, Shu-Lin)
 Day 2 morning going to Canopy Walkway (but it was closed for many months already), and hike to Bukit Terisek
 At Lubuk Simpon ... white sandy beach and brown-looking water (actually, the water is clear)
 Yummy BBQ dinner with grilled chicken drumsticks prepared by Adi and Jennyfer
 Day 3 morning ... preparing breakfast by Emily, Shu-Lin, Kellie
 Visit of orang asli settlement; Michelle trying on the deadly blowpipe
 Exciting boat cruise to Lata Berkoh rapid and Santuari Kelah; the water is shallow and with rocks beneath. So the boatmen have to steer clear of the rock.
 Having a dip in the water at Lata Berkoh rapid; after the previous day's rain, the river water is muddy.
 Having our lunch at Santuari Kelah. We returned to the jetty at 3pm, and we could not find any public toilet to refresh - there was no water! We have to drive all the way to Termerloh Toll Plaza to take bath, almost 2 hours' drive away.
Dinner at Bukkit Tinggi (7:30pm) Restaurant 126 ... delicious and reasonable price: for seven dishes (3 dishes of meat), per pax is only RM13.50 (this is the cheapest meal that I have ever come across eating in Chinese restaurants) 

Do click here to view my previous trip at Kuala Tahan 3D2N camping in September 2018.

Posted by KC Leong