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23 June 2009

A Wonderful Experience to Mount Kinabalu

By Chu

The day before 5th June, I was having my leisure reading at the forum on those participants who hike before Mount Kinabalu. After reading one of it, immediately I rushed to purchase an extendable hiking stick. What a last minute!

On 5th June, together with the team, we departed from Penang airport at about 10.20am and reaching Kinabalu airport at 1pm and after that direct heading to Mesilau resort for a rest. Along the way, we stopped by at a Dairy Farm with the hope to approach closer to the cow to snap some photos. But to no avail, we arrived pretty late and were advised to make a visit next time. The greenery field was beautiful. If you were to snap a photo and show it to other people, they might think that it is New Zealand : )

On 6th June, that was the exciting moment everyone was waiting for. Getting our baggage to weigh and after that, go go go!! Our journey to Laban Rata started from Mesilau trail. We were told by our guide that the time taken to reach Laban Rata might be around 8 hours, later or earlier which depend on our ability. Looking at my watch and it was about 8.20am. My goodness, another 8 hours, it means my target time to reach was about 5pm. I can’t imagine how I would look like by that time. Pheww….

Walking up the trail for the first 15 minutes, it seems great as everyone walked pretty smoothly. By the time reaching the first signage indicating “KM0.5”, everyone was so excited at the number and posted for a photo. After that, everyone was counting the time when will the next signage be arrived. How come after walking for so long and yet the signage still hasn’t arrive yet…arghhhh. When hours passed by, it was a challenge not only to the physical but mental as well. For the first few KM, we rewarded ourselves by resting at each signage for photo capturing. When the distance went longer, the hike duration grew longer, the fatigue experienced grew greater. By that time, some walked faster, some walked slower. We were separated and became a smaller group.

The part I enjoyed the most along the Mesilau trail was the view. It is like a wonder world. If you watch “The Chronicles of Nardia” before, certain part of the forest is just like what I observed along the Mesilau trail. Once hiked until certain height, you will observe that the landscape is different. There is full of Bonzai a long the way. If you were to purchase a Bonzai locally, you will need to take care of it, trim and prune it. Just imagine, over the hill, it is full of Bonzai with different sizes being big and small, tall and short….and yet all of it is taken care by nature. That is the power of nature! I was amazed and appreciated the art of nature that shaping the trees to different sizes.

After 4 to 5 hours of hiking, I started to realize that the hiking stick was my best companion in the world! Never had I felt so contented that the decision I made to purchase it was perfectly right even though it was a last minute decision. Now I really understand the usage of it to support me not only up hill, but down hill as well. Wow…I just love it so much. Together with my teammate, we floundered with the stick and managed to reach Laban Rata at about 5.10pm which took us about 8.5 hours. Without the hiking stick, I am sure we will stretch even longer to reach. What a super tiring journey. What’s more I can do in Laban Rata but to rest, rest & rest to recuperate my fitness. Although I experienced slight headache, Panadol did a great job!

At 2am morning the next day, we were ready. Chockfull of energy bars were loaded into our smaller bag for half-way re-fuel. We started the next mission at 2.30am headed up. Weather was pretty great with windy but was advised again if there were to rain, we will need to revert back to the camp for safety purposes. God bless that the no rain pelted down and we moved on slow and steady with multiple stop to rest. Some of my teams managed to reach earlier. As for me, I took my own sweet time to rest and hike. Well, I was happy that I managed to reach about 6.15am morning. Cool…a small platform with signage indicating altitude 4095.2m from sea level, a platform that most people wanted to take photo with. Yeah, together we took a group photo which will engrave in my mind for very long time to come. Standing on the peak viewing down, it was like heaven. The view was awesome and I was very happy that I made it to the peak.

Life is about journey and not a destination. Same goes to hiking, I am very happy to reach the peak. But I felt even greater by having the opportunity to view what nature had endowed us along the journey which I enjoyed very much. We were very lucky that during our journey from bottom to the top, no rain pelted down that hindering our journey. By the time descending down the hill, it was the most challenging moment as compared to hiking up. My leg was so tired but to endure the pain going down via Timpohon trail. Pheww…thanks to my hiking stick that supported me to brace through the impact. Together with some of my teammates, we reached safely at 3.50pm via Timpohon station and headed back to Kinabalu Park for a rest and certificate purchased.

Well, the hike was no easy for sure. It was pretty challenging on certain area that needed the rope to hike at a steep angle. It was a wonderful experience after all. With normal training, I am sure everyone who wishes to conquer Mount Kinabalu is not an issue at all. Overall, we had an enjoyable trip after the hike where we rested our self in Poring and enjoyed a dip in the hot spring relaxing our muscles before a night stay in KK town.

Well, I waited for this moment and the moment waited for me.
I just wanted to shout that “YES….I MADE IT FINALLY!!”

Have a nice day!

  • Soo Yin

    Congrats for reaching the summit of Mt Kinabalu. I could relate to what you wrote. I can’t help but to remember how it felt like when I went to Mt. KK for the 2nd time last year.

    We haven’t tried the Mersilau trail yet, perhaps I’ll try that trial the next time!

  • Chu

    Hello Soo Yin, thanks a lot.
    Btw, is a must try using Mesilau trial…although the trail is longer, but it is a worth with beautiful scenery accompanying you. You will see a lot of squirrel too.

    Your next time..will be your 3rd time. Hats off!

  • Jasmine

    Hi, congrats. I went to Mount KK on the same day with you too but we used Timpohan Trail. That was my first time to Mt KK & managed to reach the peak. Hopefully next time still got chances to hike Mt KK via Mesilau Trail.

  • Din Effendi

    Congrats Chu, you did it. It’s not that easy to reach to the top. Did you manage to see any Rafflesia along the trail?

  • Chu

    Hello Jasmine…congratulation to you too! Yeah..is a must to try out the Mesilau trail! Probably if given a chance, I would go the 2nd time too :)

    Hello Effendi, thanks lot :)
    Rafflesia, I asked that question too..haha. The porter told me Rafflesia was at other site which I had no idea the area he mentioned to me :) I only saw those huge pitcher plants. Very beautiful.