March 30, 2010

No one should claim to have “found” any part the Klang Gate Ridge, it was there already thousands of years ago.

This is a section of the Klang Gate Range that is not explored by many. As a matter of fact, not many people knew of this stretch. Early last year, we did some research on the internet and checked out the nearby area to see how we go about hiking up the peak. Finally in July last year, we managed find a route into this area and cut our way up to the peak. We were quite excited however we did not really put too much hype on that place. I wrote a short story about it on my blog and later posted it to on the internet.

Early this year, I got to know a group of trekkers and thinking that we all share the same passion, I introduced to them this section of the ridge and later I took them to attempt the peak again. However, we were not successful as the leaves and bushes had covered up the trail to the peak. We cannot find a way to the peak and abandoned our attempt after several hours.

Then last week, the same group of trekkers made another attempt on the peak and this time they were successful. I congratulate them. Of course they were excited (as we were when we reached the peak) and many pictures were taken and posted. I saw these nice pictures.

However I was disappointed when they claimed they have “found” this peak and put a name to it. No one can deny that they have reached the peak and all credits to the group for their great attempt. But to stake a claim to say that they found the peak and name it, I feel that it is not appropriate.

My group and I have been to the peak long before them … and before us, we know of other groups that have gone up to the same peak. We did not stake any claim or put a name to it, nor did all the groups before us. We just said that we found a way to the peak of this section of the Klang Gate Ridge. Nobody should claim to have found it and give it a name … it was there all the while. Even Sir Edmund Hillary did not claim that he found the peak of the highest mountain in the world … he just claimed he was the first to scaled it. Later there were stories that it was the shepa guide, Tenzing Norgay who reached the peak first … anyway, both did not claim to have “found” the highest peak in the world. It was there already. They just reached it.

I now regretted that I took this group of people to this part of the ridge. I only have this to say … we are all passionate trekkers and nature lovers, sharing our experiences and stories of places we have been so that it will benefit other trekkers as well. My advice to all … be humble, no need to show off … the whole range of Klang Gate Ridge is for everyone … no one should claim that they have found any part of this beautiful ridge. It was there already thousands of years ago.

March 19, 2010

Panjang no more ...

Regular trekkers at Gunung Angsi will definitely know the Panjang's Kopitiam rest point along the Bukit Putus – Gunung Angsi trail. This place was built by a very good man for the benefit of all trekkers at Gunung Angsi. Unfortunately I never had the opportunity to meet this person. At this rest point you can help yourself with the food stuffs available and of course also pay whatever you think is appropriate so that the money can be used to replenish the food stuffs for the benefit of all trekkers at Gunung Angsi. Sunday trekkers will remember the “tong sui” (sweet desert) offered at Panjang’s Kopitiam.

Panjang's Kopitiam as it used to be

Trekkers can help themselves to food stuffs available here and put in their contributions accordingly

But Panjang's Kopitiam is no longer available. The last time we trekked up to Gunung Angsi via Bukit Putus, we were disappointed to see that someone dismantled and burned down the place. What is left is a pile of burnt rubbish. What a dissappointment ! I was told by some local trekkers that the forest rangers are responsible for this. I don’t know why the rangers did that. Yes, I must say that the rest point is built without permission from the forestry department but hey, I am sure the local rangers can show a bit of compassion and consideration that this place was built for the good and benefit of trekkers at Gunung Angsi. I think all trekkers at Gunung Angsi will agree with me.

What is left of the place now

Anyway, whatever that is done cannot be undone. I want to thank the good man for all that he has done for the trekkers at Gunung Angsi. Whoever and wherever he is now, I am sure we all will remember his good intentions, contributions and of course the unique Panjang’s Kopitiam.

March 09, 2010

Tail or tale?

Let me tell you a tail … oops ... I mean a tale of happiness. This is how it goes … a young puppy asked his mother "Where is happiness?"  The mother replied "It's on your tail." So the young puppy keeps on chasing after his tail, going round and round. But after a whole day of trying, he failed to get the happiness that was on his tail. Then he told his mother about it and his mother smiled and said "Son, you don't really need to chase after your happiness, as long as you keep going with whatever you have, your happiness will always be with you."

I am sure you see the wisdom of the above tale … you don’t have to chase for happiness, keep moving with whatever you have, live within whatever you can afford and happiness will always be following right behind you. Don’t be blinded by chasing for materialistic possessions. When you see a relative buys a big house, doesn’t mean you have to own a big house too. When a colleague uses the latest IPhone, doesn’t mean that you have to get one to match. When your neighbour buys a new car, doesn’t mean you have to drive a better one to show.

Hey, I am not saying that you have to live like a pauper … if you can afford it, by all means go get it. You have struggled to build a successful life, so you should enjoy the fruits of your success. The wisdom here is, don't keep on chasing. Somewhere, somehow, you must know when to stop. Are you getting something that you really need? Or you are always chasing just to show that you have bigger, better and more possessions than others?

If you keep chasing, it just goes round and round … it will never end. There are no free things in this world. Whatever you are chasing after there is always a price to pay. And when you realise that it has started to affect your health, your loved ones, your family and friends, it is already too late. And worse, many keep chasing without realising that it has already turned into greed … and with greed comes a host of troubles.

One must know, when enough is really enough. So, how much is enough? You decide. You can keep chasing the tail, on and on, round and round … or you embrace the wisdom of the tale above. So, it is up to you … tail or tale?

March 01, 2010

4 men and a coconut tree

When we first trekked up Gunung Angsi, we noticed that some good fellow trekkers have planted various types of trees and flowers at the peak. One of my fellow trekkers asked “Eh … why people don't plant coconut trees at the peak … can coconut trees grow at high altitude?” Now seriously, it never struck my mind to look out for coconut trees while trekking but I thought I saw coconut trees planted in some areas in Genting Highlands. The question was “Will it grow on top of mountains?” The weather is kind of cool and dry at high altitude areas.

No need to ask too many questions, let’s try it out … we will plant a coconut tree on the peak of mountains we trekked and see if it will grow. And when the 4 of us went to Gunung Angsi on the 30th Jan 2010, we brought along a young coconut tree.

Trekking up Gunung Angsi is fairly easy via the Bukit Putus trail. I have not trek up via the Ulu Jempul waterfall but was told that it is a bit longer but is also a fairly easy trail. We normally like to trek up from Bukit Putus. Starting from Bukit Putus, the trail is wide and easy and in no time we reached Panjang Kopitiam rest point.

Arriving at Panjang Kopitiam

Two trails, the right trail is easier to trek

From here, there are two trails ... the easier trail is the right side while the other is a tougher trail. We always like to take the tough trail up and the other way when coming down. So after a short rest we continue to trek up and it was easy going all the way. Very soon we reach the second resting point and took another breather here.

On a good day, the Angsi trail is quite windy and very cooling ... it is one of the trails I enjoyed trekking very much. If you come early, you can see the beautiful morning sun beams penetrating through the tree tops plus the nice smell of fresh morning dew.

Finally we reached the top of Angsi and after a quick rest we continue with our task … find a place to plant the coconut tree. We found a good spot and quite easily we planted the coconut tree. We are keeping our fingers crossed and hope that it will grow in the cool dry climate on top of the Angsi peak.

Task accomplished - we hope this coconut tree will grow and bear fruits

The Angsi peak at 825m above sea level

While at the peak, we met with another group of trekkers from nearby the area. After a few words with them, we were told that the nearby Kuala Pilah town have good “turtle soup mee” to offer. Then we met a few young Malays boys … they look like some sort of recruits and when we asked them we were told they are recruits from the prison authority. Was told there were 70 of them on the way up. So we decided to descend before the big noisy crowd reach the peak.

On the way down our minds were all thinking about the “turtle soup mee” and in about 2 hours, we made it to the base of Bukit Putus. After a quick wash up at a water pipe near the abandoned shack opposite the road, we went into Kuala Pilah town in search of the “turtle soup mee” place and found it near the town’s market. Now when the food came, we were all shaking our heads … not as what we expected. Put it this way, I am NOT recommending it. But the consolation was the chendol we ordered at the nearby stall … that was GOOD chendol!

After the meal, we headed home and on the way we stopped at a roadside stall to savour a few “kampung” durians and also bought some duck eggs (good for fried kwey teow). Overall, it was a good day out … it’s always a good outing when we trek Gunung Angsi. We will be back very soon to check on our coconut tree.