Friday, May 14, 2010

mt kinabalu, here i come

i am climbing mt kinabalu this june with ian, my son-in-law, and five of his church friends from melbourne. mt kinabalu is the highest peak in south-east asia. climbing the mountain has been one of the things on my 'to do list' following my retirement in 2007.

i had been naive enough to think that all i needed to do was to fly to kota kinabalu and from there make my way to the base camp to begin my climb. i was not aware of the number of procedures that needed to be adhered to before you could access the peak.

one of the requirements is a climbing permit. a climbing permit costs rm$100 for a non-malaysian. it is also compulsory to have a licenced guide to lead the group to the summit. in addition to these, all climbers need to pay rm$7 each for insurance fee.

the climb will normally take two days. most trekkers start their climb at timpohon gate near the park headquarters (1800m) with an overnight stay at one of the guest houses at laban rata (3273m) before pushing to the summit at an unearthly hour, usually around 3.30 a.m. after visiting the official website, i now understand the rationale for the need to wake up at 2.30 a.m. to prepare for the push.

fortunately, i have someone in my saturday's walking group who has successfully reached the summit in march this year. she has been giving me useful tips on what to take along and how to prepare myself for the climb.

in fact, last sunday she sacrificed her beauty sleep to introduce me to the training route/trail at bukit timah nature reserve that her group had used in their preparation for the assault on mt kinabalu.

some of the items that i have secured for the climb include the miner's lamp - the torch that you wear on your forehead, the china-made telescopic trekking poles and a pair of non-slip gloves. i also have my rain-coat, leather jacket and woollen gloves.


JollyGreenP said...

It is a wonderful experience YG and it really stretches your muscles. Be sure to have at least two woollen jumpers or cardigans with you in case the rest house is full and you have to stay overnight in the bunk house just below the summit. It gets very cold during the night there and you will almost certainly want to sleep fully clothed with an extra jumper on.

Lam Chun See said...

Sir, I salute you. My plan is to climb Mt Ophir one day. Even then it's for the nostalgia and not the physical challenge; so I will probably go for the easy route.

But YG; please do be careful. Have to face up to the fact that you are not young anymore. Recently my friend's daughter, who is in poly came back from a climbing trip to Mt Kinabalu with a limb that last several days. Apparently her buddies had to carry her down.

kiatsan said...

Oh. I will like to visit and climb Mt Kinabalu someday too. Have to try before. Heard the scenery is nice.

All the best for your upcoming climb & do be extra careful along the way. :)

yg said...

john, thanks for the advice and info. will definitely take along some woollen clothing.

yg said...

chun see, i have heard two cases of climbers who fell and had to be carried on a stretcher down the mountains.
besides being fit, you also need to have the proper equipment. a good pair of trail shoes will help.

yg said...

guan kiat, thanks. i am sure you will have no problem reaching the summit. in fact, they have an annual 21km race up the mountain (mt kinabalu).

kiatsan said...

Okay. Do take more photos during your climb & post in blog or Facebook.

Yes. I heard about that race before. :)
It is called "climbathon". Below is the link to this event.

I think it needs some preparation and trial climb to Mt Kibabalu first before participating in such a race.

Victor said...

All the best for the climb, YG. Er... no need to go for medical check-up first?

yg said...

victor, thanks for your concern. that's what my daughter (doctor) ordered. anyway, i have been going for my regular check-up and i had my ecg done recenly.

roltancc said...

Mt Kinabalu is really awesome!!

Although I have been there many times while I was based in K.K. It never come across my mind to climb it.

Yg, you're just as awesome!! climbing it!!