Monday, 28 March 2011

Mt Kinabalu Conquerors

Today was AMAZING!!! Melody, Kerry and I woke early (me especially early, remnants of jetlag) and hiked Mt Kinabalu. Melody and I only went halfway to the summit as it was only 3$ whereas the hike to the summit cost 300$+! The climb was brutal.  By the time we got 4km up, we had gained 3000 metres! I definitely felt a difference in the atmosphere. Melody even felt a bit of altitude sickness. I felt a bit dizzy at one point, but it quickly passed.

Melody and I selling tickets to the gun show! 

Melody and I trying our turn at rock climbing
Kerry, Melody and I on a rickety ole' bridge that felt like it was going to collapse under our combined weight....
We met up with two guys, Rick from Alaska, and Richard from Sweden. We joined up and hiked together. Melody and I lucked out, because Kerry and Richard both had guides who followed us up. So we felt quite safe. After we reached the halfway point, Layang-Layang, we all split up. Melody and I headed back down the mountain...well guess what?! It started to pour buckets again, and we got soaked...again. Also, the ground doesn't absorb the water so well, thus our hike was like wading in a creek. It was quite slippery and even though we were both wearing ponchos, we still were very damp. It was 5 hours up and down for us, breaks included...sounds like a long time for 8km I know, but remember, it was fairly vertical:D
Mel and I then returned to our hostel and changed. Hailed a taxi (buses were scarce to find) and headed to Poring Springs via Renau.
Folks, this was the most fascinating drive of my life! The houses and people we passes were so far off the beaten path and different ot anything I could have ever imaginged. It was amazing.The dogs and chickens on the roads, people sitting around in front of stalls with multi-coloured tarps on top. Random cars abandoned along the roadside with weeds growing up and through the tires. Our driver Peter, was a hoot. He was so proud and would count "One dog, two dog...ooohhh....lookeee, one cock, two hit. Oohhh, one dog, very ugly..." Then he asked if we were Catholic. I said, "No, Protestants". He looked slightly confused. So I simplified and said, "We love Jesus too". Then he got very happy and gave us the best treatment ever. We didn't have bookings in the town of Poring Springs os he drove us to three different hostels at no extra fee and made sure we checked the rooms and helped us barter. Bless him!
We just had dinner and it was delish. I stick to sweet corn soup or sweet and sour chicken. I stray from those occasionally and am always highly disappointed and unable to eat it as the food is really quite spicey here.  On the way back to our hostel we saw the BIGGEST cockroach EVER!! It was a Rhinocerous Cockroach and ugly as sin. Nasty thing. Naturally I stopped to snap a photo. The locals in the store all congregated in the doorway to watch the entertainment before their eyes. The crazy white people taking pictures of bugs. Then shuddering and squeaking everytime it moved. Then running away shrieking when the bug decided it was tired of posing for pics. Glad to be there for them!
I just went to try to take a shower, but alas, the water seems to be shut off. Oh dear. No water for us till morning. So I am going to go to bed early (exhausted after hike and yummy dinner). Till next time. Tomorrow we go in search of the elusive carniverous Rafflesia flower. Wish us luck!


  1. Hey Bec! Pritika from Australia here!

    You seem to be having SO so so much fun and that is great to hear! It is great you are having with fun with fellow like-minded Christians and that the locals have been going out of their way to help you guys have fun! The hospitality and kindness of people... can really make your day :)

    Look forward to reading more of your adventures!

    You're in Malaysia right?


  2. love the description of the drive! glad to hear your seeing some rustic elements of the culture.