Posted: 16 Jan 2013 09:35 PM PST
The idea of attempting hills of Bukit Tinggi came last year when Azmi a.k.a. Globe Rider started sowing the seeds of mountain love into my mind. It was then when Rozaimi wanted to train his mountain legs, I rolled out the proposal. In fact it was good for everyone who plans to start the new season with some strength trainings.
The words started spreading. Suddenly TOK came back alive with a few ideas and nonsense thrown in but the Colmar idea was pretty much doable. I notified Azmi asking for route direction but we get back more instead, he willingly wanted to lead the ride. Magnificento!
The words of mouth were so strong that we easily gathered about 21 buddies at Sup Awe that morning. With a few more groups with their own ride, the place can easily be mistaken for an event. Though, the rain clouds kicked in some wariness among us, a plan is still a plan that requires pursuances.
Three quarter way up Genting Sempah, we had a puncture. Slight drizzle and thick fog adds up to the drama. Fog was so thick, visibility was merely meters away. The feeling of Alps climbing fantasized in each of us.
Riding down from Genting Sempah towards Janda Baik intersection was wet, cold & numb. We shivered on our bikes while slowly grasping the brakes ready for any unwanted mishaps. With the weather looked unpromisingly good for the rest of the ride, 6 buddies bailed out & decided to detour to Janda Baik instead, leaving out the remaining 15 for the Colmar attempt. Beyond this juncture, it was a new riding route my most of us.
We rolled down the steep and winding road through Bukit Tinggi narrow street, busy with the Sunday morning hawkers and wet market. The only way into Colmar Tropicale was from the Karak Highway. Hence, we had to cycle on the highway for about 3km. The idea of cycling on Karak Highway was beyond my thoughts. Which means, we had to climb back up on Karak Highway to Genting Sempah…?
The real ordeal was the sight of the majestic climb right after we entered the Berjaya Hills entrance road. Similar to Fraser Hills, it has 2 optional routes navigating to the same point, which is the ultimate Colmar Tropicale peak.
Azmi suggested the left option which is pretty much longer but less nasty circumnavigating in a clockwise direction. Through to be told, we don't have the slightest idea of how steep was the climb until Azmi shouted out the gradient reading from his tweeting Garmin. Damn! The variation threw in 9-10% average and it was kind of demotivating as well. We had the pleasure of beautiful overcast sky and cool breeze with a few recovery stretches along the climb. It can be tormenting should the sky open up since the climb was exposed without canopies.
The 14km long climb started playing yo-yo down to our quads and gluteus. Every stroke of the crank arm getting heavier each time we met with a new climb. Climb after climb, we started seeing resort buildings and that was a good sign for remedy.
The only thing that was a bit frustrating about this route is that we had to pay to enter Colmar Tropicale and food ain't cheap either. Despite our engine-less vehicle, we were still charged without mercy of RM12. Trust me; next attempt will be until the ticket collection booth. I'm not paying again.
The most brutal climb is beyond that ticket counter, a 16% gradient for 100m, and we actually paid purposely for that. Call it stupidity. Almost similar to the one in Bukit Merah Resort climb.
It felt so steep, really. I can feel the steepness. The thighs were struggling to push the pedals for forward/upward motion. The hands were gripping the hoods for control and the core was burning trying to keep balance in place. Straight up was almost impossible; hence we were advised to zig-zag instead. I was lucky it was only 100 meters; else walk-the-bike approach should've been more logical.
We rolled in towards the entrance of the Colmar Street and rest our bike & butts at the bench that was put in a strategic pattern for photo shoots. Cold, wet & hungry, we had loads of photos taken to make every penny worth spent.
Starvation pulled us out early from the town. The idea of walking on the cobble stone was hindered by the security. They wanted us to park our bikes elsewhere instead. Now who's gonna watch over those RM15k bike? Bad idea.
Now it was playing chase going back down the other way. Turn after turn with small turning radius at times. Loosing concentration may lead to crash or overshooting the safety guardrails. Balance and tossing around with the centre of gravity was skills! The scene from Chasing Legends when the pros went down mountain path with tires screeching and brakes whining suddenly caught my day dreaming from the cold mountain air. The recap of Jens Voight crashed at high speed descending was heart stopping.
Slowly reducing my speed and secured my approach at every corner avoiding any unwanted stunts. Completing the descent was also tiring. We regrouped before entering Karak Highway again and started to string ourselves out like a bee line along the highway pacing our own selves in accordance to our empty fuel tank.
Finally lunch break came when we stopped at the Bukit Tinggi town. The town always reminded me of Cameron Highland's Farmville, small and busy to itself. A Malay restaurant serves the best lunch for the day with a cup of hot Nescafe 'O'. Sumptuous.
We had a short discussion for alternatives way back up to Genting Sempah intertwined with laughter from the day's feat. Jokes started flying around the lunch table, but we yet to see the final of it.
It was either via Jalan Gombak lama with 2km steep incline plus 3km granny or the 3km continuous 10% Karak Highway. We chose the latter for a shorter torment & time. The climbing speed was almost similar to the YTL cement carrying tanker. It was totally solitude as one stayed to our own selves despite the revving engines from the highway. It seemed endless but still the final push from Genting Sempah R&R will be the ultimate challenge.
We took a breather at the R&R while regrouping before the last climb. The last climb almost had most of us. With tiring legs, we cursed our selves left and right. This climb is always being remembered as the painful one, almost for every cyclist.
The rolling down Genting Sempah to Sup Awe was mixed with boredom and smile. We checked-in at 2:30 p.m. and that provide enough time for a quick cleanup and ABC.
With a few more ride plans down the line, more posts will be inevitable. Looks like the legs are twitching for more & looks like running will be at bay for a while.
Lets get crazy...
Posted: 23 Nov 2012 01:38 AM PST
Sekarang di kenali sebagai Bukit Berjaya tetapi orang ramai lebih suka nama Bukit Tinggi .Letaknya kira-kira 60 minit jika anda bertolak dari KUala Lumpur dengan keluasan 16,000 ekar yang terlatak dalam kawasan Hujan Tropika. Ketinggiannya antara 800 m hingga 1000 m dari paras laut . Kedudukan di kawan tanah tinggi dengan hutan hujan tropika amat sesuai jika bersama kelaurga kerana di sini dilengkapkan segala kemudahan seperti penginapan,restoren,kedai cenderamata,kawasan tarikan Taman Bunga,Taman Haiwan,Padang Golf dan juga aktivit2 lasak dalam hutan.
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