Friday, July 22, 2016

Redirecting: Climbing Mount Kinabalu


Mount Kinabalu is not the highest mountain in Southeast Asia, I always imagined it to be. Puncak Jaya, Indonesia topped it by around 700m, and then there’s the matter of prominence, which I don’t quite grasp its concept.

Mount Kinabalu (Mt. KK) is the highest point of Malaysia, and according to Wikipedia, the Malay Archipelago, or Nusantara. It’s the home of a very diversified range of flora and fauna, and despite suffering from its first earthquake in June 2015, it still stands unapologetically proud and high, looking over ranges or hills and mountains, uncountable valleys, and the whole of Kota Kinabalu.

Can’t really pinpoint when I decided to make this trip to KK, but I have (and never had) a single tinge of regret. The climb was difficult, straining, tiring, challenging, but oh it was worth every single drop of sweat and every groan and struggle.

This isn’t a guide, no to-bring-list, no detailed description of what you’ll have to do, no instructions of how to book your tour. This is merely my thoughts being recalled and put into words, and a little of what you might expect, if you’re a girl in her 20’s, fairly fit, and decided to challenge Mt KK with good company.

I swear the mountain looks different at different points of view and different angles, and boy, it is majestic.

We actually opted for a night stay in Kinabalu Pine Resort before the climb, and there’s nothing negative to complain about this place, and it has a spectacular view of Kundasang, so why not. And the entrance to the mountain is inside Kinabalu Heritage Park, which is a 5 minute drive from the resort.

Although pumped with adrenaline already, I slept well that night.

The climb started with a downhill flight of stairs. Which… means more uphill-steps coming up. But honestly, the view and the path changes after every turning, and they’re all so mesmerizing.

As we climbed, the steps eventually became steeper and higher, to the point where every lunge was painful on my thighs. Trees around us became progressively shorter, the leaves pointier, and the air became thinner, as our breathing got louder and faster.

The last 2km, out of 6, were the toughest. Although fueled by our packed lunch, every step felt heavy and draining, and all I wanted was to sit down, with a cup of tea/coffee, and put my legs up, for a long, long time. A comfy chair was all I could dream of at that point.

Continue reading (Incl. Pics) at: Redirecting: Climbing Mount Kinabalu
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