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Saturday, October 13, 2007

Kluang, Gunung Belumut

Dotted lines are where I had trod


By now, east and west of JB, I had quite explored it rather thoroughly. But the areas middle of lower Malaysia, was still largely quite unknown to me. Today, being Hari Raya, we went in JB without much plans, moreso to escape the invites of friends to their Hari Raya party.

Crossing the causeway, I headed to the Mac at Permas Jaya for a change. The last time there, Mac only opens after 8am. To our good fortune, we discovered that the operation hours had changed, and now it is a 24 hr joint.

While having our happy meals and big breakfast, I decided to target the areas to the left of Kota Tinggi town, just to see what's on the other side. Coming out of Permas and joining Pasir Gudang, I routed by Jusco Terbrau City, and up to Ulu Tiram. From my GPS, I noted that I could make a left towards a long road up to Kulai. I did a why not, and was soon merrily on the way to Kulai town.

Hilly road




The road beyond that stretch wasn't quite busy, but the road was a long and winding hilly drive. And rather steep too. In some ways, quite fun, not unlike a rollar coaster ride.

After an hour into the drive, I noted on my map a large expense of water, called linggui reservoir. With the blue at that size on my GPS, it should be an interesting visit. But the road signs ended abruptly and I couldn't find a proper road in. I was to check my GPS later and found that the road in was a dirt track, probably requiring a 4WD. No wonder I found myself cut off from the normal road. There was this intersection with a gantry with a dirt track in. Too bad, I had to give it a miss. I tried so hard to find an alternate route but ended up in a Malay Kumpong and found myself at a sloppy deadend blocked by motorbikes. The villagers had to come out to guide me out of the awkward spot to make a U-turn. :P

Driving upwards, I ended up in Kluang instead. Midway, I decided that Kluang was a more interesting town, and changed my target to Kluang. I was later to pass by Kulai, stopping at one of its mall, Giant itself. Reaching Kluang, I didn't know what to head for, but noted that there was a Gunung just around the corner, Gunung Belumut. I searched on my GPS and found a mall called BCB. Well, for the lack of a better choice, I headed straight for it.

BCB (not sure what it stood for)


Carpark looked safe


View of Kluang from the Carpark. This 4th story building about the highest here


View of Gunung Belumut from here


Traffic was clear


Going up the carpark, the first time to greet me was a very steep and long ramp up to the upper deck. No wonder Malaysian drivers all very skilful. Parking my car at a brightly lit place, we took the lift down, and entered the mall via "the store" entrance. "The Store" was an anchor tenant here, and it had 4 stories of shopping space here. But overall, the mall itself wasn't too big, but there were quite good choices for shoes and clothings.

D in front of the "the store"


Inside the smallish mall


Lunch time!


Hey, the chicken very small


Hari Raya Deco


I shopped for some D's clothes, and thereafter, we had lunch at the Merry Brown, MY own version of KFC. Lunch wasn't too bad, and was decorated for Hari Raya.

There was a village near the mountain


After lunch, I decided to check out the Gunung Belumut, and followed the directions there. GPS wasn't too helpful as there wasn't any routable road to the place. But fortunately, the road signs this time was quite useful, and I managed to find the place, although it turned out to be rather far from Kluang itself. I would estimate a distance of 60km to reach the foot.

Alien landscape


View from the hilltop




Interesting road to base of Gunung Belumut


I thot I was lost until I spotted this


Arriving at the gate


Tourist centre


Map of the recreational attaction


Armed with Umbrellas, weather didn't look good


We were here!


Must be a water fall somewhere


Dense forest


Raining..


Arriving at Belumut, the weather turned bad, and it started to rain. With our umbrellas, we walked into the park a little, but the water came pouring down, and I decided to cut short the visit and got everyone back to the car. Belumut itself was much like Ledang, with a stream, and places for people to camp and have fun hiking.

Giant here at a Mall called Green Point


Car Park was quite full


Busy hub


Green Point


Driving out, I tried another route back, and turned out that I was heading for Skudai, via Kulai. After a long drive, we reached Kulai, and drove passed a Giant. I was thinking it might be a good idea to have dinner there. But walking around the mall, there wasn't much food to eat (except for another merry brown), and I wasn't too pleased with the fact that the locals smoked freely in the air conditioned mall. I decided then to head for dinner at our usual Jusco Terbrau City, for a more civilised environment.

Tackle shop at Ulu Tiram


At the Kulai junction to Skudai or Kota Tinggi/Ulu Tiram, I took the Tiram route instead. Skudai at this time should be rather squeezy. A spotted a Tackle shop at Tiram, and knowing me, I had to stop to look around. It wasn't too bad, well stocked, but more oldish stuff.

Reaching Jusco, it was just in time for dinner at Six. We did our usual sushi, white kopi town, and caught the show "the magic gourd". D enjoyed it very much, although the story line was quite iffy to me.

After the show, headed back home around 11.15pm. Checkpoint was smooth and there wasn't much traffic, very much to my surprise.

7 comments:

ami said...

Hi... I think you missed out the Water Fall. There is Water Fall close to the Recreation place.

http://www.waterfallsofmalaysia.com//100yong.php

Mie said...

I like your style... Touch & go... I like to do that when I have x-tra money and time.

Las montaƱas said...

Gunung Belumut is still relatively untouched. Heard that there were tigers sighted some years back.

Anonymous said...

I used to work on the construction of Linggui Reservoir in the early 90's. Had the desire to climb up Gunong Belimut, but it never did happen.....I think the locals refer it to Guning Harimau.....not far from this area (Ulu Sedili forest)was where some years ago, the so-called sighting of bigfoot was reported in the media....

During the jungle clearance for the reservoir, I had come across, heards of elephants, seen a sun bear, and there were reports of a a black panther......seen tiger tracks........to visit the reservoir (which belongs to Singapore) you have to head to Bandar Tenggara.


stephenjoseph@yahoo.com

nafishnafish said...

Dear Joseph,
Thank you for your sharing about your involvement with Gunung Belumut. It was interesting and insightful and I probably had not appreciated enough of the mountain history and background. Thanks for the enlightment. :)

johnnie lim said...

hi
are you going there again? do you need to apply for permit? if so how to go about it?(how many days in advance?)I wanted to go but dont have any one to lead.
thanks.

Richard Yeoh said...

You need to apply for a forestry permit & submit a namelist to the Kg Gajah police station.
We are a group of casual trekkers who hikes every 2 weeks. Do get us at Facebook 'Freewill Hikers Club'. You can join us if the time fits. Do also go through the pictorial narration of the mountains we conquered.