Bukit Kiara again

My last post about Bukit Kiara, Bukit Kiara: Not All Is Well, was written end of December and reported that JLN had resumed the fence construction at the eastern border of the proposed Kiara park. It is the yellow line in the TRAKS map below.

Kiara Fence

Now they are constructing the fence at the western side, where the park borders TTDI. Indicated in the map by a light blue line. I went there with my friend Pola Singh to have a look.

Fence under construction

Fence under construction

A small unpaved road, leading to a water tank, separates here the hill from the Taman Tun area, and it is this road where they are constructing the fence. The pylons have been cemented, now the workers are applying the actual fence. Halfway a gate has been planned. Near the water tank, the “prison” fence will connect to an old “friendly” existing fence.

Location of the gate Old fence and new one

What will they do with this old fence? They will have to replace it, IMHO, otherwise the whole idea of making an unclimbable, high-security prison fence around Bukit Kiara becomes meaningless! Where the fence ends at the northwestern corner, it has  to turn 90 degrees (blue dashed line in the TRAKS map) and then go up a very steep slope to connect with the existing northern fence. That will be a very tough job!

On our way back we climbed to the ridge to have a look at another of JLN’s “achievements”, the slope rectification project (see my aforementioned post)

Slope rectification

This was a beautiful tree

When it became clear that the soil removed from the slope, was just dumped at the other side of the road, destroying more trees and one of the TRAKS trails, a public outcry followed, and they stopped. But the damage was already done, as so often happens in Malaysia…:-(  In the beginning they had left one majestic tree standing, but that one now has also been cut down.

Here is a Youtube clip, taken while walking this trail (the 4K trail), until blocked by the JLN-made landslide. Pathetic.

During our hike, I recorded the GPS coordinates and took quite a lot of pictures. It resulted in an EveryTrail report. In the map below you can see our hike, and when you click on it, a slideshow will start.

EveryTrail map

Teoh’s Canyon

My friend Teoh has been talking several times about a beautiful canyon in Negeri Sembilan, where he would like to bring me and my waterfall gang.  A canyon in Malaysia! It was not easy to find a suitable date, that everyone was available, so finally we went only with three people, Teoh Edwin and I.

After breakfast in Batu 9, Cheras, we went on our (long) way to the region of Lata Kijang. This waterfall was almost destroyed by a severe flash flooding in September 2010 and is officially still closed to the public. With a 4WD you can reach the fall, we had to park our sedan at one of the Orang Asli kampungs along the access road and walk from there.

Hot and sunny

It was a few years ago that Teoh had been here, some development had taken place, it took him some time to find the right trail. It was a hot and sunny day, so it was really refreshing when we finally reached the river and could start river trekking!

Start of river trekking

It had not been raining for some time, so the water level was relatively low and the trekking easy. In the beginning the riverbanks were still walkable, but gradually they became steeper

River trekking

It was amazing to see how some of the trees were clinging to the rocks.

Giant tree roots

Tree clinging to the rocks

And then there was the canyon! Quite impressive. This is not a safe place to be when there is a risk of rain!. We noticed debris several meters up in the tree branches

The canyon

The canyon becomes narrower and at the end we saw a small waterfall. Huge tree trunks and branches in (and under) the water.  Here the water became also deeper, we would have to swim to get nearer. It might be interesting to find out if the canyon continued after the fall, but we considered it too risky to go further.

The canyon ends in a fall

Another reason that we did not stay too long, was that not only there were quite a few bees, there were even bee hives up against the rocks. With my bee-sting allergy I did not feel comfortable, so we returned.

Bee hives

Here are a few more pictures. This is the only canyon I know about in Malaysia, a quite interesting experience. Also a bit overwhelming.

So it was also nice to be back again in the green forest, with nice flowers…:-)

Nice flowers

Fresh green plants

On our way back we decided to have a look at the Semeniyeh reservoir, where last year a massive landslide took place. The road is still blocked, they are working on it.

Semeniyeh landslide

Road under construction


Here is a video of the canyon:

Chingay Johor Baru, 2014

I had never heard about the Chingay parade before I recently watched the movie The Journey. In this beautiful movie, the daughter of an old farmer in the Cameron Highlands comes back from England with her boyfriend to get married. Big clash between conservative Frankie and naive, young Benji. Frankie reluctantly agrees to the wedding, but on condition that the wedding invitations will be handed over personally to the wedding guests. This brings them to Johor Baru (JB) where at that time (three weeks after CNY) the Chingay parade is held.

I was fascinated by what I saw, so we decided to go to JB and watch it for ourselves. To break up the long way to JB, we first spent a night in Muar. An interesting town with good food and a lot of beautiful old architecture. I have published a detailed report about this trip on my Adventure Site, so here only one picture of Muar, the iconic Masjid Jamek Sultan Ibrahim, completed in 1930. The British knew how to create spectacular architecture!

Masjid Jamek Sultan Ibrahim

In JB we had booked a room in a hotel along the route followed by the parade. A JB friend of Aric had also provided us with T-shirts we should wear when following the procession. So for the time being a Kwai Loh and a Teochew became Hakka, LOL. A bit of information about Chingay in JB might be useful:

In the Old Temple in JB, five deities reside, belonging to five different Chinese clans/dialects, Hakka, Hainanese, Cantonese, Hokkien and Teochew. During Chingay they are carried through the town, in sedan chairs, carried by devotees belonging to that clan. Here is the Hakka deity

The Hakka deity

During the parade the deities are jostled and tussled often, so they have to be expertly bound to their sedans. Here you see one passing. Of course people are taking pictures, but many, often young people, are also praying. It is not just carnival, but religious as well.

Chingay parades are held in other places as well, for example in Singapore. But the JB one is different and very impressive. After the Five deities have left the “Deities’ Depot in Jalan Ulu Air Molek, their sedans are interspersed with a variety of activities, dragon and lion dancers, stilt walkers, giant puppets, floats. A popular float was this time dedicated to the Journey movie, and main actor Frankie was present.


Here is a collection of pictures, for more pictures, see the report mentioned above. After watching the parade and having our dinner, we went back to our hotel room (on the 15th floor!), where we had a last view of the parade. We will come back next year.

The next day, on our way back home, we visited the Tanjung Piai National Park, the southernmost tip of mainland Asia.

Tanjung Piai N.P.

More pictures and a travelogue here.