Saturday, November 15, 2008

GK 4

My next entry of my Kinabalu climb. It has been more than 8 months, and the story is so the basi. Tapi kengkawan kata, so what? it is yr story...peduli apa? Betul juga....Lagipun, ingat pesanan arwah Mak Yah, "when we do something, do not leave it half way, undone mesti habiskan". So bear with me.....

Our group. I can still smile...amidst feeling excited and nervous

The morning of the climb, Tipohon Gate point.

With all the hustle and bustle and hive of activities....did not lessen my nervousness. it accelerated as we took the van for Timpohon Gate, the starting point. bila van stopped, Francis, our guide kata..."ok, dah sampai." Alamak! dah sampai? cepatnya....jalan le sikit lagi....I'm not ready!!!!! I want to turn back...nak balik!!!!!!! waaaaaa!!!!!!! apa aku buat ni????????? (the voices in my head masa tu....half of me, nak balik...and the other saying "YES!!!! this is it. do or die!!!). my perut, usah citer. Rasa tunggang terbalik, macam nak kuar balik my breakfast. Kecut perut, nervous. Sewel sekejap. Tapi, tak tau macam mana boleh coordinate the brain and the kaki to get my butt off the van and trying to stay as calm as possible. my face was between pucat and excited....again, sewel....

Timpohon Gate - Selamat Mendaki

FH and I bought ourselves a RM3 walking stick. Harry had her own walking stick. Specially flown from KL, diperturunkan from her dear brother yang dah sampai Kinabalu. Francis said that the stick would help us climb as we go along the difficult trail later. sort of putting your weight on the stick. ha? ye ke? beli jangan tak beli....!!!! nampak macam kayu nenek kebayan je. i need that, whatever support i can get, even a nenek kebayan stick. hopefully it will make my life easier for the next few hours. the next grilling and difficult hours climbing the Kinabalu trail.!!!...eee......Yahooooo!!!! (can't decide whether to stay excited or terrified).

It was most memorable, those 1st few steps after the Timpohon Gate as i convince myself, "so...whatever happens up the trail, I must reach the peak of Kinabalu....merangkak pun mesti sampai juga!!!!". with that, langkah pertama, kedua, ketiga and seterusnya.....

There were 10 of us when we started the trail and for the 1st few steps I was the 3rd person and FH was my walking partner. Never far from me (me, sentiasa di belakang) and as usual....we were yakking away... semua tahu dengan bercerita dengan kadar yang banyak dan tanpa henti boleh menjadi a good therapy. I was actually trying to kurangkan my fear (yup, i was nervous) and hopefully by talking could reduce that fear in me. It worked, sebab dok jalan suka hati lenggang mak limah for both of us...and dalam bercakap ala2 marathon tu kena berhati-hati juga biji butirnya. Bukan apa, dalam hutan, atas gunung, jangan cakap suka hati, nanti jumpa benda2 yang we do not want to meet, sebab pesanan penaja Francis dah suruh berhati2 dalam apa juga keadaan.

Posing with my faithful kayu nenek kebayan

After 10 minutes, my group dah berderai...and me, can't cope with their pace. Orang muda semuanya and fitness level yang much better than me. Being the oldest in that group, I have an excuse to keep a slower pace... FH clearly is better than me...lagi banyak dia bercakap, lagi laju dia, well....slower. Nak maintain stamina, takut pancit halfway.

The trail are of rocky paths and steps...lots of it. there are also man made steps...not the concrete steps mind u, batu-batu disusun macam tangga. now i understands why they say that if u can conquer the steps of Batu Caves, u have reached Kinabalu....yeah, right.... Anyway, u have to be very careful when u take those steps. would not want to exert yourself right? There were other climbers as we follow the trail (mestila...) young, old and children of various nationalities. The mat sallehs are so strong and so fit....and im so the jeles. We bumped into a group of veteran climbers. they are so fit. Can put any young climber to shame (including me). One of them gave us a useful tip. Make sure u plan your steps. Don't take big leapy steps, make smaller ones. That will not strain your leg muscles. Ah...yes... that was what we did, FH and I...smaller steps as we take the rocky paths.., smaller steps...

We were informed by other climbers descending the trail, it rained the day before and going up the trail was difficult and slippery. We were lucky coz that was a sunny morning...hmmmm, wonderful.... No wonder it was so foggy and misty all over and yes...cooling too. Imagining myself in a scene of Lord of the Ring. Me, Frodo and FH is Sam..hehehe.

We noticed that pleasanties were exchanged when climbers bumped into other climbers. FH and I were too busy calculating our small steps..but we observed.

Must admit, I was slow. FH can't wait for me any longer as I was dragging and slowing her pace. She left me as we approached the 4th kilometre up the trail. Its ok my friend. I was so far back from my group and amongst the climbers there were no familiar faces. Approaching the 5th kilometre there was Li Li. Yup, she was alone too. But she was too slow, taking too much time snapping photos. I was too tired to even take out the camera from my backpack. it was getting too strenous for me. I think this is the point where i questioned my judgement..."siapa yang bodoh sangat nak put myself into all these trouble and rasa macam nak pitam and feel like giving up?" Yup, ME! I don't give up easily coz if I set my mind on it, I will succeed. But this one....hmmmm I was doubtful. But I surely would not want to be the one for the guide to rescue just because i have given up and not to resume climbing anymore. NO..not me!!!!!

All I wanted to do was just to reach Laban Rata. This is serious...I was so tired even my earlopes were exhausted. No more enjoying nature and the scenery, just one reach the rest house and rest.

After much gruelling hours, i finally reached Laban Rata. I was exausted, hungry and cold....and to add spice to was raining....I dont care about my rain coat in my back pack. What's that? It does not compute. Rain? water only mah...cold freezing water from the sky.....I'm here yes!!!!!! where is my group? Where are they? They have forgotten me? uwwwaaaaa.....!!!!! Hey, there's Li Li. "Aik? bila dia potong aku ni?" I asked. Macam hantu raya la dia ni...sedar-sedar dah depan, I swear that I left her way back.

I called FH. She said our rest house is at Gunting Lagadan and guess what? I need to walk a little further up the trail from Laban Rata. More walking? I can hardly stand!!!! I need to climb more steps and rocky slopes to get to our rest house at Gunting Lagadan. I took another 15 minutes as I crawled those rocks. I finally reached Gunting Lagadan at about 3.30pm to the welcoming applause and cheers from my group members. Yeahhh.....!!! I'm finally here for the 1st half of Gunung Kinabalu. We started the trail at 9am from Timpohan Gate and reached Gunting Lagadan at 3.30pm - 6.5 hours with god knows how many stops and breathers and swearing at myself for doing this....

At the rest house after 6.5 hours, shower and hot holicks....i think i shed 2 kg that day....