Tuesday, October 30, 2012

Cameron Highlands-Gunung Irau

I was supposed to visit Singapore during this Raya Haji holiday. But a last minute cancellation by one of the guys ruined the plan. So I was left with only a few days to come up with a surrogate plan
Gunung Irau is the ninth tallest mountain in Malaysia, only 80 meters lower than the tallest peak in peninsular Malaysia, Gunung Tahan.
I read on the internet that a permit, a mountain guide and a police report are required for anyone who wishes to scale the mountain. I had in fact acquired none of those--no permit, no guide, no police report. In fact there was a hiker who got lost last year, so I thought the police might not let me hike the mountain if I told them I had no guide with me. I eventually ditched the idea of lodging a police report.
The journey to Cameron was really challenging. The uphill ride was full of sharp turns. And I saw a group of middle-easterns in a Naza, probably a rented car, going dangerously up the hill. They're always so childish aren't they? You could always see them in KL on weekend, riding in luxurious cars and getting drunk. They're old but very often their behavior doesn't exactly reflect what's expected of people their age.

I stayed at a backpackers' lodge and visited the nearby tea farm. There, I saw a mongoose running across the road! It was probably moving from one side of the farm to another side and wow, it was thrilling to see the legendary snake buster live. I have never seen a live, wild mongoose before so please bear with my excitement.
The next morning I rode to Gunung Brinchang, the starting point towards Gunung Irau. The forest there is called the mossy forest because they're so covered by moss, Lord of the Rings style.

Okay now, anyone who wishes to scale Mount Irau please take note: the ground is constantly swampy and muddy so please don't go with your conventional hiking shoes. Be ready to discard your socks at all time. Bring a pair of gloves because you may need to use all four limbs on many occasions. The trail is narrow, at some point very steep, 99.99% muddy, and quiet. The one thing I noticed there was the silence of the forest. It's so eerily silent you could literally hear your own heart beating. On my way up I met several groups of hikers coming down from the peak, and they were shocked to know I was alone. Seriously pal, going solo is not recommended (now that I've got lost in there) because you could really lost your way in there. On my way down I met a group of hikers going up, and several moments later I saw them again, this time I was approaching from their back. So I was literally walking in a circle in the forest.

I visited the strawberry farm and the bee farm the next morning. At the bee farm I met another group of middle-easterns. This time, an idiot in the group smashed a bee dead for no apparent reason. When a bee dies it releases a pheromone which alerts the entire colony. So when I approached next to snap a picture in my striking, orange jacket, one of the bees came and stung me just above my lips. The sudden stab almost inspired an outburst of some amazing quotes on human genitalia. Luckily the lady boss was nice enough to apologize and offer me some cream to be applied on the wound. Again, retarded middle-eastern, jus like those living in my apartment:- screaming loudly at night in the table tennis room with utter disregard for other people, and leaving the light in the recreation room on after use.
The fella that smashed a bee dead--that's the dude in the black shirt. Son of a bitch indeed.

Anyway, it was still a memorable backpacking trip. But if any of you wants to scale Mount Irau, get a guide. Or you can go with me ;)
Ordered too much food the first night. But managed to gulp 'em down.



  1. lovely pictures,nice views,good info..planning to go to Irau next month..

  2. Can you give me contact no for guide..tq

  3. May I also ask for the contact no of your guide. Thanks



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