JUNGLE TREKKING AT FRASER’S HILL
DATE: 14 JANUARY 2017
One popular activity in Fraser’s Hill is to go jungle trekking. There is a total of 7 or 8 jungle tracks in the area. The Pine Tree track is the longest, requiring 7 to 8 hours to complete. The rest are fairly short ones.
We had chosen to do Bishop Trail, and by 10 am we were ready to begin. Near the entrance to the trail was a group of bird watches who had already set up their equipment (tripods & cameras) for the day’s activity.
The track was a bit narrow and damp, but it was an easy one. Rope hand-rails are put up along the slightly challenging stretches. After a few metres, Nik told us he needed to use the men’s room and turned back. The four of us carried on without him.
It was a cloudy morning and the tall trees did not allow much light in. The undergrowth was fairly dense. Hariz spotted leeches and a few minutes later, I discovered one which had bitten through my sock. We could hear the birds loud and clear, but could not point out where they were. Their calls reverberated through the forest like an orchestra. We also spotted a few small birds and some larger ones as we went along. Hazmi found a large centipede with a black body and multi-coloured legs.
Sign posts are posted at appropriate places, so there is no worry about getting lost in the jungle. At our leisurely pace (we want to enjoy nature), we did the 1.5 km trail in one hour. Nik and car were already waiting for us at the other end of the trail.
It was only 11 am, too early to go for lunch. So, we decided to trek another trail, a short one, the Abu Suradi trail near the mosque. Here, the track is broader and not so damp. I spotted a few wild orchid plants on fallen branches, but they were not flowering. Several minutes later we were on the road. The 500-metre trail is too short to get the feel of being with nature.
The five of us trooped down the road and dropped by at Allan’s Water. A group of visitors was feeding the carps and African catfish in the large greenish pond. Paddle boats are also available for hire.
Next door is a plant nursery and vegetable farm. Potted plants, fresh fruits and vegetables are sold here.
The sun was high in the sky and it was getting warm. We walked to the food court to have lunch. The grilled fish looked appetising, but disappointing in flavour.
Nik, Hazmi and Hariz went for another round of golf. Hanif and myself took a rest at the apartment. Later in the afternoon the two of us went for a short drive to check out the Jeriau Waterfall. The boys planned to go for a dip at the waterfall the next morning. The downhill road was winding, going pass a few bungalows. After driving for more than 4 km, we arrived at the waterfall entrance. Above its gate, a large notice printed on red cloth was hanging to greet visitors. The waterfall and jungle tracks are closed from 1 November 2016 until 31 January 2017, this being the rainy season. There goes our plan for tomorrow morning.
Nik had booked the apartment for three nights. Since the waterfall is off limits, there was not much else to do, so we decided to leave on Sunday afternoon. After a late breakfast, we drove around, more or less covering all the roads on Fraser’s Hill. There are many bungalows built in colonial and Tudor styles. Most of them have well-kept gardens. These bungalows are owned by corporates and royal families, and most of them appear to be unoccupied.
Fraser’s Hill is an ideal place if you love nature, fresh air and cool weather. From the corridor of our apartment, we could see the buildings on Genting Highlands, another hill resort about 30 km straight ahead or 82 km by road. Before ascending, however, do check your vehicle’s brakes and make sure the fuel tank has been filled up. There is no gas station on the hill.