Tuesday, April 23, 2013

KL/Selangor : Songkran Double Loop Trail - Loop 2

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KL/Selangor : Songkran Double Loop Trail - Loop 2
The Pink Lady on Her Hot Pink Brompton.
Kuala Lumpur to Petaling Jaya to Ulu Ampang : 14th April 2013
Medium Group Ride - 
Loop 2 : Dataran Merdeka>Sri Ganesar Temple>Ampang Yong Tau Foo>Nine Emperor Gods Temple>Ulu Langat Road>Pudu>Dataran Merdeka
Distance covered : approx. 75.00 km.
Time : 7:40 am - 4:35 pm
Time Taken : approx. 8 hrs. (including stops for breakfast, lunch, photo shoots, Thai water wars, etc.)
Loop 1 Route Recommendations :
1.It will be hard to remember the route we took in the Ampang hinterland, do use the map provided as a guide.
2. Try to plan for more time at the Nine Emperor Gods Temple, there is much more to see.
3. If time permits, continue up Jalan Ulu Langat. It is a good slope to ride.
4. Don't miss the Ampang Yong Tau Foo at Restaurant Foong Foong.


PRE-RIDE

In Loop 1, we had conquered Gasing Hill and...


... had also enjoyed a wild and wet time at the Thai Chetawan Temple.


During the rest period between the two loops; we took turns to have our photo taken with our two foreign friends.
First one group wearing the Malaysian Foldies T-shirt, then the girls, etc. I hope this photo session did not make our guests feel like blushing brides.


THE RIDE - LOOP 2

Loop 2 Ride Route Map : Dataran Merdeka>Sri Ganesar Temple>Ampang Yong Tau Foo>Nine Emperor Gods Temple>Ulu Langat Road>Pudu>Dataran Merdeka (click for Map Link)
This secondt loop will take us from the Royal Selangor Club to see a nice Indian temple and then lunch at the famous Ampang Yong Tau Foo. After that we will visit the beautiful Nine Emperor Gods Temple and then head into the Ampang hinterland.


Seang Nee was unfazed by the earlier Loop 1 ride, and is all raring to go!


And we are off again! This time instead of heading towards Brickfields via the storm drains, we set off for Jalan Tun Perak.


From there we made a left turn up to Bukit Nenas.


Passing by St. John's Institution.
Fenn's bicycle developed some technical problems and she could not ride fast. I asked Siew Keong the sweeper to proceed ahead, and I will take care of Fenn.
Soon the rest of the gang were out of sight, and we were not sure which route they will be using. Luckily, there was mention of a regroup point at the Ampang Park LRT Station.
So I led Fenn through the shortest, safe route there, via Jalan P Ramlee, the KLCC, and then riding along the walkways of Jalan Ampang.


At KLCC  Fenn's bike had some problems with the rear derailer, I managed to temporarily repair it and we rode on.
We rode pass this Chinese Temple at Jalan Ampang - No, this is not the Nine Emperor Gods Temple, that one will be up at the other end of Jalan Ampang.


At the Ampang Park LRT Station regrouping point, the rest of the gang were impatiently waiting for us, wondering what had happened to us (my phone also developed some technical problems and they could not get in touch with us).
Fortunately, Jimmy Chow was riding with us. With his expert knowledge, he repaired Fenn's bike, doing a much better job than me.


With the repair resolved, we headed off again, crossing Jalan Tun Abdul Razak.
Yes, as Jerping promised, we will be avoiding cycling on busy Jalan Ampang  Instead we rode a short distance along Jalan Tun Abdul Razak before turning left into Jalan U Thant.


Cycling along the Jalan U Thant area is comfortable, traffic is light at the residential roads. Even on the wider roads it's medium and manageable.


Weaving through the roads of effluent residential area, and with a turn here and there, we found ourselves at the Pandan area - a markedly Plebian area.
We rode pass the reknown Kampung Pandan Fish Head Curry shop. Wow! they have really expanded, they used to occupy lean-to sheds.


We are now riding into the even narrower streets of the inner Kampong Pandan area.


A couple of streets away, we reached our first destination for the Second Loop - the Sri Ganesar Indian Temple.


As in many Indian temples, the spire is well adorned with statues of Indian Gods.


Leaving the temple, a small group of us got separated from the rest and did not know which direction they were heading. Here we are, with Tailim calling up Jerping to get directions.


Jerping came to our rescue and led us on, onwards to our lunch destination.
Most of us were familiar with the route of Loop 1, but many have not rode here in the area of route 2. It was an introduction by Jerping to his biking territory, and on how to get to the hinterland of Ampang without using the main roads.


Lunch was at tofu at the renown Foong Foong Ampang Yong Tau Foo. Some of us had rode here before (see Ampang Yong Tau Foo Ride 2012).


Yong Tau Foo is a hot-spotch of vegetables, bean curds, tofu, etc. filled with fish paste.


We also had Sweo Kau, deep fried dumplings filled with a mixture of fish paste and pork (... see more).


While the others were waiting for their tofu orders to come, Dhruv and I went walking around, looking for a vegetarian restuarant - Dhruv being a vegetarian and the tofu meal with fish and meat paste was not suitable for him. Fortunately, less than five minutes walk away is the Lian Chi Vegetarian Restaurant.


The food here was buffet style with a spread of about twenty dishes.
Seeing that Dhruv was comfortable and that the food was agreeable for him, I went back to rejoin the others - see, I am not much of a Vegan.


After lunch, we rode over to the nearby Nine Emperor Gods Chinese Temple in Ampang.
From outside, it did not seem impressive with uncolored wall panel murals.


The beauty of the place can only be seen when one enters within its compound, to one side is a grand arch with dragons and phoenixes roof embellishments.


The main temple building had two twin pagodas framing it.


Each pagoda has a simple beauty about it - not too elaborate but with a play on colors to amplify a spartan beauty.


On closer inspection, the uncolored wall mural panel carvings are not so plain after all. The carvings are quite detailed, the only thing is that they are not painted - is this the latest style for temples?


The ceiling of the porch roof, very red with detailed ornamental carvings.
We did not have the time to visit the interior of the temple, so only some quick shots here.


A majestic looking panel with golden dragons on a bright red background.


Food and temple tour over, it's time to begin serious cycling again.
Fenn is in a cheerful mood now, as her bike is much better after the repairs.


Our ride is slowly going uphill, the climb getting steeper. We are heading for the hills ahead.


Ok.... cannot cycle up slope, we push.


and... if cannot push; then stop and rest.


But no worries!
At the top of the hill, the Calvary *bugle blowing* came (in the form of Shirny) with cans of ice-cold lemon tea.


Jason had pre-arranged with his wife to send the drinks over. What a pleasant surprise and what a life saver!
Many thanks to Jason & Shirny.


In the meantime, the ride leaders were in serious discussion; should we continue to ride further uphill on steeper slopes of Jalan Ulu Langat.
Decision was - No. It was getting late and some of the newbie riders were getting exhausted. There were many sighs of relief.


Instead, we coasted down slope along Jalan Ulu Langat and was back to the residential areas in a jiffy.


... and into the Shamelin Pekasa area.
Hey! We are back into Kuala Lumpur already.


At Jalan Cochrane, Jerping giving "Thumbs up" for a successful ride.


Seangnee giving a warning!
"Oi! No photos of me!"


At the Kampong Pandan- Sprint Link, heading into the Central Business District Area of Bukit Bintang. The KL Tower and Petronas Twin Towers can both be seen.


Turning left into Jalan Raja Chulan from Jalan Sultan Ismail. An interesting 3-D signage promoting Limkokwing University can be seen there.


Along Jalan Raja Chulan, some colonial houses can be seen on the left. I do hope these will be conserved.


Into busy Jalan Tun Perak again.


AND we are back at the Royal Selangor Club.
It has been a great ride - two loops of a contrasting nature, both interesting in their own ways.
Many thanks to Tailim & Jerping.

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