Thursday, June 13, 2013

Selangor : Chilling @ Sungai Chiling Fish Sanctuary (Pt.1)

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Selangor : Chilling @ Sungai Chiling Fish Sanctuary : A Bike-Packing Adventure
Kepong Sentral KTM Station to Sungai Chiling Fish Sanctuary : 9th June 2013
Medium Group RideKepong Sentral Station>Komuter Train>Rawang Station>KTM Train>Rasa Station>Kuala Kubu Bharu>Sg Selangor Dam>Sg Chiling Fish Sanctuary and back by bicycle & trains.
Cycling Distance Covered : approx. 48 km.
Time : 6:45 am - 5:30 pm
Time Taken : approx. 10 hrs. 45 mins. (including train rides, stops for breakfast, lunch, photo shoots, swimming at Sg. Chiling, etc.)

Route Recommendations :
1. The Sg Selangor Dam is very picturesque, do stop there.
2. The fishes at the Sungai Chiling Fish Sanctuary are very man-friendly, but do not catch or harm them, preserve nature - or one can be subject to a hefty fine.
3. The up-slope ride up from KKB to the fish sanctuary can be taxing, but it is an enjoyable wind-in-the-face ride, same goes for the cruise down.
4. Stock up with enough water for the climb up from KKB to the fish sanctuary, there is no water to be purchased at the Dam, only carbonated drinks from a vending machine.
5. Do pack the kaya (egg jam) puffs from Teng Wun Bakery in KKB, they have crispy, melt-in-the-mouth crusts.
6. Bring your bike bags along; it could be necessary to bag the bicycles.

This is Part 1 of a 2 part blog, click on following to go to other page :
Chilling @ Sungai Chiling Fish Sanctuary (Pt.2)


PRE-RIDE

Johnny Ng on a XDS FA-16
When Johnny Ng of My Bicycle Shop invited me to his "Foding Bike-Packing" event, I was most excited ...


Siew Yung, Md. Radzi & Tailim on the KTM Commuter Train at Kepong Sentral Station.
 ... it would involve a journey onto trains from Kepong to Rasa ...


... the Sg Selangor Dam looks very scenic ...


... and the destination, Sungai Chilling is naturally enthralling.


Group Photo At Sungai Chiling
And it looks like many others were keen to experience bike-packing as in the end more than thirty turned up for the event.


THE RIDE (Pt.1)

Chilling @ Sungai Chilling Bike Packing Adventure Ride Map (click for Map Link)
For a few of us, the adventure started with a train ride from the Kepong Sentral Station  for some from the Rawang Station and yet for others it will be from Rasa itself.
The above map is only for the cycling part of our journey - starting from Rasa>Kuala Kubu Bharu>Sg Selangor Dam>Sungai Chiling Fish Sancturary, and back.


Kimmiskie at the Kepong Sentral Station
We met at the Kepong Sentral Station at 6:45 am. The train to Rawang will leave at 7:10 am. We will be taking the KTM Komuter to the Rawang Station, then switch to the regular train to the Rasa Station.


The fare for the train ride is RM4-60 one way, and we only needed to get one ticket for the whole journey even though there is a break at the Rawang Station.


Nash came totting his bike, packed into a large bag. He had parked on the other side and had to carry the bike up and down the pedestrian bridge. Reaching us, he was quite breathless.


This made me appreciate my Brompton or other similar bicycles which folds very compactly - like Johnny's XDS FA-16, etc. The Brompton also has roller wheels tor pushing along.


L-R : Johnny, Radzi, Siew Yung, Kim, Suit, Nash, Tailim, Crystal, Patric & me.
7:03 am - Here we are, the ten of us who set off from the Kepong Sentral Station.


..... AND HERE COMES THE TRAIN!


On board the train, we were surprised to see four more co-bikers joining us - Kenny (above in yellow jersey)...


Xinme & Seang Nee (1st & 2nd from left) all with their bikes folded and bagged ...


and Jimmy (seen here with Tailim). They had boarded the same train at an earlier station in Taman Desa.


Over at the Rawang Station, we switched to the normal KTM train and took the opportunity to have a snooze.


Finally we are at Rasa Station. We quickly un-packed our bicycles and unfolded them, eager to get on with the real thing -
RIIIIIIIIDING!


At the station's car-park, more of our friends were waiting for us - Robert, Lea Keng, Kwan, Yong Sin and Chris (Oops! He's not in the picture but his bike is - the folded one on the far right).


John Kang was there with his son and daughter, Natalie. I really admire this friend; he takes great efforts to have his family join him in cycling.


Here we are, getting ready for a group photo in front of the Rasa Station.


Now for the real thing! We started cycling through Rasa town, passing by the make-shift wet market. The locals stared agape on seeing so many cyclist and was even more amazed by the many different bicycles.


Riding out from Rasa, we headed towards Kuala Kubu Bharu (in short KKB).
Hey! Sawal is with us too! That's him on the far right.


Reaching KKB, we had a quick regroup at Jalan Kubu before entering the town proper.


(Photo by Md. Radzi)
It's the Invasion of The Body Snatchers...
Oops! I mean the Invasion of the Cyclists, as over 30 of us rode into Kuala Kubu Bharu town.
We had stopped at that corner pink coffee-shop for breakfast; try as I may I could not find a sign showing the name of the shop - so I will just call it That Pink Corner Coffee Shop.


One thing about cycling, it brings people together even families; we had earlier seen John's - now here is Ah Fatt (of My Bicycle Shop) eating with his wife and three kids. He & his wife, two sons & two daughters had joined us at the outskirts of KKB  which is his hometown.


SC Chin, Seang Nee & Tailim had gone to the local market and packed back some "Siew Yoke" (roast pork) from two different stalls for us. And they were up for grabs, each of us taking a few pieces. Although from different stalls, both were good in their own way.


Upon recommendations from our local biker friends, we popped by Teng Wun Bakery to order some of their delicious kaya (egg jam) puffs for take-away to be collected on our way back (... see Kaya Puffs @ Teng Wun blog). But more on this later.


(Photo By Kwan)
There was some filming of a local drama further up on the street, we took turns posing as actors. Kwan here looked like he's suitable for the role of Cop on Wheels.


Acting time's over!
Time to continue riding, to start the climb up to the Sungai Selangor Dam.


This young boy took on the slopes rather well ...


... unfortunately for Nash, the slopes took a toll on him. Having not cycled for a while, he developed crams and had to take a rest.
Chin up, brother!



The slopes were not easy, going uphill almost continuously for about 13 km. to Sungai Chiling.
John here giving a helping hand to his daughter Natalie while Seang Nee gives them the thumbs up.


The shady road gave way to a steeper and un-shaded one. We were cycling across this viaduct in the bright sunlight, but the cool blowing wind made our ride quite pleasant actually.


11:05 am - A stop for rest and regrouping at the Sg Selangor Dam before we take that left junction ahead to view the dam.


The lake behind the dam is quite picturesque ...


... with shelters for resting or picnics by its sides.


The most fantastic view is this circular water intake; the water rivuleting down its sides looks like mini-breakers accompanied by a smooth whooshing sound.


Most of us had used up our water on the tough climb up, unfortunately at the SPLASH office they do not sell mineral water - there is a machine nearby that vends out soda drinks. For us that will have do make do in lieu of water - I downed two cans of 100Plus, Whew!


12:00 noon - Time to move on, we have another 6 km. of slopes to cycle up.


Passing another viaduct, I admired the turquoise green water of the upper reaches of the dam. It looks so calm & soothing.


 Wong Kt & Missus riding on an old iron arch bridge, we are almost at our destination.


12:25 pm - Hurrah! We are at the Sungai Chiling Fish Sanctuary.
This place is wonderful - so cooling, so green, so pristine that one can naturally bond with... er.... nature here; but then that's a tale for Part 2 (... see Part 2).


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