Friday, September 12, 2014

Perak : Parit Buntar Fishing Villages Day 1

You are at - Jotaro's Blog / AhPek Biker / Perak / Parit Buntar 2014 / Day 1     | Go To Day 2 Pt.1 / Day 2 Pt.2 / Day 2 Pt.3 / Day 3 Pt.1 / Day 3 Pt.2
                                    AhPek Biker - Riding Adventures                                      
Perak : Parit Buntar Fishing Villages Day 1
Kuala Lumpur-Parit Buntar : 5th September 2014
Medium Group Train Ride : Kuala Lumpur>Parit Buntar
Distance: Train ride (not tracked as this is just a train ride)
Time : 10:00 pm - 4:30 am
Time Taken : 4-1/2 hrs.

Route Recommendations :
1. Purchase your tickets early. KTM open their booking for purchase of tickets one month prior to the date AND time of travel.
2. For night trains, it is advisable to book sleeping berths so as to get a comfortable sleep and be fresh to cycle. Book berths early too as they are snapped up within two days.
3. On-line booking can be done through KTM's Intranet, you need to register as a member to use it.
4. The train is air-conditioned and gets cold, do bring warm clothings to cover up.
5. Food is served on board the train's dining coach, but there are nothing much to shout about. It will be better to bring along packed food of your choice.
6. Travelling with our foldies on trains is part of the cycling adventure, I encourage you to try it as it opens up another avenue to further the cycling experience.

This blog comes in a few parts. This Day 1 blog is on our journey from Kuala Lumpur to Parit Buntar. To see other parts:


PRELUDE
KT has organized a ride that will take a route through fishing villages in Perak, starting from Parit Buntar. Many of us were keen to join in, to see those villages with their colourful sceneries of boats, rivers and padi fields. What attracted me also is that it will be a multi-mode adventure that will include train rides, boat rides and a bus ride too; and all this with our bikes tagging along. We will be taking a train from Kuala Lumpur to Parit Buntar to kick off the ride. Somewhere in between we will be onto boats from Kuala Gula to Kuala Sangga to Kuala Sepetang, where we will stay a night. A chartered bus will take us from Taiping to Ipoh from there we will take a train back to Kuala Lumpur. Wow!... this will be interesting and educational.
Eventhough this ride will cover only three days; there were 19 of us, a fairly large group, so it was no easy task to be the organizer. Train tickets had to be purchased, boats and a bus had to be chartered; and accommodations at Kuala Sepetang had to be booked. On top of that, foodie places and interesting places to visit will have to be researched (Yes, we did visit more than just seeing the fishing villages). I must take my hat off to KT for planning and orchestrating this ride well, there were only a couple of minor glitches. KT blogs to see his blogs at The Great Outdoors.


When I turned up, my cycling buddies were surprised to see me just with by bike and a small Brompton Mini O bag. Hey! Are you sure you have packed enough?
Well, I have travelled on overnight trips with just this small bag, it's small but can pack a fair bit (... see blog on Mini O - Packing Light & Tight). 


THE TRAIN RIDE
9:00 pm - One by one from our homes we came down and met at the KFC outlet at KL Sentral. We ordered and chit-chat, eager to start our trip.


Although the train we are taking, the Senandung Langkawi, departs only at 10:00pm; we had gathered earlier so as to ensure that all our bikes are properly folded and bagged.


The train tickets were also distributed. The fare was RM32-00 for the ride up to Parit Buntar, we will be sitting in a Superior Class Coach, superior meaning better seats.


We were joined by Sebestian Engel, a German cyclist who had cycled from Germany through Europe, Asia and had arrived in Malaysia a few days earlier. He was being hosted by Siew Yung through the Warm Showers on-line cycle touring and hosting site.
To follow Sebastian's cycling adventures, see his blogs at http://www.sebastian-engel.eu/.


The train arrived and we were cheerful to be on board. It has been a long time since I took one of these trains, and how things have changed. The coaches are now clean & air-conditioned; and the seats were comfortable and reclining too.


It was a good thing that KT had booked the front row seats as in front of those there were ample space to put our bicycles. Just imagine, we had to find space to put our nineteen bicycles - somehow we managed to squeeze them in without having to obstruct the aisle too much.


A couple of friends did not turn up and their seats came to be of good use for putting our bikes - note, to do this please ensure that your bike is fully bagged and does not dirty the seat in any way.


Comfortably settled in, we were soon entertained by the friendly banter of our two Malaccan friends; their wittiness was almost like one of those Nyonya bangsawan performance.


I had brought some dim sum aboard to eat when suddenly a smelt the good aroma of fried chicken; some of our friends had brought take-away KFC chicken to eat.
Dang! Now, why didn't I think of that?


As I would be writing a blog on travelling on these trains with our foldies, I went to the sleeping berth coach to see how they are and also to chat with a few buddies who were there.
These berths looked cozy and my friends were in for a comfortable night's sleep. Now why didn't I think of this also?


A few hours later, some of us who were still hungry went to the Dining Coach to fill up our tummies - those dim sum were definitely not enough. For more see the blog on travelling with foldies on Malaysian Regular Intercity Trains.


Back at our coach, the rest were already comfortable sleeping, laid back on the reclining seats. The air-conditioned coach does get cold and it is best to cover up to keep warm. Also, the lights are not turned off, so we covered our eyes too.
We joined our friends and took a snooze.


4:25 am - The train arrived a bit early, and we quickly disembarked with our folded bicycles and carried them across a pedestrian bridge (the lift was out of service) to the exit point of the station.


At the exit point, we quickly unbagged and unfolded our bikes.
Our ride was scheduled to kick-off at 7:30 am.
Heck! We are just to eager to stretch our legs and start -
LET'S JUST RIDE ON!



This blog comes in a few parts. This Day 1 blog is on our journey from Kuala Lumpur to Parit Buntar. To see other parts:
click here for Day 3 Pt.1: Kuala Sepetang to Taiping.
click here for Day 3 Pt.2: Taiping to Ipoh to KL.


Related Blogs:



Brompton Accessories #14 : Mini-O Bag Packing Light & Tight

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You are at - Jotaro's Blog / AhPek Biker / Perak / Parit Buntar 2014 / Day 1     | Go To Day 2 Pt.1 / Day 2 Pt.2 / Day 2 Pt.3 / Day 3 Pt.1 / Day 3 Pt.2
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