Sunday, May 10, 2015

Negeri Sembilan : Titi - "Got Hills Meh?"

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Negeri Sembilan : Titi - "Got Hills Meh?"
Titi - Double Loop, Negeri Sembilan : 26th April 2015
Medium-sized Group Event -
Cycling Distance Covered: Loop 1- 29.20km.     |     Loop 2- 27.44km.
Time: Loop 1- 8:40am - 11:45am
Time Taken: Loop 1- approx. 3hrs. 5mins. (including stops for rest, drinks & regrouping, photography, etc.)


Route Recommendations :
1. The route is rather full of slopes, some are steep but most are manageable. Just pace yourselves.
2. Traffic is light out of the towns where the roads pass through secondary jungle, but still do listen out for other traffic.
3. Most of the route is not shaded, so do cover up and bring more water to rehydrateIn Titi town, one can find good fruits, especially their renown pineapple. There are also Nyonya Kueh which can be bought from a few road-side stalls.
4. Titi is also renown for it's Hakka food, a good place to try this is at the Sin Wong Kok Restaurant.


PRELUDE
Our group photo at Broga.
I had seldom cycled in Negeri Sembilan. On a bike-packing trip from Sugai Gadut to Malacca in 2012, we did ride through some towns there but did not had the chance to explore the place more thoroughly (... see Peranakan Bike Packers blog). Then just about a couple of months back we cylced in Broga, it was a relatively  interesting route, quite flat that at on stage weaved us in and out into neighbouring Selangor. That route also took us through plantations which with their brown leaves looked like an autumn scenery but in the tropics. The ride started and ended at the Broga Temple which some of us took the opportunity to visit after the ride (... see Broga Loop blog).
This time round we are heading for Titi, a small, non-descript town; one that is a favourite among cyclists as it is at the hills at the edge of Malaysia's Main Range. It will be a tough route with steep climbs, so how did that catch-phrase in Malaysian Manglish "Got hills meh?" come in. Let's see then.



THE RIDE

Ride Route-
 Loop 1  : Titi>Kampung Kongkol>Kampung Chennah>Titi
Loop 2 : Titi>Kuala Klawang>Titi
This ride actually consist of two loops both starting near Titi and both going through hilly areas. One can either do one loop, or if physically up to it do both. The first loop is about 35km. while the second one is about 27km. giving a total of 62km. I only did the first loop and left it to the stronger ones to cycle the second.


We met up at 8:00pm, later than our usual cycling start time as Titii is a bit of a distance away, about two hours drive from Kuala Lumpur and Petaling JayaThe place is a small town, with the town's population mainly being Hakka Chinese. Small it is but it has some good food and we had one of the coffee-shops that served noodles with Yong Tau Foo. The tofu at this town should not be missed, with a good musky aroma and a tinge of bitterness it is one of the better ones that I have tried.


A cursory group photo at the Titi police station before kicking off. This is not all of us, a few other were still enjoying their good breakfast at the coffee-shops.


Heading out of the town we were soon onto the rural roads. Eventhough Titi is quite a distance away from the major towns, I can see why many like to ride here; at most stretches the traffic is light, the road slopes but not were not to steep and around us were mainly secondary jungle. It's a nice quite place to cycle, with the continuous slopes giving a good challenge.
Unlike the dragon-backs at Taman Negara, the slopes are hard but not unreasonably tough (except for on last stretch towards the end of the first loop); even a couple of our friends' young boys joined us and they took it on well.


Like any cycling at the hills, there is always the reward of whoohsing down the slope, here it's made more interesting by the many bends where we could glide down well without having to worry too much about other traffic.


Although most of the route is through secondary jungle areas, the roads are mostly unshaded. Probably up here the jungle is not so dense and at the later part of the morning it does get somewhat hot, so do cover up or apply sunblock lotion.


AND bring lots of water to re-hydrate!


No Pain No Gain!
So the rewards of the hard cycling are here; blue skies with green hills...


... and rural life here, like this rattan farm. The rattan are collected from the nearby jungle and are left here to dry out and season before being made into furniture.


Passing by rustic pastoral fields for where cows grazed and like the above farm huts for goats. I like that cute white goat, it was curious of me waiting for an opportune moment to snap their photos.


... and every once in a while, that odd Tapir Crossing road sign. No, we were not lucky enough to spot any of these tapirs.


The boys took the slopes in stride and seem to enjoy the change of rustic scenery to the normal urban life. Oops.... mum is having some fun too, photo-bombing here.


A couple of punctures along the way. The bike taking a rest while friends attend to repairing the puncture.


Kim expertly listening to locate a puncture position. When asked what the tube said; she replied "Wheeeee!".


Titi 55km. away?
No, I think this sprayed sign sprayed onto the road is wrong, it's more like 5.5km. away.
Got me worried for a while there though!


The girls were happy that they accomplished it...


... and so was I!
The last climb was the hardest, most of us managed to climb it on our bikes.
While waiting at the intersection, John came riding, just after completing that climb and shouted:
"Got hills meh?"
Hah! We took on those slopes and even after the toughest ones we can still joke about it:
"Got hills meh?"



While the stronger cyclists continued on to the second loop, most of us rode back to Titi to see what the town has to offer. There are many stalls selling fruits here, especially pineapple, Titi is renown for it's sweet pineaples. Other stalls sold Nyonya kuehs, the above is a colourful Kueh Lapis but additional strips of green layers. Perhaps they are different from the norm as they are the Hakka version.


Around the town, there are some colourful wall murals to be seen.
The above  of a fiery dragon can be seen at the Kwong Fook Kong Temple.


A few of the murals show the renown Titi pineapple.






Titi is also renown for it's Hakka food; we ate at Restoran Sin Wong Kok; needless to say we enjoyed the food very much.


Not to be missed are their tofu...


... and Yee Tau Tong (Fish Head Soup) made from very fresh Haruan fish (Snakehead Murrel).
(..... Read more about these Hakka Food)


Yes! We can all stand proud for having done the Titi Loops.

(To see more photos for the day, Click here)




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