Tuesday, April 30, 2013

Selangor : Scenic Sekinchan Day 1 (Pt.1)

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Selangor : Scenic Sekinchan - Day 1 (Pt.1)
Sungai Buloh to Sekinchan : 20th April 2013
Small Group Ride - 
Distance covered : approx. 76.71 km.
Time : 7:45 am - 5:25 pm
Time Taken : approx. 8 hrs. 40 mins. (including stops for breakfast, lunch, photo shoots, rest from heat, etc.)

Route Recommendations :
1. The weather does get very hot from noon to 4 pm. Do stock up with additional water to fight off dehydration.
2. The pandan coconuts are refreshing and very sweet.
3. Seafood at the Jeti Seafood Restaurant at Pasir PenambangKuala Selangor is cheap & really good.
4. The Durian Chendol is ok only, try it for the sake of trying.
5. Sekin Fisherman Village Resort & Hotel is well landscaped with comfortable rooms; do stay there even if you don't cycle there.
6. Don't miss the beautiful sunset at Sekinchan beach.
7. Seafood at Wan Lau Restaurant in Sekinchan is also Cheap & Good.

This is page 1 of a 3 page blog, click on following to go to other pages :
Scenic Sekinchan Day 1 (Pt.2)
- Scenic Sekinchan Day 2


It was most fortunate when I was invited to join the Outdoor Xplorer (OX) team for a bike-packing ride to Sekinchan. A close riding buddy of mine had requested for them to include me in their ride.
It was indeed a good ride with a group of friendly, joyful people for company. It was also a ride that pushed my biking endurance.

Bikers at the Metropolitan Park - flying kites as part of bike ride.
The previous weekend some other friends & I were cycling at the Kepong Metropolitan Park. We also did some kite flying there. So Uncle Bil suggested flying kites at Sekinchan too. Now that's an idea!

We will be meeting at the Sungai Buloh LRT Station. Some of us would be driving there with our folded bikes, but there were concerns about parking there as the place can be quite dodgy - especially for parking overnight.
So a couple of days prior, I drove and did a recce there.
Goodness, I saw a few cars with all four tires punctured by vandals at the car-park. We will definitely not be parking at the station.
Fortunately, about 1.5 km. away is the Sungai Buloh Hospital with a very large car-park and guarded too! So we will be parking here and ride over to the train station. Uncle Bil and Felix will be taking the train from Sentral to meet us at the Sungai Buloh station.

THE RIDE - Day 1 (Pt.1)

Scenic Sekinchan Ride Day 1 Route Map : Sg. Buloh>Kuala Selangor>Sekinchan (click for Map Link)
Our route will take us from the Sungai Buloh KTM Station to Kuala Selangor for lunch, a little further ahead for Durian Chendol and finally to the Sekin Fisherman Village Resort & Hotel, where we will spend the night.

7:45 am - We rode off from the station. There were nine of us; Felix will be leading and Uncle Bil will sweep, while Oon will marshal in between the riders.

Due to the heavy traffic along Jalan Kuala Selangor (the road leading from Sg. Buloh to Kuala Selangor) we were firmly instructed to ride single file.

We rode up an interchange that goes over the Guthrie Highway, we will be heading straight onwards but will pass by this highway that will intersect our route several times.

8:40 am - The first part of our ride was at a leisure pace to warm us up. It took as close to an hour to cover the 12 km. to our first destination, the Sun Star Restaurant where we will be having breakfast.

Most of us had Roti Chanai while others had Nasi Lemak.

Uncle Bil was in a jovial mood - getting to ride is one of his passions in life, and getting to eat while riding makes it even sweeter. And to add to this a pretty Siew Yung sitting next to him.

Finished with breakfast, we started off again. Anticipating a hot weather, some of us started covering up with baklavas, arm sleeves, etc.
Alex looking very cool here with his shades on.

Upon Kwan's request, we stopped at the nearest Petronas petrol station.
Here, it can be seen how well covered up we are - Uncle Bil's one almost like a scarf and the SuiT's (in red) one totally covering her face.

Kwan's quandary - he forgot his sun-glasses and got new ones from the petrol station. Here he is with his new pair of sexy white shades that went well with his blue helmet and scarf.
He does look like the character from the "Invisible Man".

9:30 am - We are 14 km. from the Ijok. That's where we will turn off from the main road into the quieter rural roads.

We stopped for a short rest, but after a while the Felix was pointing ahead "Time to move on!"
Okay, what the leaders says we minions follow. Actually there is a reason for that, earlier riding means less hot.

Further down, there is an Indian temple. It's not very large but as far as I can recall, it has been around for ages.

10:15 am - Reached Taman Ijok Utama. This is a newer part of the original small town which is still a few kilometers ahead.

We are 10 km. from Kuala Selangor, ahead is the right junction to the Kampong Kuantan Firefly Sanctuary. The weather is getting hotter but still manageable.

A few clicks ahead, we made a right turn into Jalan Teluk Piah Kanan, a quiet rural road. We are avoiding the busy Klang-Kuala Selangor main road as much as possible. 

12:00 noon - On the bridge over the Selangor River. The weather is getting hotter, the heatwave is even blurring the photos. But there will be relief for us just slightly ahead.

Just after the bridge we turned off into Pasir Penambang. At that junction, relief was waiting for us in the form of refreshing Pandan Coconuts, and they were sweet too.

Further down the road, we stopped at the Jeti Seafood Restuarant for lunch.

It is a restaurant that sits on stilts and projects out onto the Selangor River.

Situated at the mouth of the Selangor River, with the sea breeze bowing in, it has a right ambiance for a seafood restuarant.

Here's my Brompton bike, with a kite rolled up & tied to it's main frame. Sitting at the edge of a pier, it seems to be floating on the river.

Well, what about the food then?
First came the Seafood Broth; cooked with large prawns and crabs. The prawns & crabs were lightly roasted first before being used to cook the broth - making the broth have that lingering burnt seafood flavor.
Mmmmm..... YummY!

Next came a large plate of Fried Beehoon, stir-fried with chicken and clam meat.
The English Man had ordered the heavier course first, which was a good thing as we were starving after burning calories.

Then came the Spicy Stir-fried Mantis Prawns, spicy with a zing to zap us out of any tiredness.

Stir Fried Baby Chinese Cabbage. Like the seafood, the vegetables served here were fresh, crispy fresh!
Yes! Two vegetables for a balance diet to ensure we stay healthy for our ride.

And lastly, Stir Fried Sweet Potato Leaves.
The food here is cheap & good - at RM15-00 per pax (and that included the earlier Pandan Coconuts!). The Englishman sure knows the nooks and crannies.
(... see more)

A happy lot after having a good meal, we are ready to proceed on to the next stage of our adventure.
What lies ahead? Read Scenic Sekincan Day 1 (Pt.2) to find out!

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You are at - Jotaro's Blog / AhPek Biker / Cycling Malaysia / Selangor / Scenic Sekinchan Day 1 (Pt.1)     | Jump to Day 1 (Pt.2) / Day 2
If you like this, view my other blogs at Jotaro's Blog
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Tuesday, April 23, 2013

KL/Selangor : Songkran Double Loop Trail - Loop 2

You are at - Jotaro's Blog / AhPek Biker / Cycling Malaysia / Kuala Lumpur-Selangor / Songkran Double Loop Trail - Loop 2
                          AhPek Biker - Riding Adventures                       
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.


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.


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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You are at - Jotaro's Blog / AhPek Biker / Cycling Malaysia / Kuala Lumpur-Selangor / Songkran Double Loop Trail - Loop 2
If you like this, view my other blogs at Jotaro's Blog
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