Sunday, June 16, 2013

Selangor : Chilling @ Sungai Chiling Fish Sanctuary (Pt.2)

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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 Ride - Kepong 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. Bring along some fish food to feed them and many will draw even closer.
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 take-away the kaya (egg jam) puffs from Teng Wun Bakery in KKB, they have crunchy, melt-in-the-mouth crusts.
6. Bring your bike bags along; it could be necessary to bag the bicycles.

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


In Part 1, we had taken the train with our bicycles from Kepong Sentral Station to the Rasa Station.

Riding up slope, via Kuala Kubu Bharu towards our destination; we had made a quick stop to enjoy the scenic Sungai Selangor Dam.

Riding further up slope we had arrived at the Sungai Chiling Fish Sanctuary, our tale continues from here ...


Chilling @ Sungai Chilling Bike Packing Adventure Ride Map (click for Map Link)
12:25 pm - From the entrance we had to take a 1.2 km. un-tarred road to the Fish Sanctuary itself. Some with hardier bikes rode in, others not wanting to hurt their precious bikes pushed.

Me? I was more careful with my bike; not wanting the chain & gear-sets to be affected by grime, I rode partway in and carried it partway where the road was much rougher.

Reaching the place, I was not very impressed. It just looked like a large lawn with changing rooms on one side and a food/drink stall at a corner.

It is only when one gets into the water that one appreciates why this place has been preserved as a sanctuary.
The fishes here are so friendly and so used to having people around that they do not swim away when approached.

In fact they drew close, nibbling on our feet hoping to get some food. Throw some fish food in and more of them will come close, swirling in the water, gracefully feeding.

I look upwards, upstream - it was more rocky with some whitewater forming.
Hey! What's that red spot there?

Oh... it's Patric who really knows how to relax, lounging in the rushing water while basking in the sun.

Overhead, there is a swing bridge - this connects to paths that will lead further inside the reserve, to the Sungai Chiling Waterfalls.

Back at our part of the stream, most of the guys were getting ready to immerse themselves into the water.

While most of the girls were content with sitting at the riverside, just dipping their legs into the cool water.

I was contently playing with the fishes and then a thought struck me - the water is so clear and the fishes so friendly, why not take some underwater photos of them.
My Olympus camera is the sports type, waterproof up to 3 meters deep. But I have never put it under water before - skimming the water surface, yes. So what better time is there than now for me (or rather my camera) to take the plunge!

And here are the fishes, nonchalantly swimming...

... happily feeding away ...

... with their reflection from the bottom of the water surface. They are Kelah fishes.

Yes, these fishes are beautiful but lest one is tempted to take any of them out, pay heed to the warning sign that Nash is pointing out - there is a hefty fine and/or jail term that will be imposed.
Oops... Nash is smoking here, hope he does not get penalised.

Time to frolic, and frolic we did like little boys again. What's Kwan doing with his two palms in a grasping stance, some Tai Chi Kongfu move?

These other guys did even better than us. They brought chairs along to sit in the water while seeping some cool beer - real lounging water lizards they are!

"Yoh! Time to get out of the water for a while, and savor the food at this stall!" Tailim shouted to me. Nash seems to be having fun there already.
They have pretty good Goreng Pisang.

(Photo by Tailim)
And an even better and remarkable Laksa. The soup of this had a spicy zing while the laksa noodles were with a springy bite.

At this nice, lovely, cooling place, we could really bond with each other ...

(Photo by Johnny Ng)
... and also be friends with the fishes and Nature.

Signboard showing opening days & time with rules and regulations.

2:00 pm : Time to leave! We had been here for almost 1-1/2 hours.
Kwan snapped this photo of us, trying very hard to get all of us in and at the same time reassuring us "no worries, all your mothers should be able to recognise you!"

I was bringing up the rear, with the two sweepers - Yong Sing & Md Radzi behind me.

And the two Cikgus (teachers) in front.

SuiT was coasting down the slopes "Rempit" style, with her legs resting on the bicycle rack.

We stopped for a short rest & regroup at the junction to the Sungai Selangor Dam office.

Continuing on, we were soon on the shadier roads...

... and back onto the flats again.

2:35 pm - We are back at Kuala Kubu Bharu, the ride down was fast, taking us only 35 minutes of smooth gliding down the slopes.

A last regroup before we enter the town center.

We are eager to get into the town, partly because it is a beautiful colonial place and mainly...

(Phtoto by Tailim)
... to start our hunt for food; our hunger was long overdue for sustenance.

We split into two groups for lunch; for our group, it was at the food stalls near the KKB Police Station.

The drinks came first : Coca Cola? No, it was locally brewed herbal tea put into these bottles, It was very nice & "cooling" after a good ride.

Some of the dishes we had with our white rice - Stir Fried Kailan with Garlic and...

... Minced Pork with White Tofu & Salted Fish. This one was really excellent and went well with the white rice.

After lunch, we rode over to collect the kaya puffs (the one we ordered earlier from Teng Wun Bakery, remember?). Kim here with nice floral riding pants, and... tattoos on her arms? No, that's a floral pattern, skin-color arm sleeves. I must get one of these, but with a macho design - perhaps with dragons?

Over at the bakery, Yong Sin was receiving the puffs; counting them "1,2,3.... er, 1,2,3... Ok, all here - correct."

This is the kaya-puff we bought to take-away. There are at par with those from Sin Eng Heong of Ipoh (... see blog). This one here has a thick, crunchy, multi-layered crust that sort of melt in the mouth.

Some of us took the train back from the Kuala Kubu Bharu. Others like this little boy and me took to riding back to the Rasa Station, to take the train from there.

4:30 pm - We are back at the Rasa Station, those who drove here packed their bike into their cars and drove of, waving their goodbyes to the rest who will be taking the train back.

The rest of us took a last look at the quaint place and said our goodbyes to the place and boarded the train.

On board the train, Nash was up to his antics again, "proposing" to Seang Nee. His pose on his knees with puckered lips is just Classic Nash.
It was a good, hilarious end to our adventure.

Till the next time - RIDE WELL & RIDE SAFE.

Many thanks to :

Ride Organizer & Leader : Johnny Ng

Ride Sweepers - Md. Radzi & Yong Sin Ng

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