The Climb of Mount Kinabalu

I went to climb Mount Kinabalu on the 22nd February 2018. This was my second attempt. My first attempt was almost a decade ago in 2010.

When I had decided to climb Mount Kinabalu again, I had started to be consistent in my training in December 2017.

I went for short (less than 5km) and long hikes (more than 7km) twice a week. I also ran for short distance (less than 5km) 2 to 3 times a week.

In my first attempt, I made the mistake of thinking that climbing Mount Kinabalu was going to be easy. Having that thought in mind, I didn’t bother to train as much as I should have. I pretty much lived an unhealthy lifestyle. This time, I vowed to not make the same mistakes that I did.

On the 21st February, Bobby and I drove to Kota Kinabalu.

A tour bus picked us up at 6 am in the next morning. Drove for 2 hours and arrived at Kinabalu National Park before 9 am.

Clear sky and we could see the Mount Kinabalu from the Kinabalu National Park

After we were done with the paper work, and getting our packed lunch, we drove for another 15 mins in a van to reach Timpohon Gate. This is where we started our climbing journey. We started exactly at 10am.

Seeing porters carrying heavy load climbing up and down Mount Kinabalu is a common sight

I would say that the first 5km was an easy climb for me. In fact I did really well. I reminded myself to sip water whenever I was thirsty and eat the food in the packed lunch.

With my average pace at that time, I hiked 1km for every 45 mins.

This video was taken on our way up, showing we were above the clouds.

Me at 5km point. Before migraine strike

After a few metres that I passed 5km, out of nowhere my migraine kicked in. I was taken by surprised when I felt the sudden thumping in my head. I told Bobby and Bobby asked me to slow down.

Both of us had to monitor my heart rate from there onwards.

What I had noticed was that whenever my heart rate reached 150, the thumping got stronger, it became painful and I couldn’t bear the pain.

My walking pace became slower and I had to stop many many times so that I can slow down my heart rate and the pain in my head was bearable for me. I cried several time because I couldn’t bear the pain.

From 5km to 6km and we had to walk for a bit to reach the base camp. It took almost 2 hours for from the 5km point to reach Laban Rata restaurant/resthouse.

We arrived at the 6km point. The building behind us is Laban Rata restaurant/resthouse

Imagined my relief when we finally arrived at the door step of Laban Rata. It was 4.40pm.

One of the guides who accompanied us had chuckled and asked me why I cried on my way up. Was it because I felt overwhelm?

I replied no, and explained that I had a migraine.

Once inside the guide handed a key to our room and advised us to rest first before we eat our dinner. He reminded us that the restaurant closes at 7pm.

My legs were already sore from climbing and I couldn’t believe that I had to walk up the stairs to the first floor to go to our room.

After we settled in our room, we went downstairs to have dinner. I made sure that I ate just enough. With the thumping in my head, I preferred not to eat but then I needed to feed myself so I have the energy to continue to climb to the summit the next morning.

After Bobby and I were done with dinner, we both went to sleep at 6pm. I took 2 panadol hoping that the migraine subsided. I also put my healing wands next to me when I slept.

I woke up at 8pm with the thumping in my head. Having the migraine made me think twice of whether I can climb to the summit. I was considering of not joining but the reminder that the whole trip cost about BND 700/person really made me think twice of not going. If I didn’t climb to the summit, then I’ve wasted BND 700 and it will be the same with my first attempt long ago.

I took another 2 panadol, hoping the panadol worked their magic and continued my sleep.

At 10pm, I woke up and the migraine hasn’t subsided at all. Bobby was up and I told him that I took panadol and my migraine was still there. Bobby asked me if I drank enough water. I said I didn’t. He gave me a bottle of water and asked me to drink. I took small sips and that was when I realized that I was thirsty and I was probably dehydrated!

I told Bobby if my migraine wasn’t going away at 12am, I didn’t think that I could climb to the summit. I took 2 more panadol then I went back to sleep.

Woke up at 12am and the thumping has lessen. I guess I was dehydrated. I drank more water and just for precaution I took another 2 panadol and went back to sleep again.

At 1am, I woke up and my head felt better. There was a slight thumping but it was manageable.

At 2am, we went downstairs to the restaurant to have a light meal before climbing to the summit.

Ready for briefing

At 2.30am, while other climbers were leaving, our guide brief us on the summit climb. At 3am, we started our climb.

Climbing up in the wee really cold morning was something I wasn’t prepared mentally. It didn’t help at all that I wore the wrong attire, my wool gloves were thin, despite wearing 2 tights, they weren’t able to protect me from the super cold wind.

However, I was fine for a few hundred meters when the trees shielded me from the cold wind.

It was when there were no more trees surrounding us and we started to climb up guided by the white rope that I felt the cold wind.

The cold wind was howling non-stop.

A few hundred metres from Sayat Sayat hut, I felt I couldn’t take it anymore. I was tired, I sat down, cried and I was shivering. I was thinking about quitting already.

Bobby sat down on my side and hugged me so that I could feel his warmth but sadly it wasn’t enough. He persuaded me to continue the climb until we reach the Sayat Sayat hut.

I was mentally exhausted from trying to withstand the cold.

I got up and continued to use the white rope to climb. At some point I had to crawl on all fours as well.

We arrived at Sayat Sayat hut at 5am. We were required to show our name tag when we passed the hut.

Next to the hut there was a small room. Bobby asked if I wanted to rest there. I said yes.

The room was thankfully wasn’t as cold when compared to the outside environment.

I told Bobby I didn’t want to continue to the summit. Tears was flowing. I was shivering and my teeth chattering. I just wanted to hide in there.

Bobby again persuaded me to continue. He even gave me his blue jacket and his neoprene gloves. He gave me time to rest.

After 20 minutes of persuasion, I came out of the little room and continued my climb.

Bobby was holding my hand and he literally had to pull me to walk forward/up. Bobby reminded me to take one step and took a breath and repeat. We monitored my heart rate to make sure it was less then 140 and so to keep the thumping in my head minimal.

I was still on my way, but to reach the 8km point felt like forever to me. The cold wind was still howling. It was so freaking cold.

Bobby pointed out to me that the sun was coming up. I turned my head several times to see the sunrise and handed Bobby my phone to take pictures of the sunrise.

Picture cannot do justice of what we saw that early morning.

Bobby also took a video of me walking up to the 8km point.

To be honest, I didn’t get to enjoy the sunrise because all of my focus went to withstanding the cold wind. I also didn’t enjoy the experience.

We finally arrived at 8km point and the sun was already out. The air was still cold but with less wind. Time was 6.20am.

I wanted to take pictures but my fingers felt numb inside my jacket. Bobby took our selfie.

From here, it was just another 500m to the summit.

I sat down next to the sign. I was tired, I felt pain on my left knee, and I told Bobby I gave up. I was putting my foot down that I wasn’t going to walk further up. I told myself, that was it. No more. My mind was telling me that I was insane for trying this out for the second time. I felt very much disempowered.

I told Bobby to continue his climb because I knew that he wanted to reach the summit but Bobby didn’t want to leave me alone. Thankfully there was another couple who was on their way back and I just went with them and Bobby continued to the summit.

Bobby reached the Low’s Peak for the second time. The above picture was taken by Jinus using Haji Zainal’s camera.

Below is what was shared by our mountain guide, Jinus.


I had never been exposed to a cold weather of 3°C until that day. Since I was struggling to cope with the cold weather and wind, my thought was no wonder I was born and raised in the equator. I’m really not a fan of the cold weather.

I also don’t recall feeling that cold when I was at Laban Rata a decade ago. I was even out in the early morning in my normal clothing and walked around to take pictures of my surrounding. I guess it wasn’t 3°C back then.

I then began my descend with the couple.

The sun was getting higher and yet it was still cold. I tested the coldness of the air by removing Bobby’s glove in one hand and let my hand out. When it was really cold, I shivered and put on the glove back.

On my way, I was still very emotional. My face was wet with my own tears. It was after I had calmed down, I finally began to look around my surrounding and see opportunities to take pictures. I could only do it when my hand could withstand the cold air.

This picture is one of the few that I managed to take

On my way back to Laban Rata, I felt pain slowly creeping up in my left knee. I slowed down and at some point the couple went on their own pace and I was left behind.

Despite me leaving early, Bobby managed to catch up with me when we were closer to Laban Rata.

We arrived at Laban Rata after 9.30am. We had breakfast and we got ready to leave at 10.30am.

I told Bobby that I wanted to leave early because I knew that I was going to be slow because of the pain in my left knee.

For the first 2km, the pain was manageable. We even had a few brief stops to take pictures and videos.

I think this is one of the few areas at the mountain that was affected by the 2015 earthquake

It was after the 2km going down that the knee pain started to become unbearable. It was painful for me walked down the stairs. Since the pain was on my left knee, I compensated with my right knee and it didn’t take long for both of my knees suffered for the rest of the distance. My toes also in pain mainly from hitting rocks accidentally and the rubber shoes that I wore didn’t have the toe protection.

I became upset at myself, at the condition of my knees and toes. I relied on Bobby to support me and I could tell that we were significantly slowed down by me.

Bobby asked me to take panadol again. He thought they might help to reduce inflammation in both of my knees.

Not long after that, there was a group of young adults. One of them saw me having difficulty stepping down stairs and she offered both painkiller and spray. I said no to painkiller and yes to the spray. She sprayed both of my knees. Unfortunately it didn’t give me the desired effect that I had hoped. I was still in pain and deep down I really wished that I stopped moving and just stay put. I had to use my anger to literally forced myself to walk because I wanted to reach Timpohon Gate before it’s dark.

We arrived at Timpohon gate at 4pm. We waited for a van to pick us up and transported us back to Kinabalu National Park. When we got there, our mountain guide handed us our colourful certificates.

We had to wait for the rest of our group to arrive at Kinabalu National Park. We had waited for several hours. We finally left the park at 8pm and arrived at KK at 9.30pm.

Both of my knees were hurting and I couldn’t lift my knees without screaming in pain. My knees and thighs suffered for about a week after coming back from the climb. I hated stairs very much that week.

Day 2 after Mount Kinabalu climb in a Hotel. Happy that we were about to go home

Here are a few lessons and highlights from my climb

Going up from Timpohon Gate to Panalaban Base Camp

  • This part of the journey is the easiest. I was fine until I reached 5km. If I didn’t have the migraine, and able to maintain my pace, we could have reached the base camp in less than 5 hours.
  • Always listen to my body. I took sips of water when I felt thirsty and ate my lunch pack which consisted of 1 piece fried chicken wing, 1 hard boiled egg, 2 bananas and 3 sandwiches whenever I felt hungry.
  • I packed light. I wore a running vest. I put my phones, my healing wands, a box of panadol, a small Oreo, 2 chocolate bars and my lunch pack in it. Bobby brought bottles of water in his bag along with other things that I needed for the resthouse.
  • I made sure I was fully covered and put on sunscreen to avoid sunburn.

At Laban Rata restaurant/resthouse

  • It was advantageous to arrive in the afternoon. The sooner we were up there, the sooner we acclimatized to the environment and of course we get to rest and have more sleep for recovery.
  • Water was cold. It made me reluctant to go to toilet but when I had to go, I had no choice. There was a heater but it wasn’t working. No hot shower at all. I think a couple of people tried to switch it on and every time they did, electricity went out. This happened several times which interrupted my sleep.

When we first got into our room, it was so freaking cold! Someone left the window open. I tell you, you don’t need air conditioner up there! The bedsheets, blankets and pillows were cold. That made my sleep at 6pm more than uncomfortable. I was shivering, I was already wearing my jacket and I was under the blanket.

Thankfully when I woke up at 8pm, I could feel that my body had already adjusted to the environment. It wasn’t that cold anymore. I was comfortable without my jacket and my feet were no longer ice cold.

I never like to take pills to treat my migraine because my body is sensitive to their after effects. However, I do take them sparingly and only if I tried my own natural healing methods and they didn’t work fast enough to get rid of my migraine. Those 2 days were the most ever I’ve taken panadol in so many years!

Going up from Panalaban Base Camp to the 8km point

  • Taking one step at a time with a breath is necessary as well as continuous climb without stopping
  • Appropriate attire is important and necessary to be able to withstand the cold wind. What I was wearing (2 long sleeves, 2 tights, thin gloves) weren’t a sufficient attire for the cold environment. (One of the other climbers shared he was wearing 7 layers!)
  • Might be best to wear heat tech clothings (sold at Uniqlo), loose pants, thicker jacket and wool gloves and balaclava.
  • I regretted that I wasted 20 minutes being in the room next to Sayat-Sayat hut when I could have used that time to continue my climb. If I did, I might have arrived a lot earlier and might be able to view sunrise from the 8km point.
  • There also wasn’t much drinking when going up. I didn’t drink at all.

Climbing down from 8km point to Panalaban Base Camp

  • As I descended, the closer I got to Laban Rata, the thirstier I became. Unfortunately I didn’t bring a bottle of water with me because Bobby was carrying them in his bag. Bobby caught up with me when it was less than 100m to reach Laban Rata.

Climbing down from Panalaban Base Camp to Timpohon Gate

  • Wear appropriate shoes. My toes accidentally hit rocks several times on my way down. My toes were bruised and they were in pain while I was still walking.
  • Might be better to wear hiking shoes/boots. The reason why I was wearing rubber shoes is because of the grip. It has excellent grip but unfortunately it doesn’t protect my toes.
  • It could have been a better experience if I wasn’t in pain. And the muscle spray may be able to numb the pain if I had sprayed a lot earlier when I wasn’t in so much pain. And that was just my speculation. I’ve never use those sprays before and now I do think to bring it along with me when I do my long hike.
  • I was fully covered and put on sunscreen to avoid sunburn.

Overall experience

This experience really showed me how when I was under duress, it is so easy for me to want to give up (it reminded me a lot when I did my first open water swim in Labuan).  I had wanted to give up several times but Bobby wouldn’t let me. He knew that I would be more upset at myself if I had given up.

All the training that I had done to prepare myself for this climb didn’t prepare me for the altitude and the cold wind, weather and environment.

The longest that I hiked so far is 16km and I could finished it in 4.5 hours or less. But the hike from Laban Rata to the 8km point and back to Timpohon gate was almost 12km but it took me close to 12 hours to complete. I have never done a workout that took me 12 hours ever in my life! No wonder my knees gave away.

After experiencing climbing Mount Kinabalu all the way to 8km point and back, I have to say that I have a new found respect for those who can withstand the cold and still able to reach to the summit within the allocated time. Previously I didn’t know how hard and difficult it was to climb under such cold environment and now I know.

Despite my painful knees and thighs, bruised toes; I noticed that my ass is a lot nicer after the climb and my stretch marks in my inner thighs had disappeared! Magic eh!

As much as I was in pain for most of the time, this experience made me addicted to hike or climb other easier mountains. I know… Crazy isn’t it.

I have more videos and pictures than I posted here. I have uploaded the videos on YouTube. I put the link below. They are in the order that I took them.

Below is the collection of images that we took during our climb.

Images and videos are copyright of the owner of this blog as well as those credited to their respective owners.

Until my next adventure!

My Sprint Panaga Triathlon

I decided to sign up  for the Panaga Triathlon as Bobby will be there as life saver and he encouraged me to participate.

Categories offered were sprint and Olympic distance.

Sprint distance is

  • 750m open water swim (1 loop)
  • 27km cycle (2 loops)
  • 5km run (2 loops)

Olympic distance is

  • 1500m open water swim (2 loops)
  • 35km cycle (3 loops)
  • 10km run (4 loops)

I had to consider how slow I was and I also didn’t want to finish late and so I signed for the sprint distance.

3 weeks prior to the event, I practiced open water swim at Berakas Beach and also Tungku Beach, I cycled twice and I took an easy walk instead of running.

A week before the event, I was just resting my body. I didn’t do much activities either.

The day before the event, I already made a plan to be home by 5pm because I wanted to be in bed by 6pm and slept at 7pm.

Since the event was at Panaga Seria, I wanted to be there by 6 am to collect my race pack. I planned to leave home at 4.30am and that means, I had to wake up at 3.30am to get ready.

Last time, when I was participating for another sprint triathlon, it was easy for me to sleep at 7pm the night before. Somehow I was struggling this time.

I had trouble sleeping because I was nervous about the event. Plus, my body had decided to release a lot of emotional baggage instead. I could barely sleep at all.  I probably had 1-2 hours sleep only.

The morning of the event, after I arrived at Panaga Club, I went straight to get my race pack. While I walking towards the hut where the organizer was, I saw the huge waves from a far.

I was so so surprised at the huge waves.

My thought was it shouldn’t have been a huge waves that morning because the night before was a full moon. Usually when there’s full moon during sunset or sunrise, the sea would usually be calm with low tide.

I have a good reason to be scared of the huge waves.

I’ve tried to swim in those condition before and I failed to get pass the waves. To be honest, I would rather run than swim in the ocean that morning.

Unfortunately, the organizer decided to continue the open water swim instead of replacing it with a pool swim or even with a run.

I decided to not use my swimming buoy because from my previous experience before, the buoy won’t help me much in those huge waves. In fact it becomes a hindrance.

Below is the video that I took of the ocean before we started the swim.

We all started when the organizer sounded the horn.

I braced myself as I got into the water. My focus was to swim and get passed the waves.

Fives minutes in the water and I was no where getting closer to passing the waves. Waves were crashing and to make the condition worst, the huge waves were close together. When waves crashed, I made sure that I went into the water and hold my breath. I could feel that I was pushed back by the waves. This happened several times and I could see that I wasn’t moving forward. All my efforts felt futile.

I started to feel tired and I felt very much that I was struggling. Right there and then I asked myself do I want to continue or do I want go back to shore.

I was accessing my own condition and considering how tired I was and I didn’t want to risk it, I decided to turn back.

I tried to swim back but I had to be cautious of the waves crashing behind and on top of me. At some point I almost tumbled like in a washing machine but realizing my mistake I quickly straighten my body. As I couldn’t held my breath frequently anymore, I managed to get my head above water to breath and I lifted my hand and waved.

Thankfully someone saw me and I heard a shout. Someone came with a paddle board and asked me to hang on tight. I did although I felt like I didn’t have anymore energy in me.

I was safely brought back to shore.

That open water swim was definitely one of the toughest that I’ve tried.

I asked if I was disqualified but was told I could continue to bike and run if I wanted to and I did.

I was mostly bike and ran out of breath because I was tired from the swim.

My concern with the cycling route was that I had to cross several roundabouts. I had got to be extra vigilant.

However, I was pleasantly surprised when there was at least one police officer on every roundabouts and at important turns and junctions. Having their presence made the ride a lot smoother.

The run route was a short loop of 2.5km. Since I was doing a 5km run, I had to run twice through the same route.

Since I wasn’t familiar with the run route, route marshals were there to direct the participants.


I managed to finish in under 2 hours 30 minutes. I received a medal for it.

I can’t say that I completed the sprint distance because I didn’t swim the official 750m that day. However, I did complete the cycle and the run.

Bobby said I gotta practice to swim through rough waves and learn to get pass them, but I’m so not freaking ready to go through that again.

Images are by Ruben Bholasing

To more future triathlon!

My first 10km night hike

I’ve done night hike before except it wasn’t 10km. It was probably just 4km.

Since we didn’t do any long hike last week, I decided to join the Beach Bunch’s Reece night.

A few things that I got to prepare for the night hike were water for my hydration pack and Bobby’s, mosquito repellent and compressed socks (Bobby got this from TriUltra as part of the 57.5 race pack). Bobby also packed 3 night lights. I was considering to wear short sleeves and shorts but decided against it because bobby said it could be cold. So I wore the usual long sleeves and pants.

By the time we arrived at Jerudong beach, I could see there were already a few hikers who arrived earlier than we did.

We also met 2 of our students. Rudierwan and Robert.

We had briefing given by Rizan from Beach Bunch.

Group photo was taken before we started.

Then we started to walk at 6.30pm.

I was able to maintain my pace for the first 3km. My speed was above 5km/hr.

Since we started to go uphill, my speed dropped to 3.6km/hr for the next 2km.

It was after that 5km, I started to feel the hike was getting easier even though we went up hills several times. my speed going up hill was 4km/hr and above and when it was flat, I speed went up above 5km/hr.

I couldn’t believe myself when I started to walk faster and we overtook 4 groups of people on our way to Agro Park.

After 8km of hiking and we went downhill, I started to pick up my pace to a light jog. I was able to maintain my speed for 1 km until I reached another uphill slope at 9.14km. This was when I stop jogging and just walked again until I reached a flat terrain and I jogged until I reached 10km.

I surprised myself to be honest. I didn’t expect to be able to do the distance in 2 hours 6 minutes.

There are a few things that made huge differences from this hike to my first hike using the same route.

  1. Hiking was at night, it was cooler and I can afford to push myself a little bit since I wasn’t concerned about heat.
  2. We were going the reverse route and it was a lot easier!
  3. Bobby reminded me to pace myself and not to push myself early and I therefore had time to warm up for the first 5km.
  4. Once I warmed up, my walking pace on flat terrain and going downhill was 5km/hr or more.
  5. My walking speed going uphill was consistently more than 3km/hr.
  6. I used the momentum of going downhill to jog uphill after the 8km.

Reached Agro Park before 9pm.

I stretched for a bit before we were looking for Robert for a ride going back to Jerudong Beach. But Bobby managed to find another ride with a couple who decided to cut short their hike to just 10km. We joined the couple instead.

We didn’t know the couple, we were all strangers and while in the car we got to know them.

Funny story really! Turns out she was a second cousin of mine from my mother’s side. M like Brunei is really a small world! So here’s a selfie of Ayu and I.

I stretched more when we were dropped off at Jerudong Beach because my knees was hurting. While stretching, I told Bobby I was so freaking hungry and I also craved something with soup.

We went to WYWY and I got asam curry prawns!

Happy that my craving was satisfied by the end of the night!

To more night hikes!

Facing the fear of cycling alone

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My brief afternoon ride 😃 #cycling #relive

A post shared by Hayatti Rahgeni (@hayattirahgeni) on

I rarely cycle alone on the road.

One of the main concerns that I have if I cycle alone is what if I have a flat tire.

I experience this once so far and unfortunately it happened during a race. The feeling that I had that time was helplessness, and I was upset at the thought I would DNF (did not finish). Fortunately there were two male cyclists who helped me and I was able to complete the event.

I haven’t learnt how to change bicycle flat tires.

Not having the skill to change bicycle’s flat tire made me think twice to cycle alone and to cycle further on my own.

There are other concerns that I do have when I cycle alone.

  1. I’m responsible for my own safety on the road. Which means be alert, not be distracted and eyes on the road at all times.
  2. I need to communicate (using hand signals) to other drivers of where I’m going (left, right, slow down).
  3. Back up plans if something’s happened.

When I cycle with bobby, I don’t worry much because most of the time Bobby is the one leading me. He would be the one doing the hand signaling and I just followed. Flat tire? Not to worry, Bobby can change it for me. Tired? We can go back. Hungry? We can stopped by at kedai runcit along the road and buy food. Exhausted? We can rest for a while to recuperate before cycle again.

It feels so safe to cycle with Bobby.

And so when I decided to cycle alone a lot of fears do come up for me.

Major fears like what if I get hit by a car or got into self accident and no one was there to provide assistance. At least with Bobby there’s two of us.

Having the fears above did stop me from cycling alone. I’d rather stayed at home and not exercising at all.

Now that I’d rather be active (except when I’m injured), I had to rationalize my fears and come up with ideas and back up plans so that my fears don’t stop me from cycling alone.

Below are the brief list of how I rationalized my fears.

Concern of getting hit by car – Be highly visible. Wear bright colour shirt/jersey. Cycle in the morning or afternoon. If at night, cycle at lighted roads and/or empty road, use extra lights, reflective vest etc.

Concern of self accident – Cycle on good condition roads. Be alert. No distraction. Having quick reflexes might be helpful.

Concern of flat tire – Find a short loop to cycle. Choose a distance that you don’t mind walking your bike. For me personally, I would go for 5km loop or less.

When fear is overwhelming this is when I should consider working out at home which I’m pretty lazy to do. I’d rather go out to exercise really.

I’ve done cycling alone by myself. The furthest I’ve done was 20km on a 5km loop. The recent one that I did was cycling from home and cycled for 9km and back home (as shown by the video above). I was nervous before I started because it’s a small road and there are houses on the left and right where people do drive in and out of the road.

Nevertheless I did it! I survived the 18km loop without any harm to myself and my bike!

I can’t say that I look forward to cycling alone coz I’m not. But I will do it if I need to and if it’s necessary.


To more courageous adventures!

My 10km hike from Tasek Lama

I’ve never done a 10km hike from Tasek Lama before and since I’ve done 16km hike, I decided to give it a try.

This time we started from Tasek Lama. From there we went straight to Laur and then Karamunting then to Wasai Wang Jumat and headed to Radisson Hotel and finally headed back to Tasek Lama.

Going through the 10km route from Tasek Lama is the reverse route that I usually hike when I go to Sarang Helang. The route was some what unfamiliar and it gave me a new “view” of Tasek Lama.

We started after 9am. As usual I covered myself from head to toe. I wore UPF 50+ hat, long sleeves, knee-length pants and knee high socks. Since the socks were thin, I wore another thick socks so I don’t get blister like I did on my 16km hike.

Arrived at Tasek Lama and Bobby showed me the route that we were going to take on a map just outside the gate.

Since we were going the reverse direction of the usual route, we went up the long stairs to go to laluan berita.

Once we arrived at the top, we walked for some time and stopped briefly to go over the map.

We continued to walk along laluan berita. There were a few short hills that we went through.

After walking of more than 1km, we arrived at the simpang which we will come out of Karamunsing later on.


From here we went to a route that I’ve never been before.

On the way to Laur the route was shaded by tall trees for most of the time. A few spots were wet and also muddy. We also went up hills twice if I’m not mistaken.

After a few kilometers of walking, we got to the exposed area just below the next hill which is Laur.

We reached the top of Laur and we rested for some time.

I took a video of the view on top of Laur.

We reviewed the map again before we headed to karamunting.

The route from Laur to Karamunting isn’t as shaded as the previous route. Most are exposed areas and the sun was finally out in the middle of the day.

We passed by a graveyard on our way to Karamunting.

As we approaching Karamunting, there were a lot of this particular plant on our way. I took a video of them.

Do you believe me if I tell you that there’s a “Hotel California” at Karamunting?

Bobby has been there several times. I had been here twice so far. We had the pleasure of meeting the owner too!

Wanna have a look at the interior? Check the brief video below.

From here we headed to Wasai Wang Jumat.

The trail was going down hill.

I was surprised to still meet people on our way considering it was almost 12pm.

After we passed by the small stream, part of the trail looked like the picture below.

We passed by the flat trail and we went down hill from here.

There were 2 wasai. I just call it wasai 1 because I don’t know what’s called and Wasai Wang Jumat. I could hear the wasai 1 on our way.

Unfortunately because wasai 1 isn’t really on the way to go back to Tasek Lama, we skipped it and just went to Wasai Wang Jumat.

We continued our hike until we reached Wasai Wang Jumat.

Bobby took a dip to refresh himself and I just took videos. After bobby was done, we headed back to Tasek Lama. We went up hill this time.

Bobby took a video of me while I was going up the hill.

We were at laluan berita again and Bobby looked at his watch. So far both of us tracked more than 7km hike. And so in order to get 10km, we had to go through a longer route which was a different route from the one we had started with.

We also met 2 other people who were planning to go through the same route.

The longer route was flatter with very few going up and down hills. It was easy for me to go faster. My pace was more than 5km/h.

We finally got out of Tasek Lama.

And we were greeted by this view.

We jogged going down hill and walked faster on the padded road.

I was looking forward to hydrate myself with coconut water. I felt like I couldn’t walk fast enough to reach one of the stalls.

And I did it!

I personally feel that the hike could have been done faster. I took time to take pictures and videos which involved a lot of pauses and stops along the way.

The best part after a long hike is I get to indulge eating one of my favourite foods!

I have to say I’m addicted to these long hikes!

I have the collection of the videos that I took during the hike uploaded to YouTube. They can be viewed below.


To my next long hike!

My first 16km hike

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My 16Km hike was captured using Relive. So so cool…

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I was never interested to do a long hike. My interest was sparked when Bobby asked me if I wanted to join Beach Bunch Night Trail Challenge 2017.

There are 2 categories, 10km and 20km. I doubt that I could hike 20km but I was confident that I could do 10km.

The 10km hike for the night trail challenge started from Jerudong Beach and ended up at Agro Park.

I decided to see if I could hike 10km under the cut-off time 2 hours.

I did have 2 back up plans.

One was to hike 5km and headed back to get 10km.

Second was to hike a total 16km from Agro Park to Shahbandar and back to Agro Park.

I was planning to just hike 10km total. Started from Agro Park, hike half way and headed back.

The original plan was to start at 6.30am on Sunday last week but since it was raining in the early morning we waited until rain had stopped and started much later.

The sun was out and it was a hot morning. I decided to cover myself from head to toe. I wore long pants, long sleeves with a hat. I put on sunscreen on my face and also my hands.

It was almost 10 am when we started our hike.

It was my first time hiking from Agro Park. The trail was flat at first and there were several long hills that we went through for more than 5km.

I was tired after 2.8km. My guess is because I’m not used to long slow incline hills. But I quickly recovered went down hills.

Just before 4km, I said to Bobby that I was just going to go for 5km and headed back. By this time, I went up hills slower.

We went through 3 big hills as we were approaching 5km and the thought that I had to go through those hills again if we head back changed my mind.

Bobby shared after the last hill that the terrain will be more flatter with short hills.

So I decided to just go through the 10km and went straight to Shahbandar.

The terrain was wet and muddy most of the time. Good thing that I was wearing my “Temburong shoes”.

After 8km, my thighs started to tighten. I felt the discomfort and resisted the urge to stop and rest because I was in a hurry to reach Shahbandar. I also noticed that my hands were already clubbing. My fingers were chubby and wasn’t easy for me to fold my fingers and close my hands. I haven’t had clubbing hands for a very long time. I used to have it when I started to hike more than a decade ago. Told Bobby about my hands and Bobby said to refrain from drinking my water. I agreed.

We went out of the jungle trail next to substation and walked on highway to Shahbandar.

I was already exhausted and I was so so glad when we finally reached Shahbandar.

Arrived at Shahbandar after 2.5 hours.

Quenched our thirst with 2 coconut water each and rest for a bit before we head back to Agro Park.

My hands were less clubbing now probably due to less stress and also resting.

We went through Empire’s road from Shahbandar. The terrain from here on wards are jungle trail, a very very long gravel road and padded roads.

I was fine with the jungle trail. Surprised that there was a lake next to the jungle trail! Water looked so calm and it made me want to swim in it but Bobby advised against it because there might be dangerous animals like snakes and the like.

After we passed the jungle trail, there was gravel road. There was no hills, there was a gradual slope of going down and up.

After walking for a few kilometers, my knees started to hurt and the soles of my feet felt the heat from the stones. I could feel the rough stones through the Temburong shoes. It felt very much like my feet were tortured to be honest with you.

Unfortunately a very old injury resurfaced and made walking through gravel road a lot more unbearable.

I was so glad to finally see PLM building once we were out of the jungle. I had wished that we parked the car closer so I didn’t have to walk further.

We got to the car after 2pm and went straight to have our lunch.

At the end of the day, I bloody well surprised myself! I never hike for more than 6km before and I did it!

I need to remind myself of a couple of things for my next long hike. Wear UPF 50+ gloves and long socks. Half of my hands were sunburnt and so are the exposed areas on my ankles. Continue Reading

Saving my hair after it was damaged by bleaching

I mentioned in my previous post that ruining my hair and scalp is something that I didn’t want to do.

Unfortunately I was feeling rather adventurous this week and I did exactly that.

I’ve been thinking to lighten my hair for the past 2 weeks now because I’m planning to henna my hair again. My hair is growing rather fast and so I can see the roots of my white hair.

I checked YouTube for videos on how to do that and also recipes via internet articles.

Lightening the colour of hair is essentially the same as bleaching the hair.

Using an oxidising agent on the hair so it can break down the coloured pigments of the hair, leaving the hair colour lighter.

I tried it and it was a disaster for me.

My hair became extremely dry, brittle and coarse. My hair was badly damaged, my ear and scalp was burnt and my whole head smells like bleach even after I washed with shampoo and conditioner. When I was combing my hair, I could hear this weird sound coming from my hair!

I panicked when I realized that the result didn’t turn out as I had hoped.

I quickly applied the body oil that I had use before onto my scalp and hair and an hour later I noticed there was very little change as if the body oil wasn’t enough to fix my hair.

Fortunately, I had HHB’s (Hair Henna Brunei) moisturising hair oil delivered home the next day and I went for it.

First thing that I did was I cleansed my scalp and hair with clarifying shampoo. I wanted to get rid of any left over chemicals from the bleach off my head. After I was done, I towel dry my hair.

Then I apply HHB’s moisturising hair oil, gently massage the oil onto my scalp and once that was done, I massage the oil onto my hair.

Since I did this in the evening, I decided to sleep with it.

The HHB’s moisturising hair oil is rather thick unlike the body oil and so I was informed best to cover my head with shower cap if I was going to sleep with it.

And so I slept with my hair soaked with the HHB’s moisturising hair oil in a shower cap.

The next morning, I washed my hair with shampoo and conditioner.

Originally I planned to just shampoo my hair without conditioner but after I was done with shampooing my hair, I could still feel the heaviness of the oil weighing on my hair and so I conditioned my hair.

It was after I washed the conditioner off my hair that I could feel my hair was so freaking soft! I don’t ever recall my hair was ever that soft in my life!

I towel dry my hair afterwards. My hair felt so silky and so so smooth (Thank God!!!)

I was just so relieved that I could save my hair.

I’ve got HHB’s moisturising hair oil to thank for my soft and also silky hair!

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Was bleaching my hair during the week day and my hair was ruined because of it! The damaged done was insane! My hair became extremely dry, they felt pretty much like straw, my ear and scalp was burnt and my whole head smells like bleach! Even after washing with shampoo and conditioner. I got panicked. I applied the usual hair oil that I've been using and it wasn't enough to fix my hair. So I turned to @hairhennabrunei and used their moisturising hair oil last night and really hoping it could help my hair. This morning I shampooed and conditioned my hair and to my surprise, my hair was a lot softer and felt silkier than before. I'm so freaking relief! Love the feel of my new hair and will be using it to restore my hair. Won't be bleaching my hair for a while now. Owh pictures were taken using natural lighting and no filters. #hairhennabrunei #moisturisinghairoil

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If you’d like to have more info of the HHB’s moisturising hair oil, click here. I also have shared with HHB the steps that I had taken using their hair oil to save my ruined and damaged hair. You can also visit their instagram.

Will use their hair oil to restore my hair.

To having soft and silky hair,




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