Sunday, October 21, 2007

Sabah Update

As expected, this trip turned out to be an adventure. The first time i actually came to Sabah was when i was 16. That was with RMC when me and batchmates hiked up Kinabalu.

Fast forward 15 years, Kota Kinabalu is not what it seems.

I reached KK on Thursday night.

Day 2
The very next day, i drove down to Papar, about 50km from KK (from herewith, distance is from KK, unless stated otherwise). That took me almost an hour. That is a slow 50km/h average.

Road to Papar

On the way there, the scenery were not much difference, it's sea on my right and mountains on my left.

Crocker's Range

South China Sea

My work in Papar took a long 5hours, usually, i could complete it in max of 3 hours. It took longer that day because of site and traffic condition at work site.

Upon completion, i drove to Kuala Penyu, which was about 60km away from Papar.

To avoid driving all the way down to Beaufort and then move up back to Kuala Penyu, i took the Kuala Penyu Ferry Terminal route, which brought me into some kampung area and the 60km took a painful 90minutes to complete.

Yea dude…it’s 29.6km of Kampung road to go to the terminal

But i was pleasantly surprised to see what i had to cross right before i could reach Kuala Penyu with your car on the barge!


A short ferry ride across the river mouth! Think of the Ferry ride across Sungai Perak from Teluk Intan to Sitiawan many many many moons ago.

Then, I saw a rainbow

I managed to complete the work within 3 hours and by then, it was already dark, Sabah gets dark earlier than usual, we all know that, and I was sort of worried about my journey back to KK that evening, it started to rain by the time I got onto the last ferry for the evening (the next one will start at 9pm) and it felt surreal as I listened to the radio about traffic updates on radio at 7pm (which was telling how jammed, as usual, KL is) and it is almost pitch black where I am.

Eerie-ly dark

Scary? You bet.

Reached back in KK at 9.30pm, treated myself to a hearty Korean dinner and called it a day.

Day 3


I need to find my way to Keningau, I was excited as I know I will be driving across the Crocker’s Range. I expected some long winding steep road, but I guess I was really surprised with what I had to drive through.

It was

Here is a few pics to share. Don’t hold your breath, The climb is like Genting, only higher, longer and more scenic!

Morning journey there, sunny and clear

Journey back in evening, foggy and cool!

or was it slippery and scary?

I will upload more pic once I get faster internet connection. So do come back to see them!

All I know about yesterday’s trip to Keningau is that I’m glad I managed to finish the work there in 4 hours, or else I would be driving in dense fog and seriously it’s not gonna be fun, or funny.

In fact the return journey was way more scenic as the view from the highest peak looked like this…at 4.30pm.

simply aweswome

Come Tuesday, I know I will be going through similar landscape again, this time with Mount Kinabalu as the backdrop. I will be going to Sandakan. A good 353km away and will possibly take more than 5 hours of driving.

Day 4
Rest day, it’s Sunday! I managed to browse through Gaya Street Market, the Central Market and the Fish Market. Seafood are dirt cheap, comparatively. Fancy abalone for RM50/kg? Or scallops for RM48/kg? Both come with options to pack back, frozen in ice.

Market by the sea

Today I managed to get internet connection too, which explains this update. Somehow the hotel I’m staying in (Radius International Waterfront) has internet connection in room and lobby but I can’t seems to be able to log on, maybe this company’s laptop too old???

And thank you Tengster, for linking me up with Mr. Concreter, which has given loads of insight for my coming journey to Sandakan.

To quote Mr. Concreter :
"From KK... The hazard are mostly mist after rain since the road from KK to Ranau is very twisty and when it rains the fog and rain will be very thick. DO be careful as there are many lorries plying this route since this is the only route from KK to SDK, LD and TWU. When you reached Ranau, the road are very straight. You will pass by Telupid and you will see Sg. Kinabatangan on your right. Do be careful as it is the rainy season and there are chances landslides may happen. Do not go above 100KMH even on bright sunny day. Suggest you start your journey at 630AM since it is already bright here and reach SDK around 1PM.

BTW, from KK to SDK, whatever line you use is useless since you won't get any signals unless you happened to pass by Pekan Nabalu -> Kundasang a rest stop before reaching Ranau, then you will pass by Telupid, you will have receptions, and all the way to SDK, very rare till you reach Checkpoint, which is Mile 32. It takes an hour from Mile 32 to SDK town. I am at Mile 5. Give me a buzz. At Checkpoint, there will be a road block and they are quite particular if you happened to bring along tools but if you are in a Ninja King with your shades, then forget it la.

Also lots of goodies there. Durians, fried peanuts..."

I don’t know about you, but I’m looking forward to the Durians.

I’ve been calling back home every other hour. Missing Ryan and wifey. It’s hard especially when I’m not used to be away from them for a long period of time. I hope to be able to get back by month’s end.

Ryan now can walk (yes, he can walk at 11 months, in fact, it was more like stumbling run initially) and has learnt how to say papa. As just as I finish writing the sentence before this, Wifey called and say he pointed to my pic and say papa-papa-papa. I could only imagine how that is like and not see it.

I miss Papa

Papa and Mummy took me to a lot of Uncles and Aunties House for Raya, my second raya, technically!

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