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Trailing Korbu-Gayong 360 degrees 4-7 Nov 2010

Height: Mt Korbu (G2) at 2183m, Mt Gayong (G4) at 2173m
Location: Ulu Kinta, Perak
Level of Difficulty: 4.5/5

Terrain: Day 1: 7 hours to Kem Kijang. Steep climb 75 degrees along leech infested trail till kem Seroja, gradual climb 45-75 degrees to kem Kijang. Need to cross a dangerous 75 degrees ravine. 7 River crossings.
Day 2: 6.5 hours from Kem Kijang to Korbu peak. LWP at 1.5 hours from Kem Kijang. Gradual steep to Kem Botak, then monkey climb over waist & shoulder heights, climb over tree branches and rope climb on 75 degrees rock. Camped at Summit.
Day 3: 6 hours to OA bikers pick up
Team: Tee, Siau Chin, Phoebe, Katak, Bear, CK, Cat, me
Guide: Stanley W
Cost:RM50 for 2 way motor ride by OA, about RM60 for guide, RM15 per pax for 2N dinner ration, RM10 per car for 3D guarded parking, RM7 per pax for rental of 4men tent, petrol & toll RM50?  
Why I choose Korbu-Gayong: I heard its notorious steepness and memorable climb over tree branches to cross from mountain to mountain. Was held on long Deepavali weekend. It supposedly rainy season but the weeks before was not raining daily, so I decided a go.   
Remarks: The scenery view from Korbu to Gayong is amazing, worth to go. Summit is very cold especially raining, and there are sandflies at both campsites. During the hike, I thought it would be suffering trip for me, but surprisingly is not, probably due to regular hiking weekly.

2) Kg adidas Cap Bintang bought from Bidor proved too fragile. Tee introduced his sturdy stringless kg adidas Cap Goco worn to g. Tahan, g. Benum and g. Korbu-Gayong. I bought a pair of stringed Cap Bowling at Kepong shop and tried out. Cap Goco smallest size was way too big for me (for men, probably).

The adventure:
Korbu-Gayong - Attempting 2nd and 5th tallest in Peninsular Malaysia all with backpack up to summit of Korbu. The notorius steep of Korbu Peak, the possible bees and agas bites and definately, 360 degrees view of not only Mt Korbu & Mt Gayong, but also Triple Boundary (Junction) Mountain, Mt Yong Belar, Mt Yong Yap, Mt Bubu, Mt Tok Nenek and others. The super cold weather at Korbu Peak was the determining strong factor to log heavy tent (for gals) despite the 3-4 hours to carry water supply from LWP to Summit for camp, and its notorious steepness! Agas was another tiny factor, but I read agas exist at Korbu summit!   

Day 1:
We parked our cars at small area near waterfall outside the vicinity of Dam, guarded by an Orang Asli. Looked like a recreation area with gate & pondoks. As we repacked our bags and weighted as equal as possible (Phoebe and I: 16kg while TH, CK & Cat at 20kg) among our food ration teams, several motorbikes vroom-ed near us. Our solo limos! The ride along the dam was sacred, as we cannot enter unless accompanied by Orang Asli, or obtain permit from Jabatan Bekalan Air Perak. Some hikers chose to walk along the 3 hour tar road during the nite and camped overnite. Bike ride took us 45 minutes to reach the starting point and started our trek at 10.20am. We crossed several rivers, over a 75 degrees blockade, narrow paths and even climbed over huge fallen trees that I can't even feel my leg on the ground! There was a scene to climb from river to narrow trail-curve into jungle path, which I was hesitating simply cos there is alternative way to climb from bigger space. My instinct saved me when the big red bees attacked Cat, Phoebe and TH in sequence order (I think I was behind Cat initially). TH had imbalanced trekking and almost fell, resulting in cramped legs. And I, with difficulty in carrying backpack comfortably. The trail from waterfall to Kem Kijang became wider and gradual steep, 45 to 75 degrees. I recalled I was kinda lazy to move on with the weight behind, but waterfall was a treat. We took total 7 hours to reach Kem Kijang where we had showers, fresh chicken & fried rice cooked by Phoebe, and built fire. And I saw a lovely fairy while eating- it was a big firefly..  

Day 2:
Woke up at 6.30am but everyone asleep. Simon woke up and cuckoo-ed. I took 1 hour to pack my sleeping bag+mat, wash up, business & spray Mosiguard, 1 hour to dress up, cook & eat breakfast and 1 hour to pack for trekking of the day. I felt shoulder+neck pain, whoa.. We started trek to Korbu Peak at 10am instead of planned 8am.  We stumbled upon reddish Durian Hutan and LWP where I did bring extra 2*1.5L bottles of water besides a bottle of 1L 100plus. The trail were up and downhill 45 to 85 degrees. There were rocks and branches to grab and push over our legs, and all rock climb with ropes. The most challenging was climbing over tree branches. So this was notorious scary climb I heard, but it wasn't as big as I imagined. When I did it I had to put my leg over a branch to reach a top ground so as not to fall, that was pretty wide leg and at waist level! With backpack as well! Simon was at the top to pull us up for support. Then we came to Botak Hill where we can see Korbu peak in front of us, yet another 3 hours! At Botak Hill, Tee was talking about his tough Kg Adidas, and I noted my new Cap Bintang stunts were soft, 2 of them wana cabut d.
Korbu peak
We managed to arrive at Korbu peak on average 6.5 hours. The heavy down pour started, when we build our tents and flysheet. It was so wet and windy that we shivered. I have heard that the Korbu Peak was damn cold, that it was advisably to sleep in tent. Well said, it was cold cooking & eating outside with wet bags and groundsheet, and slightly wet clothing. We had quick dinner (I forgotten to bring rice for 4, but Simon made up with his rice packs) and slept early that I forgotten to check its temperature. I had wet sleep cos the heavy rain seeped into tent and sleeping bag. If Phoebe had not insisted on bringing 3kilo 4-men tent, we would had sleepless nite.

Day 3:
Woke up at 5.30am, but I forgotten to spray Mosiguard the nite b4 and I believed I gotten some bites on my face that nite and wee morning. Sunrise watch was a failure due to mist, and my, the trail to sunrise point is so far.. We left at 9am daypacking using same route for sunrise point, and I found out my walking stick's stopper missing. The trail slippery, soft and narrow with plant bushes. Up and downhill till we came upon mossy forest like magic. Then we head to some open trails towards to Gayong Peak, nice 360 degree view. 

ravine trail from Korbu Peak (top left) to Gayong Peak

Triple Boundary /Junction Mountain
Gayong peak that is flat.


 I was moving slow during the day, even descending. Hoping no heavy rain! With prayers, God really gave small rain abt 415 pm till reach campsite, just in time the last 3 of us just left steep downhill. And my right shoes almost koyak, one stunt made a hole or two.There were leaves on the trail to protect us from slipping during the rain all way. The rain gets heavier when we set up our tents + fly. Wow, God is good at its timing! By 7pm, a group of 24 malay hikers arrived to build camp at upperside. I know I gonna cook dinner first to feel hungry tummy, so I collected water and set the food ready b4 it get dark by 7pm. Sandflies everywhere, and kemenyan were lit. Only 3 of us had pasta and Campbell mushroom- CK was topless enjoying cool weather while I was still under raincoat, and Catherine yet to change, haha.. Since my tentmates were lying in tent, and I was wet, I changed outside tent, risking sandflies biting me. As I brought my wet trekking wear to hang under flysheet, I lost one side of white socks! I walked past CK who was laughing, but I acted zombie cos I was in undershirt and tights! I travelled to and fro tent and flysheet ground looking for a white sock but lost it. It was the longest sleep without breaks I had that nite, cos I had strange dream.

Day 4: Woke up at 6.30am. This is the last day! happy indeed am I, everyone still asleep and no more cuckoo-eds... but the Malay hikers came over our side for river. I have done my business when no one around, that's good. And only I realised umbrella was useful when Joey asked for it to do her business at 8am. :) When everyone was awake and had breakfast, and about to pack, honey bees came! Wet kemenyan was unable to lit fully. The bees got us packing fast that some of us had to delay business to Kem Seroja.  At waterfall, it started to rain heavy and we were expecting high river tide. Stanley rushed us, and I panicked. I knew it. And I doubt if my Kg Adidas could survive up to this day, my nite socks can be seen from below of right shoe- I had trekked half covered right feet, causing a hole of a first layer socks (I wore two pairs of socks. The panic caused a rush and fear that I slipped into a mud in hole while trekking on a tree bark. Whack! God, carry me! Siau Chin who was in front of me carried me up, and I heard Tee called Stanley. The next thing, I saw Stanley cut in front of me at some dangerous trails to make sure I crossed safely. Trekking under heavy rain was not my cup of tea, I had told him before this trip. After last river crossing, as 2nd hiker I saw a big, green dragonfly landing in front of me, but before I could open my bag for camera and TH came near, it flew away. Then I saw Rajah Brooke butterfly flying in front of me- beautiful creation! At last, the dangerous blockade, which I had to overcome my fear of height phobia. TH was behind me, followed by Cat and CK.. and we came to flat trails close to starting point.. Stumbled upon muddy turn, where Simon looked at other corner and told me he saw fresh wild boar footprint. We went ahead quickly and came upon slippery motorbike trail downhill- I fell twice and managed to balance on trail covered with leaves. We arrived at starting point with OA waiting for us with bikes at 3.15pm. The trek has yet to end when we arrived at carpark cleaning up, to discover leeches on our legs and bodies!  

Overall the trip was amazing, as I had heard of its tough hike for its steepness. I can rate it similar to Liang East-West for its trail and weather. I barely had intensive trainings: jog, walk up the staircase and swim for 20 minutes each few days before this Big Day, in addition to weekly easy hikes. Even my muscle recovery took only one day instead of normal 2-3 days. I am glad my fear was overcame by God's grace despite the missing items and with supportive teammates. 

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