Sunday, June 15, 2008

4 hill climbs and conquering Genting Highlands

I didn't knew if I could pull this off. That's the reason I just kept mum on the idea of cycling from Hospital Orang Asli to the peak of Genting Highlands. The day before, I had cycled 90km going up 4 major hill climbs (Ampang hill from both directions, bukit hantu, and Perez).

The next morning, when I woke up, I thought, why not give it a try. The only thing sore is my palms, from gripping too much on the brakes going downhill.

After parking at HOA, I started cycling at 8:50am. At the start, there was a convoy of cyclist with mixtures of mountain bikes and road, followed by a black 4wd. After some exchanges of 'hi', the leader asked me to proceed.

I was cycling at the average speed of 17km/h, which was pretty slow. I kept it that way, so I could reserve it for the monstrous climb ahead.

I also did met with 2 other cyclist who were fixing the tyres, but I didn't knew them (sorry), but somehow they knew me from the blog.

After exactly an hour, I reached Genting Sempah with total distance of almost 16km.

Riding from HOA to Genting Sempah was easy.

The next part, with a constant steep climb of around 4km is so tough, I was sweating over my bike. Legs were slowly mashing the pedals. And this was just the start. The difference between cycling and running uphill, for cycling, you can't stop. Your feet are clipped to the pedals. And to unclip, you have to use some force to turn your feet sideways. Sometimes it work, sometimes it doesn't. So the best bet, is just keep on pedalling.

This part is so tough, it makes bukit hantu so much easier.

Finally, I reached the point where it goes downhill, giving some rest to the legs. Then it was another climb to Gohtong Jaya. The climb at this part was much easier. I haven't refuelled since HOA, so I had roti telur with milo ais. While I waited for food, I ponder at the next killer climb up to Genting. You could clearly see the buildings high up, with clouds swirling.

After eating, it was back to cycling.

I knew this part will be hard, with a constant climb for 9km. Soon i find myself sweating all over the bike, with feet constantly slowly mashing the pedals. I was always on the stand up mode, because I couldn't even push the legs while sitting down.

Then, as I neared the hairpin where the road gradient suddenly went up to 20 percent, I had to grip the bike so hard, and pushing the legs down, to force the bike uphill. If I had lose it, I would have fell. I cycled a few more meters, then stopped for a rest.

This marks the last 4km to the top. And none of it is easy. In fact, this part is the hardest part from HOA.

The only motivation is seeing the km marker set up each 100 meters. At least I could see some progress.

I stopped a few times, notably 0.9km left, to catch some breath. Some drivers cheered, while others just watched. Trust me, 0.9km to the finishing point, is just as steep. I almost wanted to quit at 200 meters left. Then I noticed some people cheering, so I just have to finish this. I didn't hide the hardship from my facial expression, because I was giving everything I could to reach the glorious arch.

After that, and some moments later, I could now feel happy I conquered this $*!#@&$@! mountain.

Time: 3 hr 01 min (excluding resting at goh tong)
Distance up: 35km

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Descent.

I didn't stop long at the peak. Descent was a pretty fast affair, except the part where I had to cycled a few km uphill again after passing gohtong jaya. Then it was a small climb at Genting Sempah back to HOA.


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To summarize, I think I do not have the right gear to do the job. The back gear was too high. I am now looking to get a smaller gear, if I ever wanted to go up Genting again. Probably that was why I was struggling all the way up.

That said, it's an experience that cannot be substituted with words. Only those who have done it, knew how physically and demanding it can be. For avid cyclist, try this at least once in your life.

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updates:



I've just came back from changing to a size 25 for the cassette. I have just found out I was doing it on a size 21. No wonder it was mind boggling hard.




Following the black truck with some riders...

View at HOA to Genting Sempah..

At the start of the climb at Genting Sempah, this marks the next 4km uphill.


View of Genting top...

I was really sweating out....

Descending for the moment.

Refuelling at the Mamak, while pondering at the top of Genting.
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After the dramatic incline after the tight hair pin. I had to stopped for some rest.


Just looking at this climb is nerve wreaking...



Stopped before 0.9km. It was so near, yet so high up...

Took a picture of First World hotel before descending.





It's so fun going down...


Pagoda...

14 comments:

Meng said...

Hi,

I was the cyclist you passed on the old Gombak road. My friend Andrew had a flat tire on the descent; luckily he did not fall. I have met you once on the Pacesetters Sri Hartamas 20km route.

I have been cycling for umpteen years and I have never dare try Genting summit. Kudos to you.

I am thinking of trying to do triathlons as well but maybe next year.

Seng Meng

yipwt said...

hi meng,

Yeah...I think we met. But I am pretty bad with names.

I think using mountain bike would be easier than road bike.

You could start doing relays for triathlon :) As long as you nail all 3 disciplines, it would be fine.

CapArnabBrand said...

MOst people try Genting after a few yrs of cycling.. you nail it in what? 2 months? Superb la you...

John said...

I thought you're crazy in running. Now, you're also crazy in cycling. What other crazy things you've not done? Anyway, kudos to you and keep up the craziness spirit! hahaha!

yipwt said...

caparnab,

I've just got my bikes 4 weeks ago. :)

john,
Another crazy thing to do is to swim selat melaka...but that can wait.

zulhassan said...

solo pun ko berani naik atas tu.

tenaga aku tak nafikan ko boleh tapi paling busan kalau mekanikal.

taniah, me belum berani lagi nak naik.

Raymond said...

caparnabbrand-Yip took up cycling in less than a month but have conquered Broga n Genting!!!!!!
Honestly,I took up cycling in 2006 and only started to climb up peres hill in 2008!!!I never knew Peres exist until Yip brought me running up there seriously!!!
John-Yip is 1 helluva daredevil!
Yip-ever thought of cycling the whole peninsula msia in....maybe a week?

Tey said...

wah....cinya....!!!! salute salute...!!!

abuomar said...

yip,
kau memang ada tenaga. boleh berlatih untuk ironman pula. selain endurance kena buat interval training utk dapatkan kepantasan. utk dapat tip basikal ikut joo ngan group atau sepertinya. maaf, bukan ingin mengajar sekadar pandangan saja.

yipwt said...

raymond,

Yea..we should find a week to cycle the whole of malaysia.

Tey,
TQ,

Abuomar,
I am going to register for ironman this month. So kena start training :)

dEx said...

Hi goodday
Really inspired by your tremendous achievement and tackling Genting Highlands.
May I request the route you took to ascend to Genting Highlands? Can't seem to find a map to link to this.. thanks a million.
dex@comic.com

yipwt said...

hi dex,

There's 2 route. The one I took is from Gombak Hospital Orang Asli.

http://wikimapia.org/#lat=3.2505513&lon=101.7248154&z=14&l=0&m=a&v=2&search=kuala%20lumpur

Before UIA, don't go through the toll, take the left turning just before the toll. Then head north until you reach the HOA.

gud luck

Victor Chong said...

Bro, want to ask your opinion. Do you think is doable me for me to cycle up to genting highlands like you. Any advise on bikes or training?
By the way I am 53. How many rest stops?

Or crazy idea?

Victor

Desmond Chew said...

Try 11-28T cassette or change your front chainset to compact 53/34 that should helps.