|I arrived back in KK and jumped on a flight to Gunung Mulu National Park. My time in Mulu was limited so i immediately planned out all of my activities for while i was there.
First up was some adventure caving in Racer cave. Adventure caving is when you strap on a helmet, a head lamp and head into a cave prepared to get dirty. Se spent two and a half hours trekking about a kilometer into the cave and back. In order to get from one end of the cave to the other we had to scale rocks and climb up and down ropes. We got extremely dirty and it was a lot of fun. Inside the cave we saw snakes, spiders, cave crickets, bats and swiftlets (these little birds that also live inside the caves).
Later that afternoon i headed out to see the famous Deer Cave. Deer Cave is the largest cave passage on the planet and is home to approximately 3,000,000 bats. The chamber itself was very impressive and the ceiling reached up to 160 m in some places. The entire cave wreaked of Guano (bat poo) as it virtually covered the entire floor. When we exited the cave we set up shop on the viewing deck to witness the 3,000,000 bats leave the cave for the night in search of food. At around 5:30 or so the first wave came and they just kept on coming. Seemingly endless rivers of bats continued to exit the cave for at least the next hour. I'm sure they weren't finished but it was getting dark so we had to head back to the park headquarters.
The next morning i went to see a few more caves including Clearwater cave. Clearwater cave is known for having a river running through it and for being the longest cave in Southeast Asia. The cave is still being mapped out and as of now it is over 170 km in length. Each year scientists spend about a month exploring the cave and the official length gets longer every time.
After some action packed days in Mulu i headed back to KK to prepare for my mountain climb. I arrived at the mountain at about 9 am or so. After getting all of the necessary paperwork done and eating a breakfast i was on my way up the mountain. The hike to the summit is 8.7 km long and the height at the summit is about 4,100 m, making it the highest mountain in Southeast Asia. The first day of the trek involves hiking the 6 km to base camp where you then spend the night. At about 2 am you wake up, eat breakfast and attempt the remaining 2.7 km to the summit. The reason for this is so that you can catch the sunrise and enjoy the view before and clouds build up. Despite being entirely uphill, the first 6 km wasn't as bad as i thought it would be. I kept a pretty good pace going and arrived at base camp in about 2.5 hours. At around 3 am i headed into the darkness towards the summit. The summit climb was far more difficult than the initial 6 km. Portions of the climb involve going straight up a pretty steep rock face, often with the help of ropes. After about 2 hours or so i finally arrived at the summit where i enjoyed a spectacular sunrise and some unbelievable photo opportunities. The walk back down the mountain wasn't quite as strenuous although my knees and calves definitely took a pounding. All in all the mountain climb was probably one of the most difficult things i have ever done and is definitely something i am very proud of.
Tomorrow i am heading to the Perhentian Islands where i plan to spend the remaining days before my flight home relaxing on the beach and doing some leisurely diving.