I had always wished I could climb the highest mountain of Malaysia, from my opinion conquering something as high and extreme like Mount Kinabalu would be one of the unforgettable achievements/highlights of my life, which is something to tell to my children when I'm old and rotting, how interesting and adventurous my life has been when I'm younger and hyperer.
So as I marked this date 20 Oct 2010, (20102010 - nice date huh?), accompanied by my new Deuter hiking bag and my most favourite partner in crime, MHB, I left two small-sized-5 foot prints from the base to the top of Mount Kinabalu.
The journey started at around 10am, we actually reached the base starting point quite late. I admitted that I underestimated Mount Kinabalu. I thought it's gonna be an easy climb, I mean hey, what so hard about climbing a mountain anyway? Any other mountain would be easy I must say, but Kinabalu really put me in an extreme both physical and mental test.
With continuous climbing up the stairs and paths to the peak of 8km distance, it was one of the most HELL-NO thing I ever did in my life. I did think of turning back couple of times during the climb, but since I already paid for it (and apparently NOT CHEAP!), I pushed myself again and again to take one foot at a time up the neverending stairs.
There were few times that I actually fell down to my butt, exhausted and mentally drained, crying out loud, "I'm gonna die, I really gonna die!!" but thanks to MHB who constantly encouraged me and physically pushed me from behind to move up and up and up until we reached the top. (Kheili mamnun, kheili kheili ziad)
Finally after almost 8 painful hours, we reached Laban Rata, which is the resting area before we head again to the peak of the mountain.
We had our dinner there as the weather turned extremely cold I had to cover myself like those eskimos in the north pole. There's no hot shower or any hot water back at the cabin, so imagine how me and MHB is cursing everytime we get our hands touched the water to wash our face and do our business there.
After getting ourselves a two hours not-so-good sleep, we gotta get up and geared ourselves up for the next mission, which is the peak! My body is so painful and the weather is so extremely cold, this is where I lost to Mount Kinabalu --> the scorching coldness. This second climb though is shorter distance than the previous but it's tougher. With barely any trees around to shield us from the unmerciless cold heavy wind, I hugged myself climbing up to the peak.
We managed to reach the Donkey Ears Peak, when at last I blurted to MHB;
Me: Do you wanna carry on? (cause I know I had enough already)
Me: ~laughing~ seriously?
MHB: Yeah, I had enough, this is so crazy, not worth it.
Me: ~continue laughing~ oh thanks God
So we just sat there, enjoying the sunrise and I sang,
"If I die here, if I just die here, would you die here with me and just forget the world..."
~adapted from Snow Patrol's Chasing Cars
At last we made it on Mount Kinabalu, though not reaching to the peak, but it was close enough. Both of us think it was the best we can do and we're proud of it still.
Then down the mountain we go.
Mind you, going down is not as easy as you think.
We got our asses beaten by a group of old grandma and grandpas from China, how embarassing is that? VERY...
Mount Kinabalu --> CHECKED