We start late yet again on Day 2 despite our guide, Mizi Belantik relentlessly screams at us to pack and start trekking. The first day seems to lock the timing for us to start hiking for the subsequent days we begin approximately at 11 am except for the last day where we start at noon. Before we begin our journey on Day 2, I find a spot near the river and decide to try out the silky water feature on my phone.
Until Kem Sg Jeruk, there is still no steep elevation to ascend. Kem Sg Jeruk is another campsite next to a river. Some of us fall in love with the campsite that their eyes shine at the idea of spending the rest of the hiking days at Kem Sg Jeruk. As you may find out later, it leads to half of the group abandoning the hike to Gunung Berhid and Gunung Aler and heading straight to Kem Sg Jeruk on the way back.
Since we are way behind time for the Yongyap summit attack, we have decided to take a vote on the course we are about to hike. The first option as offered by the guide is to head straight to Kem OGKL, and attempt the peaks of Gunung
After the long break at Kem Sg Jeruk. Here, some of us eat our lunch pack, and I prepare hot drinks. Once you have started the ‘dapur haram’, it’s hard to turn down your exhausted friends’ request for hot drinks. After three rounds of preparing hot drinks, I pack my stove and trek on to the last water point where we are expected to fill up and carry 1.5L water for personal use and 1.5L for company use. There is no water point on the summit of Gunung Yongyap, which is also the reason why not many hikers are willing to camp at the peak of Gunung Yongyap.
From Simpang Bubu to the summit of Yongyap, the trail turns to a steep ascent of a mix between the damaged path and high wall. At first, I pair up with Nowa who manages to catch up with me slightly before reaching Simpang Bubu. We make the push because the plan is to watch the sunrise on top of the summit, which is known for its 360 degrees view. It feels like we have walked for quite a distance when we bump into a group of 4 hikers. In between heavy breath, I ask the group if the summit is near. It doesn’t take them long to hit me with reality. This is just the beginning of the steep ascent, they said.
Slightly before getting dark, we stop to take out our headlamp. We hear footsteps from behind. The lovebirds, Apek MMU and Awin, make their approach. We decide to ascend together as a team because numbers give comfort and security when the vision is limited. Since my wilderness survival is so lacking that I do not change the battery of my headlamp, I have to make do with dim light to the summit.
From here, it becomes difficult on many levels as I have to climb up using the physical strength and heavy backpack load and swing my body over to reach the tree branch which not within arm’s length. Due to the elevation gain and steep wall, it is harder to find a sturdy tree branch to step. I call this problem, a short people’s problem. There is one occasion when I am stuck and do not know where to go and what to do. Don’t panic, don’t panic. Apek MMU calls out. They decide for me to remove my backpack and navigate me through the terrain. For this reason, I start to question the decision to camp at Yongyap summit as I do not know how other hikers would fare out on the misadventures.
We reach the summit around 8.30pm disturbed at how bad the trail has become since our last trip to Yongyap some years ago.
The summit is known for its cold temperature as it is the 6th highest point in Peninsular Malaysia standing at 2,168 m. Kudin helps me out to pitch the tent because I am disoriented. The groundsheet and tarp have been laid out. Those who have arrived before me are gathering ration and starting to cook dinner. Muddy soil from the struggle up the wall covers my clothes. After changing to clean clothes, I retire to my tent still thinking of what do I get myself into and why. Are not that the questions we always find ourselves asking after a strenuous hike?
Once I have gained the composure, I go to the kitchen to help out. By the time the other hikers arrive around 10 pm, the dinner is almost ready, and the hot drinks await them. When we hear the first person from the last group arriving, we quickly grab cups of hot tea and wait for them at the summit entrance. They look exhausted but relieved that they have finally made it to the summit. By 10 pm, I am back in my tent, ready to call it a day. I do not know what tomorrow brings, but it is definitely another adventures!
Read More: Hiking Yongyap-Berhid-Aler 2019 (Part 1/3)
Read More: Hiking Yongyap-Berhid-Aler 2019 (Part 3/3)