akmal's bike park

akmal's bike park

Wednesday 27 May 2009

RTW 27.05.09 - proper clipless pedals

Went out at 0650 hours. Reached office at 0730 hours.

Stats today (to):
  • Ride time: 34m 31s
  • Dist: 12.67 km
  • Ave: 22.0 km/h
  • Max: 36.2 km/h
  • Odo: 1864.9 km
  • Good doggy: 1

Today marks the day when I first ride with proper clipless pedals. A bit different. Easier, that is.
I don't have to flip the pedal like roadies to get the step the cleat in anymore.

While going through Masai towards Taman Bukit Dahlia via a shortcut, I came head-to-head with a male dog. I was ready to sprint while he's wearing a ready-to-jump-on-you face, coming towards me. When I passed him by, he just went on trotting ahead.
A good doggy award goes to him.

Different mode today. Start to do high cadence. 44T in front, and 4th from bottom on the rear cogset. Penat jugak weh.

I'm nearing to 2000 kms. Perhaps in another 2 weeks of RTW and offroad, I'll be seeing 2000 on my Velo8.

New clipless pedals?

Friday 22 May 2009

RTW 22.05.09 - Cycle Friday!

Went out at 0650 hours.
Aha... after more than a week, I continued RTW this morning, in the spirit of Cycle Friday.
Bro Azizan, you're reading this?

No stats for today's RTW. Forgot to reset the meter.
My ride this morning was basically different. A bit tired, and at times heart pounding fast.
I guess my average was around 20km/h. Total ride time was about 40 minutes.

The tiredness is either from:
The full knobbies I'm using, or
More than a week since my last RTW.
Maybe both.

Anyway, I'm happy that I'm on the saddle again.
A wonderful feeling.

Tuesday 19 May 2009

Biking Reunites

Cerita dia macam ni:

1. Shahriman budak Bandar Tasik Puteri (BTP) balik dari US lepas kerja kejap kat sana.
2. Shahriman bawak balik (musti la...) frame beskal baek punya - Marin East Peak Quad XC 08. Gile panjang nama...
3. BC Kelolo pegi rumah Shahriman tengok frame.
4. Borak-borak, BC tunjuk gambaq bash #176 kat Shahriman.
5. 16 May 5 petang waktu Malaysia Barat, terima panggilan dari BC. Aitt.. apahal la pulak tu... Pastu dok tanya aku penah kerja kat MESB, MMHE ke tak. Konfius. Cek2 balik, suara mmg suara BC, nombor mmg nombor BC. BC kerja part time jadi inspektor polis ke?
6. Rupanya talian BC jadi talian jejak sahabat.
7. Shahriman penah kerja dgn vendor oil & gas, dan kitorang penah involve satu projek dalam tiga tahun lepas.
8. Sebelum tu pun aku penah jumpa dengan Shahriman masa kerja kat MESB, main badminton dgn member dia, Shamsul BV.
9. Shamsul BV tu pulak kerja satu kampeni dengan Azmi.
10. Azmi sekarang ni dikenali dengan nama Wak Labeb.
11. Azmi pun dok kat BTP.
12. Masa 4-5 tahun lepas Azmi kerja kat ofis BV kat KL, dia terjebak dgn mtb.
13. Sesekali bila dia dtg inspection kat ofis MESB tu, hebat gak tgk ada Thule roof rack atas Wira dia (tu baru tengok rack tu...).
14. Bila aku ceburkan diri dgn mtb ni, aku tau Azmi pasti masih berkecimpung dgn mtb. Sesekali ada gak nampak muka dia kat blog tah mana mana tah aku pun tak ingat.
15. Semalam aku borak lama gak dgn Shahriman.
16. Hari ni aku tgk kat blog BC, ada Wak Labeb tinggalkan mesej kat shoutbox.
17. Terima kasih untuk BC sebab jadi link untuk aku dan dua rakan nih.
18. Apa cerita dengan Shamsul BV? Haha... aku jumpa dia masa aku kayuh BFW (back from work) satu petang Jumaat yang damai. Laluan BFW aku tu mmg betul2 depan rumah dia.
19. Dok layan turun bukit, terdengar suara garau kuat yang familiar. Sah sah la si Shamsul BV. Maka aku pun patah balik, borak2 lebih kurang dan hapdet nomor hp masing2.
20. Shahriman, Wak Labeb, kita racun Shamsul soh kayuh mtb jom. Kat PPM Melaka tu pun ada kaum gak kalau dia nak join.

Dunia ni kecik. Dunia beskal lagi laa kecik. Melalui berbasikal, sekurang kurangnya dah tiga orang reunited.
Korang, kalu dtg JB, kita ride sama2 insyaAllah.

Monday 18 May 2009

a week without cycling

It was a week without cycling last week.

Didn't do any RTW, and didn't go for any offroad ride. Missed the Kota Tinggi Rainforest Hash. Okay, except for the few rounds around the housing area with kids on Saturday evening.

Thankfully the bash last week was quite dry, so the bike doesn't need to be washed (read: m/a/l/a/s).

How does it feel? Hmm... different. As in *lembab*. Got to have some spinning on the pedals this week. Felt like doing the RTW this morning, but I can't. Anyway, the lembabness got me. Would have to have a strong will to re-start on Wednesday.

However, I was able to get into facebook (wow, so many updates after a long while) and found this photo from Cycling Asia. A consolation for the week.

BC Kelolo and me at KLMBH Epic Bash #176
photo by Arif Salleh, Cycling Asia

Thursday 14 May 2009

klmbh epic bike hash - 10.05.2009

The word was out, and I heard that klmbh bash #176 is scheduled in May. It's an epic bash. Meticulous planning have to be done if I were to make it.

Applied the riding permit from ministry of home affairs, and granted. Discussed with friends in KL and PG on transport and accommodation. A few nights dreaming about it, and finally on May 10th., I was there paying RM15 guest fee and took my rider number for the bash.

Initially I planned to go alone - by bus. Dino kindly offered me his place to stay and transport to go to Ulu Yam. Kadafi agreed to join me, and we'd go either by his car or mine, with accommodation in The Forum apartment on Jalan Tun Razak. Finally EG made up his mind and the three of us rode his Perdana with our bikes perched atop the roof. Panjang loaned his carrier, adding to EG's 2 readily available.

The journey was smooth, and all things were according as planned. As soon as we got into KL, we headed straight to KSH in TTDI. Where else? Somebody got himself a new camo Fox piss pot. Shahrul called and we had dinner somewhere near UM. We parted ways after dinner and went to the apartment. Solat, shower, and off to bed. By that time it was already midnight. I hope I won't be lethargic on the D-day.

Kelolo suggested to meet up at an rv point and convoy together, as I don't know where exactly the place is. 0645 hours 10th. May, we met at Restoran Thaqwa in Sri Gombak. Kak Chik and Sufino were there too. It has been quite some time since we last met. Embraces exchanged (except with KC of course), and soon after we went off heading towards Batang Kali through Sri Gombak and Selayang.

When we arrived, there were many cars and riders all getting ready with their gears. The timing was quite good. Not too early, and not late either. I registered and took my rider number: 199. I really couldn't believe it that I'm finally there, ready to ride my first bash. Something that I have always wanted to do. Klmbh bike hash is in one of my riding wishlist. But this is not their usual bash. This is an epic. A long (torturous, maybe) offroad bash.

I have set up my riding objectives earlier. Quite simple, really:

  1. To ride with biking friends around KL
  2. To measure my riding ability

My usual offroad rides are 20 to 30 km. The bash's 6 checkpoints would need me to go 53 km in total. That's about twice my norm.

0800 hours and the bash hare Ying How delivered the briefing. I'm smiling inside, soaking the atmosphere. I don't know what's the turnout that morning, but I guess it's around 300.

Cyclemotion JB riders were there, too. I met Fadzlone, Neo, Sham Volvo, Sham Rudy, and a few others. Nice to see familiar faces in unfamiliar land. I looked around for faces I usually see online, and I saw a few.

Soon we were flagged off and there was I, among hundreds of riders. A few kilometers on road, and soon into the palm plantation. Somewhat familiar. Certain sections are like in Plentong. Cool... felt right at home.

I have to say that I was truly awed by the scenery as we were crossing the knee-deep river. I spent quite some time by the river bank looking at riders (and their bikes), and enjoying the atmosphere.

soaking in the atmosphere

We came up to Kg. Genting Malik. It's a very nice kampung atmosphere. You could feel the cool breeze around. I saw Mr & Mrs Kelolo over there and decided to stop for a rest. I for once thought that it's CP1, for I haven't notice that we ever passed it yet. Stopped there for quite a while. Then Shahrul reminded me that we have to be quick if we want to make to checkpoints within allocated time. Gosh, I don't know how long we loitered over there: topped up my bladder with 100 Plus, took a spin on BC's uber famous Pyre, had a lesson on brake pads, awed on the Santa Cruz Blur XC Carbon. Anyway, it was good time.

Shahrul and I sprinted to the next CP.

We came to CP 2 and didn't really stay for long. On On to the next - CP3. I met Neo resting under the tree at CP3.

I went on towards CP4 only after a few minutes resting. They say it's uphill most of the way, but shaded.

Bring it on! I love going uphill.

Yeah, right...

It was mentally torturing. For once, I thought the trail led us to Steroid Hill in FRIM. After a long climb uphill, greeted by yet another hill after every corner. I lost count on how many hilly sections there were. I have to say that mentally if you're out, there's little point in going further - it'll be more taxing. Many times I just dismounted and pushed the bike. It is actually much more tiring pushing the bike uphill compared to pedaling. Well, at certain sections it was just not possible for me to keep pedaling. It gets to you when you're on your lowest gear, and you simply can't keep up the cadence. Rather than pushing harder and suffer cramps, I climbed with both foot on the ground. Steps upon steps.

What's the reward after all the torturous climb? Downhill!

Too bad, the reward was too dear for me to take. Quite steep, and long downhill section. I decided to just pick up my bike and carry it down, behind Neo. Only at the second downhill section I enjoyed it fully. I thought to myself that it would be a shame not to take the reward. I went down without thinking, and man, how sweet it was! My right arm turned sore from the long braking. Suddenly I began to worry about my brake pads. Duh!!

Reached CP4 and saw the water station and boxes of bananas. It was already 1.30pm. I stopped for a few minutes to take in 2 bananas, some water and checked my rear brake pads. Still there. Good then.

Went on across the river on the bridge towards CP5. Alone. More uphill. A couple of guys I met at CP4 mentioned that it is more uphill towards CP4. I went ahead anyway. I wanted to see how I measure up to the challenge. After a few km along, I came to a junction where I was instructed to take the chicken loop. Apparently I exceeded the time limit.

  • "Okay, so how far is home?"
  • "About 20km."
  • "Huh??" Aiyaahh...
So I went 'home' alone. Surprisingly, after many kilometers and suffering, I could enjoy myself bombing downhill. I guess tackling the dh section after CP3 gave me a bit of confidence.
I reached the tarmac where EG's car is parked at about 2.30pm. There Kadafi and EG were already waiting. No signs of Shahrul. Logged out at the restaurant, and get ready for lunch.

Good thing that the bash is held more than 2 marhalahs. I took the travellers privilege, decided to jama' ta'khir my solat.

me with Dino

Shahrul - mission accomplished

Shahrul finally came out at about 4pm, finished all the CPs. He ordered this and that at the restaurant like shopping for food at bazar ramadhan. Exhausted and couldn't take in the food, his nasi goreng dada ayam with 2 helpings of cili potong boxed up to take home in the end.

As were we walking towards the car, a couple of guys I met at CP4 arrived, completed all the CPs. It was quite confusing for me. I left CP4 while they were resting. Along the trail up to the point where I was asked to take the CL, I know that they did not pass me. So I wonder how they were able to finish up the CPs. Never mind, I did about 47 km. And, if I were allowed to finish, it would be at about 4:30pm. Never could imagine the exhaustion.

Kadafi completed all the CPs in super fast time. EG and I completed only 4 CPs. Shahrul's mission to finish all the CPs accomplished. Collectively, we went back with high feeling. And exhausted.

All the dreaming and planning materialised.

Looking forward for my next klmbh bash. For now, I'm applying for the riding license for the bash in Kota Tinggi this Sunday.

Boleh la, sayang. Boleh eh...


My stats:
  • checkpoints completed: 4 (and a bit more)
  • ride time: 4:00:08
  • distance: 46.6 km
  • avg spd: 11.6 km/h
  • max spd: 36.6 km/h
During the bash, I made few more objectives:
  1. To test my bike's ability
  2. To test a certain riding apparel - more on this later
  3. To tackle terrains different from my usual ones. I'm happy to note that it increased my confidence, even not by a huge measure.
Friends I met with at the bash (by order of appearance):
  • Shahrul - with SC Blur
  • BC Kelolo and wife - with Cik Puteh and Sang Bara
  • Sufino - and his Power Bars
  • Anis - 'jauhnya kau datang'. Heheh...
  • Mr. Beskal - with his newly built Pyre
  • Red - met him before during my new year ride foraying into Dream Trail
  • Dino - though only after the ride is finished. Him enjoying mutton curry made me have some.
  • Shaque - al-power.
  • Friends from CM JB
  • Man DHer.
Any more names I missed out?

Oh, and made a new friend too, while browsing in KSH TTDI - En. Malik of Pejabat Daerah Kulai Jaya. Offroad in Seri Alam someday, perhaps?

Special thanks:

  • Kelolo and EG for the photos.
  • Zul, Zaki and Alif for the apartment.
  • Panjang for the bike carrier.
  • EG for driving us to and fro KL.

more photos here:

Wednesday 13 May 2009

Kota Tinggi Rainforest Hash

Presented by Cyclemotion Johor Bahru and Singapore Bike Hash (SBH).

When: Sunday 17th May 2009 8:30am
Where: Kota Tinggi Rainforest Resort (near Kota Tinggi Waterfall)

More info here:

Thursday 7 May 2009

RTW - 07.05.09

I went out at 0704 hours. Simply horribly LATE. Well, everyone went out a bit late this morning.

Stats today (to):
Distance: 13.79km (plus 1.5km than the usual)
Average speed: 21.9 km/h
Max speed: 40.7 km/h (the downhill besides Pusat Bandar Pasir Gudang)
Ride time: 37 mins 46 secs
Total ride time: about 46 minutes (longer route)
Number of doggies: 2 - good ones

A bit leisurely ride this morning, after 4 days off the saddle. Yesterday didn't RTW due to rain, and my beloved wife offered to give a lift to the office. Sayang awak!

I missed the usual cross junction at the Jalan Masjid traffic light, while steadily pedaling uphill. Went straight instead and took the next traffic light ahead, turning at Jalan Bandar towards the secondary school. Great.

Extra 1.5 km this morning, and plus 6 minutes. Just what I need. Extra km for preparation of this weekend's klmbh epic (yeah, right). Ah, and I enjoyed the downhill near Pusat Bandar Pasir Gudang - the traffic light over there was co-operative this morning.
Thank you.

View Trek TNB Pasir Gudang in a larger map

I drove through that road only last 2 days, but I didn't notice that the short mtb track opposite Restoran Sasa has been scraped to level. A classic case of 'you see more when riding a bicycle'. I didn't stop for the 1 minute standstill in honor of the marvellous track, though. Was a bit late this morning to work, remember?