akmal's bike park

akmal's bike park

Tuesday 28 April 2015

19.04.2015: Impromptu Touring to Hutan Lipur Lenggeng with Yad

the entrance to Hutan Lipur Lenggeng, Negeri Sembilan
Perhaps the best plans are those unplanned. Or somewhat impromptu.

I was at the wet market in Ampangan when Yad asked me whether I was cycling; and he told me that nowadays he spends the weekend Senawang at his mom's house in Senawang. That promptly made me triggered an idea to him, whether he fancied an on road spin around Seremban. Equally promptly, he agreed and would be at my house in half an hour. Just nice for me, as I was about to get home from Pasar Ampangan.

I had been longing for a  bike ride, on road preferably, much in a preparation for something big (for me at least!) in May insyaAllah. Befittingly, the morning's ride would be nice, plus a chance to catch up on current affairs with Yad.

At about 9.30am, Yad's already at my place while I was having breakfast. A few moments after, we were busy preparing our bikes and at about 10.00 am we were on our way cycling around Seremban.

First stop was at Yad's former school at Ampangan, just a stone's throw from my house. After a mandatory photo snap, we went on towards Ampangan proper and turned into Jalan Jelebu.

Yad at Jalan Jelebu, just before the idea of the detour
Perhaps triggered by the roadside signage, Yad threw an impromptu idea: "how about going to Jeram Toi?". I checked the map on my phone, and I thought why not. However, I saw a notice 'permanently closed' on the map, so we immediately scrapped it without further checking whatsoever. At the same time, I saw Hutan Lipur Lenggeng on the map, which is not far from where we were, and it seems doable as the distance is much shorter than it would take to Jeram Toi. So, a change of plan and we headed out to our mini adventure.

Right from the start, I pointed out that the ride shall be a leisurely ride, with max speed of 20 km/h on flat road. Well, it is quite tough to stick to 20, actually; most of the time on flats we cruised at 23-25 km/h. The route is actually a constant uphill but on a manageable gradient, except for a comparatively steep hill just a kilometer from our intended destination.

The weather was good, sunny all the way and understandably hot as we headed out quite late. It started to drizzle a bit when we reached Pantai. However, it died down and back to sunny clear sky not long afterwards.

some horses by the roadside
We managed to keep our speed at a comfortable 20+km/h all the way, bar the steep hill section of course. That resulted in about 18 km/h average speed throughout the journey. Not taxing to the heart, lungs and legs. Comfortable leisurely ride. The traffic of a Sunday morning along the route also was accommodating. Not too many cars, or any big vehicles. Only for a couple of different times there were herds of superbikes zooming past us and at one point a solo cyclist on a road bike overtook us uphill.

a mansion at Pantai
I may have been through this route by car some time before, but it was not as distinct and memorable as this trip. The benefit of going slow is that one's senses could absorb the surroundings (yes, smoke and dirt as well). We stopped quite a few times for photos, and admiring the nicely built traditional Minangkabau kampung houses.

beautiful traditional Minangkabau house
at Pantai town
nearing the turn towards Lenggeng
waiting for Yad at the highest point of the journey
The road condition was good, and rather exceptionally good after the small Pantai town all the way heading towards our destination. It was recently paved with new white paints for the divider and shoulders.

smooth paved road
We reached Hutan Lipur Lenggeng at about noon. Nothing spectacular to write about the place, actually. There's a dedicated camping site, a viewing tower, ample parking lot and also the waterfall. The waterfall should be the highlight of the place, but it is not as grand as one might think. Anyway, for ones who have cycled under the sun for some kilometers and climbed a 190 m hill, soaking in the stream on the rocks is a little bit of a great reward.

We didn't do much at the place except cooling ourselves down and taking photos. Did some catching up upon matters and news revolving our lives. Such getaway on a weekend from busy KL is a nice thing to have once in a while. I won't complaint if we could do it often (our wives at home would, I bet).

happy cyclists
After close to an hour, we headed back to Seremban the same route that we came in. The uphill shortly after Hutan Lipur Lenggeng was with a forgiving gradient. Its reward is a generous gravitational pull which resulted in 67 km/h max speed on my odometer. There were no other vehicles sharing the road with me when I'm downhilling, so it was a maximum joy all to myself.

one for the road
The journey back to Seremban seems short and direct; we didn't stop anywhere else except at a roadside stall called Ibu Cendol. We ordered ABCs for both of us and enjoyed every spoon of it.

route map (see data on the top)
Alhamdulillah, we reached my house at about 2.00 pm without any mishaps to us nor the bikes. I really enjoyed the ride, and the company. I reckon it would not be as nice to ride solo. So thank you, Yad. And ever more so for the impromptu detour. There shall be more tours (our detours) such as this, hopefully insyaAllah.

Photo album (on fb): http://bit.ly/HLL190415

Route map:
1. Seremban to Hutan Lipur Lenggeng: http://bit.ly/home-HLL (lots of photos therein)
2. Hutan Lipur Lenggeng back to home: http://bit.ly/HLL-home

Kona Nunu
I was riding 3x9 speed Kona Nunu with Surly CrMo Troll rigid fork (for 26" MTB) and a pair of new Schwalbe Marathon Plus tires, with Ibera PakRak rear pannier rack and rack bag. I love the smooth rolling of the SMP and Troll fork. It is somewhat with a comfortable cushion yet firm on the tarmac.
Also on the handlebar are a pair of generic ergonomic leather grips bought from Pak Ngah of Sungai Pelek. Quite comfortable and with supple smooth cushion. I enjoyed it better with bare hands rather than with gloves on.