Monday, June 30, 2008

Kayuhan Jatidiri (Meal Version)

Since our roadtrip to Kuala Kangsar and back was 60% mountainbiking and the remaining 40% more like an Asian Food Channel coverage, I've decided to dedicate this post for the food or meal review.

With compliments to our food guide Azahari, we managed to secure a variety of popular Perak delicacies. The following food trails prevails:

As we abandoned Tapah R&R for it's crowd on our way to Kuala Kangsar, we held on for another hour to ingest Mee Rebus Ramli in Ipoh. A bit different from it's counterpart like mee rebus in Johor Bahru, the restaurant attracts locals and travellers to Ipoh with this specialty. The place is strategically located out of Ipoh town away from busy traffic, along the main federal road towards Sg Siput. It also serves a few other dishes like lamb chop, chicken chop, etc.

Our tea time was served with a famous local laksa Pak Ngah in Kuala Kangsar. Popularly known located behind a chinese school. A bit different from the famous Penang rivals, it surely serves the locals eternally. Laksa Tanjung Bungah and the more defined taste of laksa Teluk Kumbar dole out a better ding for me though.

Upon registration and freshen up, we headed north to Taiping for our dinner. It's a revisit for me. We had to abandon...again, the famous kuew teow Doli due to it's crowd...again. The long faces of the waiting customers was not a recommended atmosphere after travelling 30km with ravening appetite. We headed straight for the jack pot. Yong tau fu sotong & kang kung behind Taiping Bomba. Crowd was under control. Two servings with hot lai cee kang was enough to make anyone propped against the chair. The ingredients with generous sotong guaranteed a come back.

We saved the best for last. Reloading carbos, calories and spice was our last "eatenary". The starving tummies waited patiently for the widely told "nasi wongeh" or "nasi ganja" in Ipoh town. It is actually a nasi kandar with kuah campur, fried chicken or mutton curry. The taste and feeling was undefinable. Every head across the round chinatown tables bowed in full faith towards the plate of white rice and spices. I can still recalled the site of it and the mouth watering taste at the edge of my mouth as I write this up. Another blessing for a come back.

Kayuhan Jatidiri (ride version)

Alhamdullillah everything turned out awesomely & handsomely as planned. Our first roadtrip for 2008 mountainbiking style. 10 of us signed up for the Kayuhan Jatidiri Mtb Jamboree in Kuala Kangsar. First time held with the support from the state government and local authorities. It was supposed to be a cross country outing and relinquish oneselves to the peaceful atmosphere of Kuala Kangsar town and contryside.

Seven of us gathered up at my place for bikes & kits transfer. Two cars with seven bikes rolled off at 11.30am after having a glitch with Saiful's rack. Traffic towards Duta Toll Plaza was nonviolent. We rendevous with Azahari and the Selama boys at Sg. Buloh R&R.

Maintaining moderate highway speed to save fuel consumption with 4 bikes on the roof, we managed to reach Ipoh for lunch about 2 hours later. We opted for the old trunk road from Ipoh to Kuala Kangsar via Sg Siput "highway" and managed to reach Kuala Kangsar Rest House an hour later, just in time to check in and registration at the Jaitidir booth.

The ride next morning was flagged off sharp at 7.00am at the main road by the town bridge where about a thousand moutainbikers crowded the streets. The idea of screening of cyclists via the 10km road stretch was cool. By the time we reached the trailhead, all of us were basically stretched out according to ones pace. The initial climb on the trail was a bit choked up by some inconsiderate kiasus but all went great for the next 20km.

The remaining 20km cross country trail was 80% singtracks and 20% firetracks. Some long steep grannies and some short bursts required in ones legs. Most of it were rideable. Things turned truely overwhelming when it was time to roll down the hills. Snaking trails under shaded rubber trees was magnificent. Fast bumpy long descents on palm oil estate tracks were jaw gripping and something one had to focus on. My Reba was floating away on the trail magnificently. We regrouped at every checkpoint or whenever necessary.

The excitement were cut short when the trail ended abruptly while we were on the verge of hunger for more adrenaline. It was time to loosen up the muscles pedalling back to town through the scenic Kg Talang where Man Laksa movie took place. I couldn't agree more, the view was breathtaking. Again the journey back allow us to share the ride stuff on our bikes. We finished our remaining 10km back at Laman Budaya about 11.30am. Just in time to catch our check out time from the lodging and drive home.

Fellow mountainbikers: Alwin, Saifullizan, Azahari, Mohd Padzli, Nizam Maybank, Nizam TNB, Mutalib, Akmal, Sidek, Aku .

Wednesday, June 25, 2008

Attempting Genting

Attempting Genting is one of the toughest challenge for a fellow cyclist, especially the ones with constant laziness & me for the last 3 months. However, with the recent Fraser & Sepang milage on mtb, I put high hopes that my mtb will bring me up there in the clouds of Genting.

The rolling from HOA was delayed by 15 minutes due to some selfish scumbag. The climb up to Genting Sempah was nothing more than normal, same as riding my roadbike...60 minutes. Sky was a bit gloomy & foggy as it appeared between the canopied winding old Gombak road. We regroup at the top under the bridge, the normal spot for any ride be it to Genting Sempah, Janda Baik or Bentong.

A handful other decided wisely to turn back down to HOA, not pursuing their dreams in the sky city. Nine were determined to torment oneself gauging the limit of the sky. Six on roadbikes, 3 on mtbs.

The first 3km climb from the police post was something to be cursed about. It was tremendously steep with no discount. Motorized vehicles were jamming the throttle hard as they passed us exhausting behind choking fumes. We regrouped at a roundabout since that was the only flat spot around. The remaining climbs were a bit flexible continued with a long fast descent towards Gohtong.

We had our late breakfast at a mamak joking around about this crazy attempt. After half an hour, five continued on pursuing their determination, while four called it a day. Considering another week to the 40km Kuala Kangsar epic, this Gohtong attempt is enough. The rolling down the 3km last stretch reached 70kph with blazing adrenalines.

Tuesday, June 17, 2008

Ok, maybe I'm going to go back down the comic era lane again...say 10 years back when I was a Marvel & DC superhero fanatic, especially after spending the last 2 hours confronting big green guy on the big screen. Yep, the superheroes are hitting the big screen again this time of the year.

It started with the egocentric, self-centred Mr. Tony Stark, which is also known as the Ironman. One of my favorite. A month ago, Ironman flew across the big screen. I was fascinated the way it was presented, same as how they made Spidey in his first 2 episodes. However, the third sequel was a bit of a flop.
Today, I trusted my instinct to watch the Incredible Hulk, played by Edward Norton. Another of my favorite actor after his awesome Fight Club act. The Incredible Hulk had a pleasant storyline, nothing much derailed from it's original comic book sequences. The ending was so unpredictable, when out of nowhere Mr Tony Stark appeared, approaching General Fury. He was mentioning that a team is being setting up. Well, guess no more... The Avengers are coming! Btw, who's gonna be Captain America eh?!

Sunday, June 15, 2008

Putrajaya to Sepang

After last week's roadhaul session by mtb up Fraser's, today I decided to join up the mtb on tarmac gala with some new friends. Aku tumpang kayuh je. 16 of us gathered at the Putra Mosque at 7am, ready for our epic journey on mtbs towards Lukut or 50km, which ever comes first. To add to the special occassion, all 16 cyclists rode with 16 Giant bikes. Anthems, Boulders, Rincon & one and only trusted XTC.

It was an awesome work out, without casualties except for a bit of drizzles at Salak Tinggi on our back. New friends were awesome, easy going lads with high spirits.

  • Route : Putra Mosque to Sepang town & back
  • Distance : 98km
  • Average spd : 23.5kph

Sunday, June 8, 2008

Aiya...minyak naik...naik minyak

OK la, eventually I had to post it here though the issue is not a nice one to share but it is a historical day for all Malaysians. Just so that one day all of us especially BTHO would know it in the future.

Last Wednesday, June 4th Malaysian Government declared the new petrol and diesel price. Petrol price increased from RM1.92/litre to a devastating RM2.70/litre!!! A 41% increment! Simpler calculation for my Proton Wira tank capacity, normally I would fuel up RM70 full tank, now it can reach RM100. Terasa macam guna kereta 2000 c.c. pulak.

The event shocked & upset the nation worldwide. It's going to be a domino effect. The price of all consumer goods will increase. Not just the low income people but the middle & high income ones will definitely had to review their expenses just to earn a living.

Sooner or later in a week time or so, BTHO will feel the effect. Van Azizah will soon increase the school bus fair. Umar's milk price & drypers will increase. That would goes the same with the rest of the household items such as vegetables, cooking oil, fish, rice, cooking gas long as it involves petrol or diesel to transport it.

This unfair decision to the majority of us had to be looked into. The decision makers definitely does not felt the implication. They run on government's vehicles & the PEOPLE paid for the fuel. They receive allowances for doing their job on top of their salaries.

The cost of living for Malaysians have to be balanced up. The increase of fuel price & other stuff will only choked ones earning. Country's development will not balance. If the Government's reason for the omission of fuel subsidy is to generate country's development in a long run, PEOPLEs' development will be compromised, in a short term. School kids will have a hard time getting expensive healthy foods. Some may even opt to cycle to school instead of paying higher school van fee. With the blindness from the Government & local authorities, road safety for the kids to school will be compromised. Pray to God those bad things won't take place. Amin.

Saturday, June 7, 2008

Fraser revisit...mtb

A week ride plan for a revisit up Fraser Hill...selit with Mac's group. Only this time a few of us attempted with mountainbikes while the rest with roadies. There were 15 of us, 4 with mtbs...Alwin, Saiful, Bacin & me. The climb was getting boring & mentally disturbed upon reaching the 2 hours mark. We were supposed to reach Gap before 11.00am for the climb to Fraser since the new route was closed from landslides.

The 8km climb to Fraser was another leg aching attempt & the 11.45am time alarmed the starving guts. We reached the food stall for a big lunch of nasi campur & started rushing back down since the window for descending closed at 12.40pm.

The heart stomping descent was marvelous for us fellow with mountainbikes while we shouted away in joy taking the corners.

It was a 80km up & down. Legs not enough milage but weather was great except for headwind while we cycled at the dam.

Wednesday, June 4, 2008

Shocking moment

After getting steamed up with mtb rides, eventually I hyped myself by replacing my trustworthy RS Pilot with a used RS Reba SL. The thought of upgrading the suspension came across since the JSKL race. The feeling of having to thump the endless roots with the Pilot was not a nice one. The sight of watching other participants Fox forks floating pass the roots was amazing & made me drooled. That was when the hunt for a budgeted upgrade homework started...actually, most of my bike stuff are the budgeted type.

Eventually the moment of truth cast upon when a guy was selling a used RS Reba SL. From a few opinions, I guessed & believed that it is a worth attempt. Through trust (among fellow cyclists), the transaction took place between KL & Penang. 3 days later it was courriered to my home. The same day I got it fixed to the bike. Now, unstoppingly, I am admiring every single view of the bike's new look.