Thursday, October 7, 2010

Belum (Or Sudah?): Day 3: Kelah Pond and Home

Day 3, Belum. The last day's attraction was perhaps the best out of all we have visited so far. The previous day's excursion (the trek to nowhere) was a disappointment (especially when I don't get to swing around my ferocious parang at stray branches, vines (and maybe a leech or two) ;)) and I wasn't really having high hopes that today's destination would be getting any better. Fortunately I was wrong, because we were brought to this very nice waterfall whose flowing waters filled a pond swarming with Kelah fish! ;) This was after we have packed up our stuff and left Sungai Papan campsite one last time. From there, it took another 45 minute boat ride to reach the landing point with a large signboard proclaiming the place as 'Lata Kelah' and a 15 minute hike to arrive at the pond.
The landing point outside the Kelah filled lake...

Fishing is allowed in the park for a fee (no fish bombing or trawling allowed though), but it is definately not allowed in this Kelah Sanctuary. We took to the water, swimming in it's cool waters.
Fish spa anyone? ;) Swimming with the fishies...

The guide insisted that we wear our life jackets while we swam, although later on, one of us decided to roll the dice and swim without it (guess who?) ;). With nothing else to do, we spend almost an hour here, taking photos and generally having fun.
video
Frolicking around the Kelah Pond...

A few of us swam to the bottom of the falls at the far end of the pond, although midway the water could get a little deep. At lenght I got back onshore, only to discover that my shoes had become a haven to some insects, including a very large spider! :p Shooing them away, I got my foot wear back on, joining the rest of the group heading back to our boat.
Racing home! :)

We returned to the army checkpoint to de-register ourselves. The sight of guns pointing at us no longer inspired much dread, especially after we passed a number of boats packed with soldiers heading into the reserve for which we waved and were waved back ;). We reached the jetty at close to noon, the sun beating the top of our boat's canopy, our stomachs grumbling for good and proper food! :D
Land Ho! The end of our Belum adventure?

Bidding our guides goodbye, we moved on to Grik town, stopping at the Belum resort on Pulau Banding to take a look see on more luxurious accomodations. ;) Tarrying there for not more than our hungry stomachs can allow, we moved on, finding ourselves in a Chinese restaurant along the road having our typical post trip lunch! :D
Well not before our customary post trip meal! :D

An order of fish, some meats and vegetables satisfied our hunger and soon we were joining the multitude of post holiday makers crowding the North South highway, all with one destination in mind... HOME! :D The verdict for this entire excursion?

Overall, the trip was a little bit 'too easy' for me. Touted as a 'pristine virgin jungle', it was perhaps a little too 'civilized' for my liking. Maybe another round of hard hiking and camping ala Kenong Rimba or Teluk Batik might soothe the adventurer in me... but then, that's for another time. ;)

Till the next adventure, over and out! ;)

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