Thursday, March 20, 2008

1st Tahan Expedition, part 20....OBJECTIVE ACHIEVED!

Photos: a) Another angle of the Batu Tahan or Tahan Quartz.
b) The 4 from TTC ....Tng, Dick, Ahmad our Guide, Balbir and Twang posing
at the summit.

We had taken all the pictures we wanted at the summit. The rolling mists of clouds moved over the plateau casting surreal sillhouttes in the shadows of the gentle mountain slopes. Weather at the top can change very fast in an instant from scorchingly hot, to cool and cloudy, then to misty rain. It was fortunate that our final ascent came with perfect weather....a beautiful, clear blue sky. That day, the 5th day of our actual climb, was going to be a very long day. From the summit we headed down the same way we came, taking less than an hour to reach our campsite at Padang. We topped up our water, broke camp and carefully cleared the site of debris [ A golden rule of camping is always to leave the campsite a better place than before you arrived ] .

Taking a final look at our campsite and at the Tahan peak, we turned southwards back towards the trail leading to Gedong. As we moved off silently, personally I did wonder whether I would ever come this way again in my lifetime. [ I do not know about the others whether any of them ever stepped onto Tahan again, after 1969.....unlikely would be just my guess. As for myself...I led a Hwa Chong JC group of students in an expedition to this same place and "re-conquered " G Tahan in June 1985!! That was a gap of 16 years ! Perhaps I may cover that climb in just a post or two, to point out any differences or changes since then ].

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