TravellingStrom

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Batu Gajah Cache Day

Posted by TravellingStrom on March 24, 2013

I intended to do some Geocaching today, if you are not interested then skip today’s entry πŸ™‚ I had a series of caches I wanted to visit, but they were down here on the lowlands and that meant heat and humidity. So, I figured I would get away early and be back early afternoon hopefully before the thunder bumper starts and I could relax in the aircon!

The first cache I wanted to attempt looked like it would take some effort. The map showed it to be a trail up to a waterfall area. I don’t usually go and hike these but it is a First To Find, so it was worthwhile πŸ™‚ I decided to see what the track was like and see if the bike could get up it, so off I went towards the small town of Papan and the cache of Papan Cascades

Papan Cascades

The town of Papan, located south-west of Ipoh, was once a busy tin mining town in the Kinat valley. Now it is a scenic ghost town, famous for the memorial to Sybil Kathigasu, of WWII fame. When you follow the main street out of the town, you will find a sign for Hutan Lipur Papan. The road runs along a small river.

The difference between a cascade and a fall is not always so easy. Here it would be fair to say that there are several nice cascades. Only local people know about the place. Very suitable for a weekend picnic.

Cache is a cylindrical screw-capped transparent plastic bottle wrapped in black polyethylene bag for protection against the elements. Initial content of cache: a green energy nugget (inedible) and a log scroll. Please bring your pen to log your visit. The cache is located at 104 meters a.s.l., on a slope, at the base of a tree, under a rock.

As you can see I managed to ride right in there and I was actually parked right next to ground zero. But, there was no tree 😦 I read the previous logs again, there was only one attempt at this cache since it was published back May 2009. The previous people came for a look in October of that year and could not find it. They were confused by the co-ords being nowhere near a tree also and there was a new gabion wall right on top of GZ. I spent a fair bit of time here looking around all the trees on both sides of the creek, there was a photo posted on the site of the tree it was behind, but I could not see it, this first one here is where the cache is supposed to be hidden(from Geocaching.com), the rest are my ramblings around the area 😦

The problem I had at the time was not having access to that photo out in the field. But, I could not find it and decided to carry on look for another. The next in the series I had planned was up the mountain approach road towards the Cameron Highlands. It was another waterfall and was near the town of Ipoh. On this following map, I started at Amzah’s place, went north west to these cascades then east to Sinju Waterfall

Sinju Waterfall

The new road from Simpang Pulai to the Cameron Highlands follows more or less the valley of the Raja river. Just before it crosses this river for the first time, about 15 km from Simpang Pulai, there is a small trail to the right. Here you can park your car. The trail is clear, but a bit muddy, you can also follow the river bank. After a few hundred meters, you will see a small waterfall to your right.

From where the tributary joins the Raja river, it is only a short walk up to the main waterfall. It is not a powerful one, and there is no pool, just several ‘bathtubs’. But the fall is unspoilt and attractive. You are so close to the main road, that you can see cars passing through the foliage.

Cache is a cylindrical screw-capped transparent plastic bottle wrapped in black polyethylene bag for protection against the elements. Initial content of cache: a green energy nugget (inedible) and a log scroll. Please bring your pen to log your visit. The cache is located at 375 meters a.s.l. near the river, at the base of a tree, under a rock.

I did not take any photos of this area because I could not get in. I parked up near it along the track that is mentioned but there was a gate blocking access to the track and it looked very overgrown on the other side. The gate was only a bamboo one and I could have climbed it, but maybe there was a reason for it being blocked off, maybe it was dangerous in some way, so I decided against this one and in fact posted a note on the cache site requesting it be disabled until it can be accessed. So that was a long way out of my way for nothing and now I had a long way to go for the next one, this was on the other side of Amzah’s flat, so I took the opportunity to drop in for some smoko and a short break from the heat, which is why my map track looks like a figure 8 πŸ™‚ The next cache was called River Terrapin Wildlife Conservation Centre

River Terrapin (Batagur baska)

A breeding farm for ‘Tuntung’ (river terrapins or Bataqur baska) is located at Bota Kanan, about 40km from lpoh. Opened in 1967 by the State’s Dept of Wildlife and National Parks, the primary aim of this project is the conservation of this species. To date the hatchery at Bota Kanan has released more than 25,000 hatchings into the Perak River. Between November and March, visitors can witness migrating river terrapins laying eggs in the wild.
Cache is a small cylindrical screwed-cap transparent plastic bottle wrapped in a black polyethylene bag for protection against the elements. Initial content of cache: a blue energy nugget (inedible) and a log scroll. Please bring your pen to log your visit. It is hidden outside the centre at N04Β° 20.905’ E100Β° 52.798’, at the base of a thorny plant

I headed there and once again found myself very close to GZ, I parked up in the shade and looked around for a thorny plant.

Yep, that is it in front centre, it has been hacked by the groundsman I guess. I was a bit doubtful of finding anything, and I found out them thorns are very sharp. I ended up using my boot to move the dead wood off the stump, and came up trumps, the cache was still there although a bit tattered. In fact it needs replacing as the container was cracked and water had destroyed the log 😦

The next and last cache on my list for the day was another 30km away, and along the way, as I crossed a bridge(but only when I came to it) I found it was decorated in blue flags. The design on them was a white set of balanced scales. I found out from Amzah that this is the colour scheme of the incumbent political party who have been in power for 60 years, the other parties cannot get a look in. Joh would have loved this place πŸ˜‰

I arrived at the next cache called Pasir Salak Historical Complex

Situated 70 km from Ipoh, Pasir Salak is of special importance in the historical development of Malaysia as an independent nation. It was here that the original flames of Malay nationalism were sparked. The assassination of the then British Resident of Perak, J.W.W. Birch, ignited a war between the British colonial administration and the Malays.

The Historical Complex pays tribute to warriors such as Dato’ Maharaja Lela, Dato’ Sagor and Si Puntum by erecting special memorials in their honour. Other interesting sights include Mr. Birch’s memorial monument, the burial site of Si Puntum, Dato’ Maharaja Lela’s fortress, the Lela Tentaka cannons used against the British army, a souvenir shop, as well as an information centre.

The only problem was the cache was INSIDE that building inside of a small pottery jar and I could not get in. This is annoying when that happens. I personally think caches should not be in places where you have to buy any type of entrance fee nor where they cannot be accessed 24/7, but that is just me πŸ˜‰ So I was told by the security guards sitting under the building to go away or something ❓ But I had a quick decko of the place before heading off. As an aside I recommended this cache be ‘archived’ as it is cannot be accessed. The cache owner has a chance to relocate it to a more accessible position, so hopefully they do that πŸ™‚

On the way back to the flat I spotted a KFC and decided to see what they do with it here. Well, it gets the thumbs up, non greasy and very tasty, our Rocky shops could learn a thing or two from this one πŸ˜‰

The rest of the day was spent relaxing and online in the aircon πŸ™‚ I planned some more caches for tomorrow and also started to plan for the return home, just some pre-study to see what I needed to do and when.

Cheers from Batu Gajah
TravellingStrom

4 Responses to “Batu Gajah Cache Day”

  1. Bob said

    I think it’s great they put up a large WARNING SIGN in English but don’t bother to let you know what you’re being warned about.

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