Dropped in Malaysia
By Martha Gill and Bex Baraona
With nothing but flights booked, what could possibly go wrong? The Gowaan Gals adventure trip took a strange turn before it even got going…
The aim of the trip was to travel with our bikes to a location relatively unknown within the mountain bike industry. After some research and eyeing up a world map, we eventually decided Mongolia would make an amazing adventure little did we know we would end up in Malaysia…
With short travel 29er bikes, camping stuff and winter woollies packed, we were ready for the cold Mongolian nights under the stars. We arrived at the airport only to be denied entry at check in. Turns out you not only need a visa, but an invitation to enter Mongolia… both of which we were lacking.
The lonely planet Mongolia guide didn’t come in too handy.
We arrived to frequent thunderstorms and the dense humidity of Kuala Lumpur– not quite the backdrop we were expecting with our bags full of (now useless) camping equipment.
Short travel 29ers were the bikes of choice. Bex’s packed an Ibis Ripley LS, Martha’s a Rift Zone 3. We quickly left the city and headed for the cooler heights of the Cameron Highlands. We were lead to believe there were some cycling routes through the jungle, as well as various agricultural tourist attractions.
The start of a walking trail towards a waterfall in the jungle… looks safe and legit, right? – Yeah we thought so too.
Bex getting straight on the jungle jibs.
Judging by their reactions, the locals clearly hadn’t seen many riders around here before, but this man was loving it!
Although most people walk this route, a few cool natural features made for a fun start to the trail.
Deep in to the jungle, the path was to become much less defined from here on.
Is it even an adventure without a hike-a-bike?
A trail guide wouldn’t have gone amiss, but with no locals to be seen, we rode on past.
Becoming delirious. I’m NOT a celebrity but get me out of here!
After receiving several messages from family and Malaysian riders about the dangers of the jungle, we were left slightly scarred from our experience. Somehow we managed to spend 6 hours alone without bumping into any of the poisonous snakes, spiders, leopards, and lions. The next few days we took it a bit easier and checked out a tea plantation and strawberry farm.
The vast amount of tea plantations and the rolling hills made for a beautiful landscape.
You won’t find any man-made trails in this part of Malaysia, but there were plenty of natural features to play on.
We were told a visit to a strawberry farm whilst in the Cameron Highlands is a must. We spent a fun couple of hours picking and eating, but mainly eating.
It wasn’t just us wanting the bike-ferry shot.
When we arrived on the island we heard of a remote beach, only accessible by foot or boat. Of course, we made it there by bike! Another jungle path adventure, however this time, much more defined with some fun challenging trials features along the way.
Doing our best Danny MacAskill impression.
It was apparent the Redang Island monkeys hadn’t seen bikers in their patch before. Whilst filming a section of trail, a pack of them got a little bit too close for comfort- that’s when we saw they actually have pretty big fangs! Two weeks was not long enough for a trip like this, so before we knew it, it was time to head back to Kuala Lumpur and check out the culture, food and riding scene.
We saw too many rats at this night food market.
Amazing sighting of a monitor lizard as we unloaded the bikes in the car park of Bukit Kiara Trails. It definitely left us wondering what was in the jungle if this beast was in the car park!
Putrajaya bike park was filled with plenty of kickers and opportunities for some shapes!
It was a treat to ride some MTB specific trails after all the jungle bush whacking. It made riding feel so easy and effortless.
More fun jumps and shapes from Martha.
We were lucky enough to have local pinner, Denny show us the best trails around Kuala Lumpur. Here he is boosting it!
Bex getting her whip on. Sandbags for jumps, because when it rains it really rains and the trails literally get washed away!
The riding in Kuala Lumpur was SO humid, we had fully embraced
the constant sweating by the end of the trip though.
Massive thanks to Get Sneaky Event Services who made it possible for us to make this trip… even if it wasn’t Mongolia. It was an amazing experience and in our partnership with Get Sneaky Event Services, we look forward to bringing you the Gowaan Gals MTB Festival in September 2018.
Make sure to check out the full video recaps from Malaysia on our Gowaan Gals Youtube channel. To keep up to date with our many more adventures, follow us on Instagram @gowaan_gals.