Kota Kinabalu

Walking around Kota Kinabalu, post-hike.    local boats to the islands.     filipino market.   boats at sea

Mt Kinabalu – Hike Back Down to Laban Rata

It was beautiful seeing what we had just hiked up in the morning light.  Though the rock was slippery… and the descent was slow. looking back to the peak – notice the size of people for prespective   karen falling   chris’s descent into the clouds   rock faces   pools – it was slippery

The Summit @ Low’s Peak

We had perfect weather at the summit.  It was cold, but not freezing.  And the skies were mostly clear, with just enough clouds to give perspective & help color the red morning sky. There were probably about 100 people up at the top… of all ages & ethnicities.  The oldest person to climb the mountain to date was 81 years old.   karen at summit   sunrise (kodak moment killer: that’s an umbrella on his back and he’s sending a text message.)   looking down   chris, karen, & guide   treats at the top

Mt Kinabalu – Laban Rata Lodge

The lodge was warm & heated… and had lots of food.  The kitchen was stocked with water, chocolate, and other supplies (INCLUDING postcards & stamps – I sent one to my parents)  . All the supplies for the lodge are carried up by porters.  As we were hiking up, we saw locals carrying HUGE loads strapped to their back and hanging from their heads…. as they passed us. Up to this point, the sky has been foggy & drizzly.  Just before sunset, the skies cleared for the first time. on the balcony   sunset – on level with the clouds   …

Hike to Laban Rata

Chris & I left the trailhead around 10am with our guide Julius.  (I know that’s probably not how he spells it… but that’s the best that I could pronounce.)  The trail was steep & I started really feeling the altitude about 2 or 3 hours in.  Chris (who had just climbed Mt Rainer) taught me a couple helpful tricks, including power breathing (taking a full, short breath out every few breaths). We arrived at Laban Rata around 4pm. start of trail – looking fresh   scenary   sillhoutte   action shot   start to see peaks

Mt Kinabalu – The Mountain

My friend Chris & I decided to climb Mt. Kinabalu.  The summit is 4095 m (13,450 ft), the tallest between the Himalayas & New Guinea.  For some perspective, Mt Rainer is just taller 4392 m (14,410 ft) – although, since you’re trucking through snow, Rainer is a tougher climb. The climb up Mt Kinabalu starts at about 1866 m (6,122 ft).  The first day, you hike up to Laban Rata at 3272 m (10,734 ft), where there is a lodge to spend the night.  The next morning (around 3am) you start the final 823 m (2,700 ft) climb for sunrise at the summit.  After hiking back …

Elephant Sanctuary

Based on a recommendation, my friend Chris & I headed out to the Kuala Gandah, an elephant sanctuary about 2 hours outside of Kuala Lumpur.  We had the most excellent Mr Razali as our guide. The elephants at the sanctuary were found injured and/or trapped.  The sanctuary also runs an elephant rescue & relocation program.  Much of the elephants’ natural habitat in Malaysia is now plantation crop & many elephants are trapped in “islands” of forest that are too small to sustain them.  The sanctuary tries to mitigate this by relocating them to the national forest for protection. The highlight our trip was the baby elephants – Siput (female, 10 months) …

Petronas Towers

The Petronas Twin Towers were beautiful at night.  It’s no wondering they’re a symbol of Malaysia.

Asia Travels

On Thursday, I leave for Malaysia & China for a trip with equal parts business and pleasure.  Very excited! I’m bringing along both my film SLR & my digital point and shoot.  So they’ll be some real time photo and a bunch of back-postings when I return.   Malaysia time: gmt/utc +8 (noon in seattle = 3am next day in kuala lumpur) currency: 1 usd = 3.68 ringgit (rm) weather: 80F, showers (forecast)   China time: gmt/utc +8 (noon in seattle = 3am next day in beijing) currency: 1 usd = 7.97 yuan weather: 80F, rain (forecast)