Mt. Yong Yap Expedition 2015

by Alicia Chan

illustration trail

After weeks of relentless training in the hills around Kuala Lumpur and Gunung Nuang, 26 Rangers and leaders from Outpost KL#1 embarked on an expedition to Mount Yong Yap, Peninsula Malaysia’s 6th highest mountain standing at 7,110 feet. The expedition lasted from 16th to 18th of July 2015, during the Hari Raya holidays.

All smiles before leaving civilisation
All smiles before leaving civilisation

Gathering at the wee hour of 4:00 a.m., we started our journey towards the assembly point at Kampung Raja, Cameron Highlands only to be deterred by the heavy traffic on the highways. However, the traffic and our lack of sleep did not dampen our anticipation for the hike. Upon reaching the assembly point, we savoured our last meal in human civilisation before heading into the forests.

The adventure officially started with the 4×4 ride to Pos Renggil, an orang asli village. It felt as if we were in Jurassic Park, without the dinosaurs. The strong wind in our faces and bumpy ride made the journey uneasy but nevertheless it was filled with laughter and giggles.

Rivers and more rivers to cross
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At 1:00 p.m., we began to hike towards Kem Agas, the place we would call home for two nights. The hike up involved pushing through heavily overgrown ferns, bending over multiple deadfalls, avoiding thorns that could damage our attires and bags, and crossing multiple rivers. Following 6 hours of uphill trekking, we finally arrived at Kem Agas and settled for the night to prepare for the 2nd day: the conquest to the summit.

“A 10-hour hike awaits us”, our guide informed us on the second day. From 7.30 a.m. onwards, we braved ourselves through more river crossings and uphill climbs. The never-ending climb up was excruciating to bear, but we knew we could not afford to give up at that point of time. As we attained to higher elevation, we were rewarded with cool breeze and the sight of mossy forest. Yet, the last stretch to the peak was narrow and obstructed with boulders and fallen trees. The route was not straightforward; one had to survey the track to determine the best way to climb up.

Rangers & Rain at the summit
Rangers & Rain at the summit

With unwavering determination, we pushed on and finally reached the top of Mount Yong Yap! We took some time to appreciate our achievement and God’s creation. Not long after we summited, it started to rain heavily. The raindrops felt as heavy as marbles dropping unto our cheeks and the rain forced us to take shelter among the bushes. It was cold as we headed down the mud-filled and slippery trail. Our success of conquering the peak has given us the strength to keep calm and carry on. We returned to Kem Agas safely at 6:00 p.m. to rest for the day.

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At 6:00 a.m. on the third day, we were ready to head back to civilisation. It took us 6 hours to arrive back at Pos Renggil and we celebrated our feat by bathing in the cool, refreshing river. God has displayed his awesomeness through nature and His protection upon us throughout this whole expedition. The sandfly bites may itch for a week, but the memories of Mount Yong Yap will stay with us for a lifetime.

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1st Things First!

RR KL#1 Derby 2015 trophy

There is a special ring to any event that has the word ‘first’ added to it. Such was the case for the KL#1 Father & Ranger Derby… It was the first of its kind for the KL#1 outpost, for Calvary Church and for Royal Rangers in Malaysia!

Ranger Derby is a project for Fathers & Rangers to design and build a car out of a block of pinewood before finally racing against other teams. This event is organised by Royal Rangers outposts all over the world and we are proud to be the first outpost in Malaysia to host this event.

Commander Eddy and Rangers final inspection before the race day

It was also the first for most, if not all, of the participants. However, it being a first-time challenge did not deter an overwhelming 30 parents and 36 Rangers from signing up. This was shown in the superb workmanship that many teams put into the design of their cars.

Participants were given three weeks to design and build their car in time to submit for judging on Father’s Day 2015. Cars were given design specifications to meet, including the incorporation of the theme of the event, “Seek Ye First”. Pastor Peter Ong, Pastor Lee Peng and Councilman David Peter had a tough time judging scores for the 36 cars as some of the cars were very well designed.

The Derby event also encouraged children without dads to sign-up with a sponsor to promote the father image; Jothi from Calvaryland and sponsor Max working on her car
The Derby event also encouraged children without dads to sign-up with a sponsor to promote the father image; Jothi from Calvaryland and sponsor Max working on her car.

The Derby race was held on the following Sunday. Praise God for the Multi-Purpose Hall of Calvary Convention Centre that was big enough to house the 30-foot long racetrack and over 200 parents and Rangers who were invited to witness the races. We were blessed to also have special guests with us, Senior Pastor and Sister as well as commanders from Selangor #9, Metro-tabernacle.

Excitement was in the air even before the race started as participants gathered around the Derby car display area to proudly point out their cars to their family and friends. The race began with Derby emcee Commander Samuel Soong and Race Manager Commander Kah Yun welcoming the audience and explaning the rules for the race.

Judges, Pastor Peter, Councilman David and Pastor Lee Peng
Judges, Pastor Peter, Councilman David and Pastor Lee Peng

The names of each car owner were read out as the cars were prepared for each race. Cars were categorised and raced according to the respective groups, Ranger Kids, Discovery Rangers and Adventure Rangers. Kids would gather around the finish line area, especially those whose cars were next up to race, so they could get a first-hand witness to see which car would pass through first.

At the end of all heats, a final race was held to determine the Race Champion. It comprised of the first placed winners from each Heat category. It was certainly a fun-filled first family event!

(more photos at KL#1 Royal Rangers Facebook)