Friday, August 03, 2018

Tanjung Datu Mountain Range Exploration | Mount Melano | Mount Batu Datu | Lighthouse at tip of Borneo | Coastal Line Trail

Where is Tanjung Datu National Park?
Situated at the far end of the Borneo island (left), its the smallest and the most beautiful national park in Sarawak. I visited this national park on year 2015, you can read the story here.  

I was being invited to join a group of hiking friends to hike along the mountain range start from Park HQ - Belian Trail - Mt Melano summit - Mt Batu Datu summit - Lighthouse of Sarawak & Indonesia - Tip of Borneo - Pasir Beruput Beach - Follow the coastal line - Pasir Antu Laut trail - Telok Labuan Gadong - back to Park HQ, total distance its about 20km, 17 hours to complete one big loop.

Day 1
My packing list for this trip
              • A thirst for adventure
              • 35 litter hiking backpack
              • Hammock
              • Rain coat
              • 2 sets of long clothes
              • 1 set of long pant
              • 1 Undergarment
              • 1 big micro fiber towel
              • 1 pair of socks
              • 1 addidas climacool shoes
              • 3 litters Water bladder
              • 1 small micro fiber towel
              • Headlight
              • Camping light
              • Water filter
              • Flexible water bottle
              • Cooking stove
              • Gas
              • Cooking pot & spoon
              • 5 packs of instant noodles
              • First aid
              • DJI Mavic Pro drone
              • Olympus TG-5 digital camera
              • 10,000 mah power bank
We depart from Sematan long jetty at about 6am, our boatman is waiting for us there early morning. Very reliable and punctual guy.
Along the way we saw Mount Santubong from far away, the Berumput/Pueh Mountain range, and Mount Gading (Gunung Gading National Park).
It takes about 40 mins of boat ride to reach the HQ of Tanjung Datu national park. Our speedboat have duo engines, it cruises very fast.
The entrance fees for the park is RM10 per-person. What I like about Tanjung Datu it has less visitors, so the place is still clean. Not much litter in the park, and if lucky one can even witness the sea turtle lay eggs on shore.
The starting point is at the Belian Trail, as this trail will lead us all the way up to Mount Melano (542m ASL). 

There is a wide and flat space near the peak, suspect this might be a resting point for the park ranger. 
Border stones can be found along the mountain range to indicate that we are at the border. 
Reached the peak of Mount Melano, and one big border stone there. 
So far I'm quite satisfy with this trail, it has clear trail marking, and well maintain. Not much falling branch blocking the way. And every now and then, we are welcome with stunning scenic view by our neighboring country, Kalimantan, Indonesia. 
There is a wide open trail on Kalimatan side, it looks very easy to trek on, so we decided to go over and use that trail. 
This is the road used by the soliders of Kalimantan for patrolling the border. 
I estimate its about 1km long, how I wsh it will lead strait to the lighthouse, but no. Eventually, we still need route our course back to the jungle trail. 
There are two peaks within the mountain range, which is Mount Melano (567m ASL) and Mount Batu Datu (540m ASL), follow by a slow descending slope going all the way to the tip of Borneo. So the trail is relaxing and fun to hike. 
Also there are many of these huge rocks along the range, some of them stacks together, and form a shelter in between. Its a good place to camp, the downside is no water source available. 
And I counted there are around 15 border stone along the range. Saw one of this signboard with some wording on it. Not so sure what it means, but when you see this, you are very close to the lighthouse of both Sarawak, and Indonesia.
We visited both Sarawak and Kalimatan lighthouse, the lighthohuse at Sarawak is smaller and no lighthouse keeper. Where at Kalimantan side, the lighthouse its big and there are 3 lighthouse keepers. They are very friendly, invited us to take a rest there, offer us drink, and let us visit the lighthouse.
This is the lighthouse for Sarawak. 
A birdeyes view of the lighthouse for Sarawak and Kalimatan, the tall one belongs to Kalimantan, where the short one belongs to Sarawak. And the mountain range that we had trek so far, all the way from the park HQ.
We continue with our journey to the tip of Borneo. No proper trail after the lighthouse, dense vegetation, better watch out here because there are many plants with thorns.
We finally made it to the very tip of Borneo, check out the bird eyes view bellow. The stone with border marking on it (white box)
Can you recognize which rock it is with the border marking on it?
The tip of Borneo (refer to the first image in this post)
One interesting its this rock, I believe its must have been very long time here, and that its been carve by nature, and turn into a smooth round ball shape rock. 
The sunset view on the tip of Borneo

Day 2
We camp at a small beach called pantai Pasir Berumput, that beach are made up by broken shells mix with rough sand. There is a small creek just beside our campsite, we use the water for drink, cook, and bath.
There is this triangle platform, my friend told me that this is use as a machine gun platform. The machine gun will be lock by bolt and nut to make it stable. 
8am, of we go on our journey back to the park HQ, our boatman will come pick us at 5pm.
My bagpack is a bit heavy for me, mainly because of my drone, hammock and water. Its a  challenging for me to jump from one rock to another, when land on the rock, my knee can feel the pressure. I will try my best not to injured myself.
I found it very difficult for me to go on the coastal, navigating between rocks with a heavy backpack. My movement is being slow down by the weight I carry, I then told my team leader that I will use the jungle trail to get to park HQ. So I started my own journey back, at first the trail was still smooth, but the vegetation get dense, very dense. 
Until I'm not sure on how to move forward, just look at the picture here, so I check on my GPS, and decide to route to the coastal again. I slowly move to the coastal, and saw my friends are there, slowly moving from rock to rock. I called them up, and re-group with the team again. 
Unfortunately one of my friend accidentally twisted her leg, her leg starts to get swollen, and unable to move forward. So she and one team member volunteer to stay back to wait for the boat to pick them after 5pm later. For the rest of us, continue on. 
Most of us had finish our drinking water, and no place for us to refill. Can I eat this fruit to stay hydrate?
The scene are beautiful, but challenging to navigate is tough.
Plastic waste being wash on shore. 
We almost reach pasir Antu Laut beach, just a few meter away. But then encountered a problem, there was a beehive in front of us, and two friends got stung by bees. I was at the back with 4 more person, we plan to cross by going to the sea, but its too deep. In the end, I told my friends that lets just go for it, just let the bees stunk us. So 1, 2, 3.... off we go, and a ouch that hurts. 
After all the jumping from rock to rock, finally reach this place the beautiful pasir Antu Laut, water are crystal clear. We continue our hike back to HQ, its a smooth trail which nicely maintain by park ranger for us to trek back to the park HQ.
Reached the park HQ at about 4pm, and we still have an hour to rest and cleanup before the boat pickup.
After the boat pickup at 5pm, not to forget to pickup my friend who injured her leg, and another team member who volunteer to stay back and company her. 
Day 1 - 8am - 5pm, easy route, with scenic view and beautiful rocks formation along the trail.
Day 2 - 8am - 4pm, very painful to navigate from rock to rock with heavy backpack. Need to wear shoes with good grip. 
A panoramic view of the Tanjung Datu moutain range


SAMSUNG said...

Wow!!What a insane trip that you EXPLORING the TANJUNG DATU MOUNTAIN RANGE!!
And the panoramic view is so beautiful.However,I haven't heard that there is mountain range.So,keep going on your Exploring Trip at Borneo and thank you for explore the place and share the info about there.Still,I am supporting THE BORNEO EXPLORER.

Wilson Chin said...

Thank you Samsung :)

kaneh bosm said...

Any info on Gunung Batu Datu?

KCnYian said...

Enjoyed reading your trekking trips very much, esp the Tg Datu one. Reminded me of my trip to Tg Datu lighthouse; there were 3 of us and we were there to survey for rptors (eagles etc) migrating across the South China Sea from Indochina. The climb from the beach up to the lighthouse was a killer. Wish I was young again to follow in your footsteps! Thanks for sharing and stay safe!
K C Lim