Gunung Irau – The Mystical Mountain
Gunung Irau (Mount Irau) is located near Brinchang town in Cameron Highlands, Pahang. This mountain marks the border of two states, Pahang & Perak. At the highest point of 6,923ft or 2,110m, its rank fifteen highest mountain in Malaysia and ninth highest in Peninsular Malaysia.
Gunung Irau (Mount Irau) @ Cameron Highlands
24 July 2010
It’s relatively the easiest mountain to climb at this height. Among Top 10 Mountains in Peninsular Malaysia, Irau is slightly 80 meters lower than Gunung Tahan. Gunung Tahan requires about many days to reach its peak (camp in jungle) while Irau is only takes 3 hours to reach its peak with steep ascent at certain points. Overnight in camp is optional.
There are two reasons; first of all, the track starts at trunk road with relatively high altitude, the highest paved road in Peninsular Malaysia. Secondly, the distance from the entrance to the peak is only 2.35km, can be done comfortably within 7 hours for a return trip.
It was a hard decision to make whether I should climb Gunung Irau or not this round. It’s due to work commitment and appointment in the weekend. At last, I decided to cancel the appointment and delay my work, so that I could catch up this golden opportunity to hike Gunung Irau with my old buddies. Oh yeah!
As this was my last minutes decision, I only start packing my stuffs on Friday and took an emergency half day leave to prepare for my 6.30pm flag off from house. We were expected to reach by 12am after our meet up at Ipoh. Instead, we reached at 1am. We quickly prepared ourselves for next day hiking.
There were 11 of us in the group. We actually have seen each other before, so it was relatively easier to communicate.
We had booked our accommodation earlier at Num Song Apartment @ Tanah Rata. The price is quite economical, aiming at family or group who prefers complete house facilities. The unit costs us RM286 per night with 3 rooms.
As early as 7.00am, everyone woke up to prepare for the challenge. At 8.00am, we had our light breakfast at nearby mamak stall. We drove towards Brinchang Town, turn into Palas Tea Boh Garden signboard stated Gunung Brinchang with a small one-way trunk road until we saw the entrance of Stesyen Mikro Gunung Brinchang.
Early breakfast … simple but enough
Great view … tea farm by the local
Magnificent view … a rare opportunity
Look for this sign … correct direction
Leading road … very close to the farm
We were pretty excited to reach here and among the earliest to reach! Soon after 10 minutes, a group of 40+ people arrived and the crowd started to begin.
Our group shot … before start
Our shoes to prove the cleanliness … before start
Mixed with big group … before start
Officially we started our trekking @ 9.20am on this nicely made wooden walkway to make us feel relax. We walked about 200 meters on this walkway and we saw a very scenic moment out there. The mountain ranges across the border of states.
Wooden walkway … just enjoy while you can
Rest hut … for non-hiker
Found a dry snake … not dare to verify
Mark the ending … of relaxing mood
At the end of this walkway, we started descending. We were been told that the descending actually from Gunung Brinchang. When we start ascending, we were actually starting our Gunung Irau hiking. This took us an hour plus. We were like stepping into the fantasy misty wonderland. Imagine it.
The mossy forest is covered with green carpets, roots and mud combined with the soft cushion-like ground makes a fantasy world comes to life. Our beautiful and clean shoes have become soaking with mud and look dirty. Even it wasn’t raining day, the ground is very muddy. So if you want to avoid these muddy traps, you will have to look for roots to step on. The terrain which was covered by mud and soft ground is quite challenging and we have scrambled a lot over exposed rooty trees.
What no one crossing the center? … It’s a TRAP!
Marking the border … between two states
Mossy forest … covered with mist
Rooty route … step on it carefully
Green carpet … soft and wet
I was surprise with the most scenic I ever saw in my life and won’t let go any view from my sight of DSLR camera. The track wasn’t too tough to hike but the entire environment has created a new experience as a hiker. While hiking in between an hour to two, we were acknowledging with the distance and remaining distance to reach the top. A motivation to us!
Completed 0.8km only … 1.55km to go
Done 1.4km in 2 hours … another 0.95km to go
In merely 3 hours, we had reached the peak, a false peak according to the experienced hikers. No view, just rubbish everywhere. There was actually another 800m to go, which roughly one hour to complete.
Another 0.35km to go … gambate!
Camping can be built on this false peak with spacious area. However, with the temperature of about 10-15 degrees Celsius, you need to prepare thick clothes and blanket in the camp. Also some sufficient food and water to keep you warm through-out the night.
Strong scene of fantasy land … how could I resist it?
Nice, nice, nice … speechless
Yo!! I’m finally at the highest peak of Gunung Irau. The notice board stated the altitude and height from sea level. Congratulation everyone. Just enjoy the scenery and weather. We have ample of time to stay at summit but as time goes by, more peoples joining us and it has become crowded. About an hour later, we started to descend.
Mount Irau peak … proved!
Our group of achievers … looks good and satisfied
Our dirty shoes … just partially, later even worse
Crowd slowly build up … wondering how to build a camp at peak
Small area on the peak … hardly can see any view here
About 3 hours plus, we’d reached the starting point. It has marked our hiking completion.
Completed! … Well done.
Gunung Irau is really a good trek to do hiking. It was so enjoyable to be part of them to explore this mountain together. Thanks to all. We shall explore another mountain soon.
At last, I have completed my mission on 9th highest mountain in Peninsular Malaysia. By excluding Gunung Batu Putih, that’s mean, I’m ready for G7 Summit Challenges anytime soon, just matter of commitment only. LOL.