DAY 1 : - 6 KM climb
KOTA KINABALU - KINABALU PARK - LABAN RATA
After 2 ½ hours in a taxi, we arrived Kinabalu park at 8 am, Paid the taxi driver Rm150, Grab our bags and head to the information counter to register ourselves. The name you write on the book will be the name that will be printed on your tag. Paid another RM 100 for our guide, one guide can take a maximum of 6 people and that RM100 should be shared between the 6.
You can also pay someone to carry your stuff for RM8/kg. you will have to pay I think about RM 3 for a van to drive you to the starting point.
After we registered, they gave us food coupons for 2 days. Our first coupon is packed breakfast consist of an apple, a can of 100plus, a piece of fried chicken and white bread with cheese and mayo spread.
We started the climb as soon as we can because the earlier we reach laban rata the more rest we can get before our second climb. They might sell you a stick for RM3, Its personal choice; I did find it useful especially during my descend. If you happen to get the stick make sure you get a light one.
Some did this 6Km climb in 5 ½ hours, we did it in 6 hours, just follow your pace. Minimize your stops, take plenty of pictures along the way because the scenery is absolutely amazing.
We had a few stops a long the way, you can refill you water bottle too with REAL mountain water at every stop.
It was a relief upon reaching Laban Rata. The room has 6 single beds and it was equipped with a heater but somehow we didn’t feel the heater functioning but the blanket provided by the rest house and my snow jacket was sufficient to keep me warm during the night. Tamimi brought along a poncho and we used that as a praying mat in the room.
DAY 2 : - 2.5 Km climb
LABAN RATA - LOWS PEAK - LABAN RATA - KINABALU PARK
Woke up at 2am, got ready, went downstairs for Breakfast and it was raining pretty heavily so the guide said we had to wait till 3am. if the rain doesn’t subside we might have to cancel the climb. fortunately the rain did subside and we began our climb at 3.10am.
after a few minutes of climbing I started to feel some heat since i was wearing 5 layers of cloth, but husband said leave it on, it will get cold on the way. Which was actually true, too many stops to take out a few layers and put it back on is time consuming, and time is all you need to get a nice view of sunrise.
This second part of the climb was a little challenging because at one point we had to climb the rock using a rope. Also There will be a check point at ‘sayat- sayat’ and that will be the final pit stop with a toilet, after that, you will be on your own : ).
I had Tea without sugar that morning so I wont need to go to the toilet : ).
Snapped some pictures a long the way, couldn't take that many because it was freezing cold and i cant take off my gloves for long.
Satisfied with our victory, we took our own sweet time to climb down n reach our cabin. Once there, had something to eat and went to sleep till the room service knocked on our door at 12pm. Bags packed and ready for our 6km descend to kinabalu Park. It took me and my Husband 3 hours to climb down.
used our last coupon for the lunch buffet at Kinabalu park, paid RM10 for our colored certificate and finally found a taxi for rm150 to bring us back to Kota Kinabalu.
p/s - Your Guide will inform you on the time he would like to start the climb as well as the meeting point.
Day 2 Essentials : - Torch, gloves, Rain coat, snow cap, camera, some snacks and 500ml of water.
SUBUH PRAYER (or Fajar prayer)
Since we will be on our way to the peak at the time of fajar prayer, we constantly looked for a place that was rather flat for us to perform our prayer. My suggestion is that along the way if you find a spot just right for prayer don’t hesitate and just perform your prayer there.
This is my friend on their way down after reaching the peak, you will find somewhat a flat surface like this to perform your prayer.
I took ablution using rain water that ran in between two rocks. Took my gloves off, pull my sleeves up and perform ablution the normal way but left my shoes intact. Used my husband’s Qiblah watch and performed our prayer.
With 6 degrees and strong wind the weather was extremely cold, and I think if you could just perform tayamum it should be enough as this is not a normal situation.
TOP TIP !! - "Travel Light"