Saturday, April 28, 2012

Bikecamping - Pertak, Part 3

Speed and agility
I love tarp shelters for two reasons: its lightweight and easy to set-up.
Its great for warm weather, but has certain flaws in rainy days.
I prayed that the weather would hold. It did.
After identifying the suitable place to camp, Roger and I wasted no time in setting up our shelters.
It took me about 20-minutes to rig up the shelter's pole and fly sheet support.
I had the ground sheet firmly anchored with a set of aluminium pegs.

The rest of the chore was to secure the shelter and set up my sleeping pad.
With a thermarest mat and a sleeping bag, its taken care of for the night.
Later, we piled some firewood to set up a campfire. This keeps wild animals at bay. 
The campsite was not really ideal, because its quite dirty.
Lots of thrash and empty canned food tins left behind by campers. 

This is an ideal breeding ground for gnats and I paid a hefty price for sleeping in their domain.

Journey to the campsite

An orang asli dog, later, some raided our camp for food

My tarp shelter

At the fireplace
Enter night..
I had my tarp shelter rigged with a Black Diamond Orbit lantern. 
Its small enough to be carried in a pocket and yields enough juice to brighten up the place.
For general lighting, I packed a Black Diamond Apollo lantern. This one has enough juice to light up a small perimeter.
Not as bright as a Camping Gaz 1000 watt lantern, but enough.
The light was failing, so, in-between chores, I took out my MSR hyperflow water filter to get some water for cooking as well as preparing beverages.

Boiling water on my trusty Optimus Svea 123 stove

Roger at work

Dinner time
I unpacked my Optimus Svea 123 hiker's stove. With it, I had two Camping Gaz globetrotter pots. 
With these, I used it to boil the filtered water.
Coffee was in order as I sat down with Roger to review the day's work.
We have set out to bikepack and camp and we did just that.
The rest of the night, was a test of patience and comfort.
I had my shelter rigged with a sleeping pad, so, its enough to insulate my back from the ground and a sleeping bag to keep warm when dew forms in the jungle.
The first half of the night was a torture.
Gnats bit my back, elbow and hands.
It was itchy and irritating.
The humidity was tremendous. Its hard to sleep with sweat trickling down my face.
By 2am, the temperature dropped. 
Insect activities slowed down and this allowed me to sleep for at least three hours.
That was the highlight of my day in the jungle!
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