Thursday, June 6, 2013

FRIM

A brainstorm...

So, there I was, day dreaming again.
While warming up my brains, the thought of cycling in the Forest Research Institute of Malaysia came to mind.
"Ummmm.. This place is in Kepong, I've been there a few times, the trails are not bad and its pretty foldie-friendly..," I thought out loud.
Then, I did a search on Google and came up with some interesting blogs about cycling in this area.
Basically, there are two sections to ride around the FRIM. On-road and offroad.
Cyclists are charged RM5 per entry for each bike and since there are ample parking in the area, it should be interesting to give it a try.

An early session in FRIM
We're gonna do it sooner or later...

Some folding bike cyclists have ridden in the area and gave this trail a really good mention.
Our plan was to explore the place and see as much as we could.
So, Michelle and I had set out on a Saturday morning to Kepong from our home in Subang Jaya.
We arrived at Taman Ehsan Kepong and had breakfast in a coffee shop.
The curry pan mee there was not bad.
After a good fill, we drove to the FRIM entrance where the free carparks were already packed to the brim.
It was the Yang DiPertuan Agong's birthday, so, it was a public holiday.
There were a lot of hikers and people who went there to do their walk on the trail.
We saw many mountain bikers who parked their vehicles and rode out to the area.
After scouting for a carpark, we found a nice place to set up our bikes at the entrance of the FRIM Botanical Garden.
Right beside us, was a Toyota Hi-Lux pick up with its engine running.
Its really an irony to see some dude "going green" with his car engine chugging away.
Anyway, the guy was a prick as he behaved like the whole world had owed him a living, so fuck him!
We rigged up the bikes and rode to the FRIM's main building.

One of the easy trails
Michelle riding her Dahon Jetstream P8
The light trail

We found a dirt track near some worker's quarters in FRIM.
It was an easy loop and the trail was really beautiful.
But it was short.
Michelle and I ended up at the entrance of the trail after a 10-minute ride.
We felt that this would be suitable to conduct an outdoor workshop for the members of the Malaysian Foldies to do offroad cycling.

Rover trail and Steroid hill

Well, after some snooping around, we found the trail head leading up to "Steroid Hill".
This is where the fun begins!

Queuing up for cyclist on the Rover trail

A nice view of the city 

Rolling away on the dirt track
"You don't belong here.."

We rode past some mounties along the way.
Some gave us a dirty look, as if we were snatching away their fun on the trail.
Way I see it, the dirt track is for all to share and its courtesy to give way to those rolling downhill like a bat out of hell.
I yelled at Michelle to move aside so that those maniacal showoffs would get through.
Then, a group of middle aged Malay men said: "Wah, folding bike pun boleh!"
The Rover trail seemed short and it leads to the Steroid Hill, which is basically a steep climb on gravel road.
When we exited the trail, I asked one of the Mounties about the trails in FRIM and where it leads to.
"Ah, you end up in Hospital Sungai Buluh la..," said one of them.
That wasn't on my agenda, so the sane thing to do, was to turn back to the trail head.
Michelle and I felt that we've achieved something by completing the ride on the trail.
We did tried to cycle up the Steroid Hill, but our tires weren't meant for gravel and dirt tracks. 
At one point, the hill was so steep, my front wheel was doing a wheelie!

A stream found along the trail

Our Jetstreams

Getting there and back...

We spent about three hours on the trail and covered quite a bit.
Michelle and I were quite satisfied with the ride and how our bikes handled along the way.
The full-suspension really helped in taking the knocks and bumps.
Later, I cracked a joke about getting killed and eaten by cyclists riding their little pink folding bikes, where some folks actually took it seriously.
I guess with such a safe area to ride, we might go back to FRIM to follow-up on other trails...
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