All the exhaustion that was meant to see half of the western part of the island in the day propelled us to a good night sleep afterwards. Indeed, it was a “mission accomplished” in our pockets. We dozed off soundly with the cold sea breeze gently piercing into the chalet until the sound of the phone alarm at 6AM prodded us for a brand new day to be seized. It was time for jungle trekking to Juara, a village in the east.
Fried noodles and coffee for breakfast were esteemed to be adequate for the journey - with a stock of energy bars, some junks, and water in our backpacks.
The signboard at the foot of the mountain said it would be a 7km trek to Juara. We got our itchy feet started at 7:41AM. It should be easier this time since the last trek had us fully-stretched, I thought. It didn’t hurt as much of a hurdle for the first few minutes over because the trail was more pronounced, even cemented, but the steepness of it, of what seemed to be an eternal stairway (our feet probably landed on over hundreds of steps if not close to a thousand) left us begging to stop almost every minute, or was it just me. It was never easy.
Good thing, no snake chanced to greet us along the way. It would have been so polite of them, thus accelerating our pace, though, a local assured us that there were no poisonous snakes in the jungle. No fauna visible, not even a single bird showed up. We were merely among the trees.
After exactly 1 hour, we were finally out of the jungle. If we had traversed a perfectly symmetrical mountain and found our way up to its peak, then walking down the slope would be another hour lapsed equally, forgetting rolling. It was a rather straightforward walk, but braking every time with my able legs was causing some stress on my knees, nonetheless.
We went side-tripping to a waterfall just a few meters from the roadside, took some pictures until another group of tourists arrived.
We continued our way to Juara, this time seeing monkeys and a shy squirrel. At 9:29AM, the Juara welcome signboard greeted us, saying “Selamat datang di Juara,” and at 9:40AM, we had finally arrived at the beach. So 2 hours is what it takes for a 7km trek from Tekek to Juara beach.
Juara appealed to me as a ghost town with only the waves coming from the South China Sea roaring and crashing onto its long, wide, and white beach breaking the silence. The village is perfect if you want the peace and quiet you’ve always wanted, and, for me, Juara offers the best beach among others on the island.
We soon realized that there is a surfing competition being held annually in Juara. Some people went surfing at that time while we tried for the first time skimboarding (we have just realized this very week that that board we borrowed from the kind restaurant girl where we had lunch at wasn’t a surf board, ha ha). I felt that surfing or skimboarding is something worth a second try next time.
At 12:17PM, we took a van going back to Tekek for 30 ringgit each and arrived twenty minutes later.
Our trip back to Mersing was scheduled at 4:30PM, but we departed so late at 5:23PM. I understood that because of the low tides, and, not to my surprise, we were at a complete slo-mo nearing Mersing.
If you could still remember in Part I, the trip versioning went to an all-time high to as far as version D. The supposed plan was that Kuala Lumpur would be the last stop on the trip, but it was the holidays! How could we forget that buses also have a time off? Buses are the only means of transportation to KL (discounting the highly-priced taxis), so we resorted to just taking a taxi to Johor Bahru. We were reluctantly going back home, ending our adventure, and trying to forget Kuala Lumpur.
|we crept our way to the jungle, while everyone was still sleeping|
|fried noodles and coffee for breakfast|
|onwards to the foot of the mountain to Juara|
|hibiscus rosa-sinensis (the gumamela) - the national flower of Malaysia|
|the starting point of a 7km journey|
|huggable enough of a trunk!|
|drinking water catchment area|
|the stairway to eternity|
|they're fighting for sunlight|
|featuring my formidable stick to ward off the enemies|
|left to right: the paved road and the road less travelled; we just came from the latter|
|the long downward walk|
|pointing to the waterfall|
|she was threatened perhaps, so she towered herself up|
|Selamat datang di Juara (Welcome to Juara)|
|we did it!|
|still Juara beach|
|still the same surfing beach|
|monkey boy (that's me!)|
|thanks to Adidas, our main sponsor (wishful thinking! ha ha!)|
|my ever-reliable red Habagat bag|
|Juara Surfing Competition 2010|
|spicy fried rice for lunch with watermelon fruit shake|
|back to Tekek|
|ticket to Mersing|
|still don't know the name of this little friend, anyone who can help me out?|