The R@SKLs have ridden to Teluk Intan several times over the past few years. We will remember this trip more for the searing temperatures than the udang galah dinner.
We set ourselves up for a potentially hot ride by choosing the 9.09am departure from Kuang station rather than an earlier train. The sun was already out when we arrived at the otherwise deserted station.
The KTM Komuter train rolled in on time.
Bicycles are allowed in the first and last carriages. We got ourselves and fourteen bikes onboard the rear carriage for the hour or so long journey to Tanjung Malim.
The cyclocross portion of our ride came at the Tanjung Malim station.
Most of us had not eaten yet that morning. It was a 3km ride to Restoran Yik Mun. Famous for its pau.
Amongst the orders for pau, kaya toast, and half-boiled eggs were three Hainanese chicken chops. These were big servings of Hainanese chicken chop. Two riders later regretted eating that.
It was 11:15am when we were ready to start riding to Teluk Intan.
Look at that clear blue sky and sharp shadows. It was 34ºC / 93ºF at noon. Half an hour later it was 36ºC / 97ºF.
The 85km ride to Teluk Intan was punctuated by regular stops to get out of the sun.
A stop in the rare shade at the edge of the road near Trolak.
A stop in Restoran Shakir near Sungkai.
A stop at a roadside fruit stall at Kampung Baharu Kuala Bikam. Where it was 39 ºC / 102ºF.
Despite the enervating heat, everyone made it to the Yew Boutique Hotel. We were all (well, all but one) glad that we hadn’t had to carry our stuff with us in saddle packs. Many thanks to my Biker Chick for driving to Teluk Intan with our bags.
One of the attractions of the Yew Boutique Hotel is the bicycle parking area in the hotel loby.
Teluk Intan is famous for the Liew Kee (Ah Lek) Chee Cheong Fun shop. The chee cheong fun is so good that we had some before heading to our rooms to shower.
The next order of business after freshening up was rehydration. Which came in several forms.
After drinks and naps, it was time for the main event. A dinner of udang galah.
The restaurant is on a bank of the Sungai Perak. The view from the restaurant of the herons flying over the river is nice.
Much more attention was paid to the food though.
The evening ended with photographs at the iconic Menara Chondong, and more drinks and ais kacang at the food court nearby.
The challenges of the ride to Teluk Intan prompted us to plan for an early departure in the morning. Which would give us plenty of time to catch the 11.45am train from Tanjung Malim.
We were on our way into the rising sun at 7:15am.
The sky was clear, but the shadows cast by the trees kept the air relatively cool. The temperature was below 30ºC / 86ºF until we got to Slim River. Two-thirds of the distance to Tanjung Malim.
We took a restroom break at the Petron station at Batu 8 Changkat Jong, and a food and water break at the Petronas station in Slim River. We were at the Tanjung Malim station just after 11:00am, to find that a new train schedule had been implemented that morning. The 11:45am service that we had planned to catch was no more. The next train would leave at 12:35pm.
With time to burn, we went to McDonald’s. Ready to ride back to the station after our lunch, Nic and I were confronted with flat tires. Fortunately, we had pumps and our tires held enough air for long enough to get back to the station. The train was waiting as we repeated the cyclocross routine up and down the stairs to get to the correct platform.
We were both glad that we hadn’t flatted while on the road. Changing a tube in the cool of the carriage was infinitely preferable to doing it in the sun at the roadside.
Our plan had been to take the MRT from Sungai Buloh station to Kota Damansara, to avoid the risky ride from Sungai Buloh station onto Jalan Sungai Buloh. That plan flew out the window because the MRT service between Sungai Buloh station and Kwasa Damansara is suspended.
We tried to get our bikes onto a feeder bus to Kwasa Damansara. A “yes” from the driver quickly changed to a “no” when he saw that there were more than just a couple of us.
We negotiated the access to Jalan Sungai Buloh without incident. Unsurprisingly, it was hot at 2:00pm. 41ºC / 106ºF hot. Luckily we had only 15km to 20km to pedal, depending on where we had started cycling from the day before.
My Biker Chick got home with our bags just before I did. Not only were we all grateful once again for not having to haul our stuff with us on our bikes. One of us was also grateful that she managed to convince Liew Kee (Ah Lek) to sell her twenty packets of chee cheong fun at noon. The shop doesn’t open until 3:00pm.
The day ended with almost all of us meeting at Kwong Cheung Loong Kopitiam for drinks, food, laughter and to collect bags and chee cheong fun.
Some of us ended the evening at Joloko with coconut shakes and more food.
We are already planning our next overnight cycling tour. Hopefull with less or no sunburn.