Trails of Borneo Trip Code AOB

Hello

Hoping to get with others who are on this trip, departing on 13 Sep returning 28 Sep 08

Look forward to hearing from you! Abbie x

terry_p

Hi Abbie,

I booked this trip on Saturday, can't wait! Hopefully we can get some discussions going on this notice board... it's my first trip of this type so I need all the advice I can get!

Terry

terry_p

Hi Abbie,

Good to hear from you. This discussion forum could be useful, but it could do with notifications when new messages are posted as I'm probably only going to check it every couple of weeks until nearer the time... maybe it would be easier if everyone who registers on our trip exchanges email addresses?

Mine is terry.pollard at gmail.com

Got to get back to work for now, talk later.

Terry

acooke1

Hi Terry

Glad you got in touch. I booked the trip in January/February and have been the only person on it for ages! I phoned Exodus last week and I think there are 6 of us at the moment. I have never done a trekking trip but I did do an overland trip with GAP Adventures last year, Zambia, Botswana and South Africa for 2 weeks. That was my first trip and it was a little scary! Feeling much happier about Borneo, just working on my fitness as I want to get to the top of Mount Kinabalu! Have you done any trips before? I'm going to be cheeky and ask how old you are, where you're from and wht you do! It's nice to have an idea of who you'll be joining on the trip so... I'm 19, I live in Swindon, Wiltshire and I work at the Defence Academy as an Administrative contractor for the Royal Air Force.

Look forward to hearing from you and let's hope some more of our group get in touch!

Abbie

Hi everyone .... Mike and I are both coming on this trip, so we will be looking forward to meeting you.  We have done a few treks/bike rides in the past (mostly the big charity ones), and are both really looking forward to this one.  Mind you, having seen the pics of the "walk" up to the Pinnaces (ie. fixed ropes and ladders on what looks like "interesting" slopes), it looks a hell of a challenge!  We live just outside Banbury and would love to meet up pre-trip if possible.  Only about 10 weeks or so to go, so time to start thinking seriously about fitness!  Our main "training" is that we do quite a lot of walking (great walking round our way!).  Hope to hear from you .... Rona

acooke1

Hello Rona and Mike

 So glad you got in touch. I paid off the trip last week and there are ten of us booked on :-) Terry and I have been swapping ideas via e-mail (e-mail addresses above) but it's great to be in contact with you too. Are you flying out from Heathrow?

I have been slacking with my training for the past month and I know I seriously need to step it up now! I can't believe how quickly it is coming around.

It'd be good if we could organise a walk (perhaps including a pub lunch!!) before we head to Borneo. What do you think? Terry lives in Oxford and I'm in Wiltshire.

Right, enough excited travel talk, back to work!

Bye for now

Abs x

Mikeyboy

Hello guys,

I did this trip a couple of years ago, so thought you might be interested in a few bits of info.

 Firstly, it is an awesome trip, every day would be a highlight on any other holiday.

The only word of warning I'd give is about the pinnacles trek. Do not underestimate this. It is quite hard and the greatest challenge is coming down rather than going up. I feel that the brochure doesn't really give a fair warning of how difficult it is and i actually found it harder than kinabalu. When we stayed at the camp there was our exodus group which I think had about 12 people in it of varying ages, and then there was a group of about 20 dutch tourists who were all in their mid to late 20s. Everyone set off at 7.30 in the morning to start the trek. 10 of our exodus group started the trek as a couple of people were carrying sprains and strains. all 10 of us got to the top at roughly midday. The 4 who were a bit ahead made it back down fairly quickly, but the other 6 (including me) didn't get back down until about 7pm, by which time it was pitch black and we were greeted by lots of anxious people back at the camp - even the dutch looked worried. Don't worry about this too much though, your guide will always be the last one down and they also sent someone up after us from the camp with water and food, but we were very nearly down by the time we met him - take lots of water and your head lamp.

Only 4 of the dutch group made it up and down - most gave up before they got half way up!

I hope this doesn't put you off, go for it and keep going and with a bit of determination even someone of modest fitness can do it, but don't go thinking it's a stroll. 

Don't worry too much about leaches and sickness - you'll definitely get a few leaches but don't think any of our group had any stomach upsets.  

Waterproof bag liners are a very good idea. One of our long boats crashed in some rapids and half our group and all their gear got dumped into the river - one guy had a state of the art camera and DVD cam ruined. Luckily I was on the other boat!

 I hope you enjoy your trip and will gladly answer any questions you may have about it, although I'm no expert and memory may be a bit rusty.

acooke1

Mike

 Thanks so much for the advice. Your warning on the difficulty of the trek only backs up what I already know - I have seriously got to get fit! Having been busy with work and coming down with a cold I haven't done much phys for a month but I attempted a run last night and it wasn't too bad! Onwards and upwards!

Going back to the leeches, if you get one on you how do you get it off? Are there any bits and pieces that you felt would have been useful? I appreciate it's been a while!

Oh also, how many £'s did you exchange? Were there many opportunities to buy souvenirs etc?

Thanks for taking the time to write

Abbie

Yeah I agree totally with Mikey on the pinnacles, two of our group only made it back sometime around 8PM. Going down is very difficult, we were told not to bring trekking poles for the pinnacles but I think they would have helped. To get a leech off spray repellent on it. I'd recommend Aquapac bags to keep electronics, passports etc dry. I have put more tips in the Arrivals forum.

Cheers

 Jon

Mikeyboy

Yeah, leeches will drop off after being sprayed with some insect repellent. We were quite worried about leeches before we went but whilst everyone in our group got a couple it was no big deal - think of them as pets. I got two the whole trip, one on my hand and one on my leg. Others in the group got quite a few. I recommend always wearing trousers in the jungle. Half the time you won't notice you've got one until it's been there for ages and is the size of a grape.

Souvenirs - KK has all the shops you could ask for, but I seem to remember we also stopped off at a little village one day where you can buy handicrafts.

Can't recall how much currency I used, but it's a pretty cheap place altogether as long as you avoid the overtly touristy places or shops that have a captive audience like manukan island.

 Can't think of anything in particular you need to take, other than what's specified in the trip notes. string comes in handy for all sorts of things.

Mikeyboy

Just remembered one other thing. When you get to Laban Rata on the Kinabalu climb, you may be given the choice of staying in the main building or in one of the little huts slightly higher up.

The little huts look okay and we decided to stay in one of them as we had heard it gets too hot in the main building. Only problem is you will be visitied by lots of rats during the night. They were literally running all over the place all night.

 

We stayed in the huts further up as well. I did not see or hear any rats. A few people were cold trying to sleep, you need to wear thermals. Also take flip flops for the bathrooms/showers and watch your stuff carefully as there are a lot of people traipsing in and out. I got a bad altitude induced headache during the night, have some paracetamol handy.

acooke1

Yes thermals and flip flops are already on the check list...maybe I'll try and stay in the main building just in case!

 Thanks guys :-)

Hi everyone

It's great to have all the tips from previous "explorers"!!  I can see this is going to be a real challenge!  But I've never yet said "I can't do it" ... and hope not to start now!  It would be great to meet up with anyone within striking distance of the Oxford area ... our email address is [email protected] - perhaps we can fix something up. 

It's only just over 8 weeks now!  Ooo-eck!

Rona/Mike

terry_p

A few of us are meeting up this Sunday (3rd August). If there is anyone going on this trip in September and wants to get in contact, I'm sure we will be meeting up again sometime before the end of August. We will be going for a walk near Oxford... I'm sure walking across the Cotswolds stopping off at various pubs along the way is just like Borneo... although saying that I don't remember this description in the trip notes??

Rich_Pollard

Just wanted to say Hi and add my name to the list of people going on 13/09.

The only other 'adventure' type holiday I've done was Kiimanjaro for a charity back in 2002. I have been dilligently (well, nearly) going to the gym trying to get in shape for it, but you always worry you haven't done enough, but we'll see!

I am slightly concerned about the pinnacles as I lost my left arm 15 years ago and am concerned I may not be able to manage the ladders involved, it'll depend what sort of angle they're at! It doesn't stop me snowboarding every year and almost, (bloomin' altitude) getting to the summit of Kili, so I don't intend it to prevent me here! :o)

 Looking forward to meeting everybody in 4 (!) weeks!

Rich

Mikeyboy

Hi Rich,

You will see from my posts above that I did this trip a few years ago.

As I remember, the pinnacles trek has some steps and ropes to help on some of the steeper bits, and then when you get near the top there are ladders so that you can actually scale the limestone and reach the point from which you can see the pinnacles opposite. These ladders are vertical and are metal with quite thin rungs.  

I found them okay, but may be tricky with one arm. I'm sure you'll get there though.

 I hope my comments about the pinnacles haven't worried anyone unduly. It is hard, but you don't have to be super fit (I certainly am not), and with perseverence you'll make it.

 I wish you all luck and hope you all have a great time.  

terry_p

I see that there are now 12 on the trip... only a few weeks to go!

Add new comment

Login or register to post comments

My Forum Activity

You have not posted anything in the forum yet.

Please create a topic or reply to a topic to see your forum activity.

Latest Forum Topics

Call us on 0208 772 3936