Borneo Equator Expedition - Jungle , Swamps and Heatstroke

Discussion in 'Ride Reports - Epic Rides' started by KTMInduro, Jun 2, 2010.

  1. KTMInduro

    KTMInduro Off Road Montster Supporter

    Joined:
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    Bali, Indonesia
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    We ride into this clearing. Its our first Dayak village and its not quite what I expected. Before the trip I had had a romantic Nat Geo vision of Dayaks living in a long house, covered in traditional tattoos and carrying blowpipes deep in the jungle.

    Progress had got to this Dayak village. No long houses, no tattoos and only shorts and t-shirts, but at this moment the modern world and its creature comforts are very welcome.

    One house has a genset and a small shop selling cold drinks and instant noodles . Its bloody paradise. :beer

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    Yes - even this tastes good :huh

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    We hang out here for a couple of hours.

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    I go for a wander and explore around the place

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    Our host tells us that logging is illegal here, but Dayak's are still alllowed to fell trees if they use the timber for their own use and don't sell it.
    However a 15x15 x 400 cm hard wood plank gets Rp 50,000 (about $5) on the black market. This is a huge amount of money to these people and he tells us that a truck comes into the village once or twice a month in the middle of the night to take what ever timber they may have away. That same plank in Bali would cost about $50.
  2. Jamie

    Jamie .

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    Love it. I'm in for the duration.:lurk
  3. offthetrail

    offthetrail Adventure Schemer

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    Home base: Edmonton
    This is sweet! Made me late for work today... But I still need more - please help feed my addiction!
  4. artunltd

    artunltd Adventurer

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    Land of Kimche Korea
    Keep the report coming. Last summer me and 2 other guys did 3 weeks in Malaysian Borneo. Nothing near as hairy as your trip, but was great.
    Cheers
  5. Klay

    Klay dreaming adventurer Super Supporter

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    Wow! That terrain looks impossible!
  6. KTMInduro

    KTMInduro Off Road Montster Supporter

    Joined:
    May 31, 2005
    Oddometer:
    514
    Location:
    Bali, Indonesia
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    We start to descend out of the mountains.

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    These guys are illegal loggers and give us very menacing looks when we pass. i guess they think we could be cops.

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    Eventually we get to this ferry. The kids and their father push us across for 0.20 c a bike. This sure beats the last river crossing !


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    Didi guns his bike off the raft and nearly goes head first into the bank :lol3

    We are soon back into palm oil plantations and it is incredibly hot.

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    I get a puncture in my rear , but fortunately we're pretty close to a village and I'm able to ride it for a couple of kilometres.

    In the course of the next 10 kilometres I get another 2 flats , one which we repair together.

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    The last time I'm forced to stop theres only Eca behind me and he tells me he'll be back and chases after the others. I get a premonition that they won't be back.
    Rudy had only told me yesterday, about one time they had deserted Teddy, one of the guys on the Sulawesi ride, a few years earlier, after he had had a mechanical. Funny things premonitions.

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    Its getting late and I'm alone in the middle of this bloody huge maze of a plantation.

    It takes me an hour but I manage to change out the tube for my spare 21" tube without assistance which is a personal first. The bastard trials tyre doesn't make it easy though, but I'm stoked. I also find the the cause for all the flats today is a nail that i somehow missed earlier. :stupid

    I get back on the road. Its now nearly dark and it starts to pour with rain.
    The next 20 kilometres are not easy at all. I'm soaked, tired and hungry and I'm navigating by my GPS which keeps turning itself off.

    I see a huge palm oil refinery and stop outside its gates to get my bearings. My GPS is telling me a couple of kilometres past the refinery is an ashphalt road. A couple of locals emerge from a hut and tell me that the road ahead is flooded and its impossible to pass. They then offer to show me an alternative route.

    They lead me back off into the plantation. Its pitch dark and I wonder if these guys are for real or have other intentions :eek1

    Fortunatly they are just really helpful guys and don't rob me or worse, and before I know it I'm out on the asphalt road.

    It is now raining so hard though that its impossible to ride. I take cover in a small warung and drink coffee for an hour and make calls back to Bali on my phone, the first since we left Pontianak. Its great to talk to my wife and kids. My wife asks me if I'm having fun. I reply "I guess so ".:lol3

    I ride into the town of Nangah Pinoh at about 9pm. I'm shattered, but the cold beers and food in a Chinese restaurant are just amazing.

    They others have been here for about 3 hours, have checked into a small grotty hotel on the main street and have cleaned up. Eca takes me aside and tells me how sorry he was for not coming back. No worries Bro, but you lot can use your own tyre spoons from now on :lol3

    I check in and organise a masseuse. :wink:

    Theres a knock on the door and my masseuse turns out to be male, but crikey he knows what he's doing and he pummels me to pieces. Ouch.
    td63 likes this.
  7. spk

    spk n00b

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    spetacoloo!:clap
  8. magsd

    magsd two stroke fanatic

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    Location:
    Pulsnitz (D)
    Unbelievable ... amazing ride! Thanks for sharing! :clap
  9. EwliyaCelebi

    EwliyaCelebi Adventurer

    Joined:
    Apr 3, 2008
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    44
    This is the adventure...
    This is the expedition...
    And you did it well :drums
    Conguralations...

    Thanks a lot for your great share...
  10. Marshallblank

    Marshallblank Been here awhile

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    Atlantis
    Amazing!! especially the bold one!! hahahah.. great RR PAK! Kami semua salut!!

  11. LatvianStallion

    LatvianStallion Uldis Rokis

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    Latvia
    Please go on!!!! I am waiting:freaky
  12. HickOnACrick

    HickOnACrick Groovinator Super Supporter

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    captures.crunching.farewell
    Absolutely Brilliant. Who was the guy from Utah? I am guessing he was one of the fools in a 4x4?
  13. KTMInduro

    KTMInduro Off Road Montster Supporter

    Joined:
    May 31, 2005
    Oddometer:
    514
    Location:
    Bali, Indonesia
    Day 5

    Nangah Pinoh to Way Point 247 / Base Camp 4

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    Last night I washed all my gear in the bath. The Fords are apparently in town somewhere, but I don't know where and I now only have the gear that I packed yesterday morning in my Camelbak.

    I wander around in a sarong and sandals in the hotel having breakfast whilst trying to dry my Dainese jacket, socks and biking shorts on the air conditioner unit outside the window. I'm told that we roll at about 1pm.

    I get on my bike and ride through town making a right spectacle of myself trying to avoid getting my sarong caught in the chain, as I search for the Fords and also try to find a workshop that has a 18' inner tube. I also find a place that pressure washes my bike and it looks relatively new again.

    The Fords when I find them are in the process of being welded together again as all the winching in the past 2 days has ripped their chassis's to pieces.
    The Ford crews tell me that about 60% of the convoy or about 20 4WD's have caught up and that they did in fact avoid the log jam and crossed the river about 400 metres south of the dam.

    I find my spare Klim riding pants, dump my semi wet clothes , change my oil, re-kit out my Cameklbak for todays ride and then rush around town trying to find an 18' tube. I find one and its changed out in what seems like an eternity.

    By the time I'm organised and back at the hotel the 4x4's and Didi and the other guys are leaving ! Bloody hell.

    We fill up with gas at the edge of town and then the ashphalt ends.

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    10 minutes on the dirt and Rudy who's riding point has a head on collision with a guy on a moped at a corner in the trail. Initially it doesn't look good, but both of them are fairly OK and theres only a bit of damage to the other guys bike. We send Rudy away and negotiate a settlement of about 10 bucks with the guy. Lucky. Real lucky.

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    I don't believe it. i get another f#$%ing puncture !!:dog

    Sovan stays with me and we get it fixed.

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    I ride quite a bit faster on the Berg than he can on the XR200 so I'm soon alone on the trail. Its a beautiful ride as dusk approaches.

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    Meanwhile the other 3 guys are riding an hour or so ahead of us.

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    They are at Base Camp 4 relaxing whilst Sovan and I are still out on the trail.

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    The further I ride along this road the thicker the tree cover becomes. I'm heading into a National Park area but even here there is still "sustainable logging" taking place as I can see from the logging trucks i see on the way. Its real bullshit.

    Its soon completly dark. My GPS is still playing silly buggers and I suspect it got damaged when it fell off the bike 2 days ago.

    I ride and ride on into the dark. I start watching my odometer and I see that I've gone 15 kilometres without seeing anybody or anything. My fuel light comes on and I start trying to remember how many kilometres I get on reserve. I can't.

    I stop. My GPS has given up and after the past 2 days I can really do without this situation. I realise I'm in the middle of nowhere, in the dark, with no food and very little water, alone and lost. Once again the adrenalin is flowing.

    500 metres back there was a huge earthmover on the side of the trail. I guess I could sleep in that if worse came to worse. I remember seeing what I thought were candle lights on the left side of the trail about 12km back. Those were the only lights I recall seeing. I had thought it was a village hut but maybe I was wrong ?
    I consider to ride on for another 5 kilometres, but decide to turn back. 12km back I roll into BC4 situated about 500 metres off the main trail. Crikey I'm relieved to see everybody. Sovan has just arrived himself. Apparently quite a few jeeps have also missed the camp, but not so many decided to drive 15km on past down the road !

    This journey just does not ease up.
  14. Kuhl

    Kuhl Adventurer

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    :clap:clap:clap

    Great thread brother!!!
  15. secondratemime

    secondratemime Adventurer

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    Bournemouth
    Awesome ride dude. Its funny to see the bikes lightly scampering over any and every obstacle and the 4WDs just tearing the jungle apart to get through. Its enough incentive to stay in front of them, because i bet it'd be unridable if they got infront!

    This looks like one hell of an adventure though, do the organisers have a website?

    James
  16. overlandr

    overlandr Dystopist

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    Interesting part of SE Asia.
  17. advridgerunner

    advridgerunner RESIST WE MUCH !

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    DAMN,
    just DAMN.

    this IS a ride report like no other....:bow :bow :bow
  18. 35xj

    35xj Long timer

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    more, please!
  19. Geek

    Geek oot & aboot

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  20. KTMInduro

    KTMInduro Off Road Montster Supporter

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    May 31, 2005
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    Bali, Indonesia
    Shannon was in a Polaris UTV. He's pretty well know in the UTV /ATV scene in Utah I think. A good bloke and partial to Single Malt also.

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