Updated: Apr 4
50 minutes to the north, out of Kuala Lumpur, a scenic drive through the picturesque Pertak Reservior 2002, the trailhead of this hike lies along with Kuala Kubu Baru, trunk route to Frasers Hill.
Essentially 'Bukit' in the Malay language would mean hill. But do not be deceived by the name as this leisure hike is in fact a beast.
Standing at 1050m Bukit Kutu involves some serious climbing and clambering 65% of the journey! The peak of the mountain consists of 3 humongous boulders, very narrow and high and a long way to fall if you lose your footing, so BEWARE! Otherwise, you could frolic and explore the ruins of this once sanatorium of the British officers during the Colonial days.
Starting point: Waterfall carpark Kampung Pertak
Hike Duration: Allow around 7 hours from the entrance of the jungle, 14km to/fro
End Hike: It is a backtrack
Hike Difficulty: 3.5/5
Break it into 3 parts, part 1, is rather flat, part 2 & 3 involves some climbing and clambering!
Scenery Rewards: 4/5
PERMIT IS NEEDED, please apply before hand at PEJABAT DAERAH HULU SELANGOR
(under infor awam> gerbang perkhidmatan awam> muat turun> permit)
Note: Rivers are generally calm but recently due to extreme rainfall, the rivers can swell up to chest height! Always check the wether forecast especially when it involves river crossing!
What to bring
1. Basic first aid stuff
2. Walking stick
3. Raincoat and Poncho ( you will be able to find them at any convenience store or Daiso shops for about RM6.00)
4. Head-Torch, if you start before 7am
5. At least 3l of water, pack lunch, snack
6. Change of clothes, especially if you want to refresh yourself by the waterfalls at the end of the hike.
7. Good pair of hiking shoes is absolutely necessary
9. Insect repellant
10. Check the weather forecast
11. A GOOD ADVENTURE SPIRIT
....Strangler fig winds themselves around host tree and eventually killing it
Some Dipterocarp trees, family of hardwood that you will see along the trail. Meranti, Palau, Kapur, Cengal and Keruing among them. They form a large proportion of the rainforest canopy in Peninsular Malaysia.
The original path from Kuala Kubu has long been reclaimed by the jungle. The present trial starts from Kampung Pertak, an Orang Asli settlement at the bank of the Pertak river.
Alternatively there is another Legenda Trail, or the Old Colonial trail from Ampang Pecah. (Click Here for Trans Bukit Kutu via Old Colonial Trail)
The path approaches the hill from the opposite side, i.e. from the north and east.
Once past the Orang Asli houses, the small road eventually becomes a gravel track and ends at the bank of Sungai Pertak.
We parked our car at the open space and there was a care-taker who collected RM1 per person! We geared up, did some stretching and soon we were on our way!
Easy part of the hike, through a rather flat gravel path. We crossed the 1st suspension bridge entering into the reserve jungle. After about 200m the 2nd bridge approached. It was twisted & broken, but tentatively in passable condition.
Approximately after 200m, you will come to, the 3rd stream crossing, no bridge! The river runs to knee depths during the dry season, I can imagine it can easily go up to the waist depths in rainy season!
This is the pleasant part of the trail will therapeutic murmurs from the Pertak rives, crackling sound of the bamboo, echos from the calling from a lost primate....etc, you get the idea!
NOTE: You could wear your sandals and only after the 3rd river crossing change to your hiking boots. Going barefoot means wading over some sharp rocks in the river!
PART 2: Keep Clean to Batu Tedung
The 2nd part of the trail is when the climb begins. Cross these rickety logs and remember to take your trash home sign...... from here comes the ascend!
There is a whole session of rope climb and some root & rock assist ascend that will lead you up to this MOTHER of a BOULDER, Batu Tedung. This is a popular checkpoint! Recollect yourself, take a quick snack and muster more energy to conquer Part 3!
Some of the wildflowers and trees you will find on the way.
BUKIT KUTU 1050m
From Batu Tedung to Bukit Kutu is a gruelling 1 half-hour climb. The last part of the climb involves some hoisting up of oneself! My arms are aching, from yesterday!
The final ascend is a good challenge if you take the dirt path otherwise, there is an easier path on the right the will lead you to the same destination!
And once you arrive.....the breathtaking view greets you! The air is relatively cooler and a cool fresh breeze is blowing. A little further on, the peak of Bukit Kutu consists of 3 large boulders that must be climbed using ladders. The view from the top of the rock must be spectacular though we did not get a chance to climb up as it was packed with hikers who would not come down!
Be mindful and not hog the rock coz it is everyone's rock when you are up there!
The next best thing to do is to rest and relax and explore the ruins of the 2nd bungalow and take a few shots of that victory hike! YEEEAH 1050m, we MADE IT!
On a clear day, you could see the Titiwangsa mountain range at the backdrop. Totally insta worthy! #Bukitkutu
Some history about the 1920 bungalow
Bukit Kutu, formerly known as Treacher's Hill is an abandoned colonial hill station just upstream of the original Kuala Kubu town. There used to be a hill station founded in 1893 by William Hood Treacher.
There were supposedly two bungalows at the top which functioned as a health retreat for the British administrators. A bridle path (horse or donkey trail) connected it to the old Kuala Kubu town. During the Japanese invasion in 1942, the British army supposedly destroyed the bungalows as they retreated ahead of the advancing Japanese forces
For more intimate storytelling of the history of the bungalow please check out this page.
It took us about 2.5 hours to descend. Refresh ourselves at the river and head for the big meal! The 12km hike is indeed an appetite whetter!
Flora and Fauna
Along the first half of the hike, we could hear the call of the Great Argus Bird, it is a distinct call that goes, kowwww-wooow.
Some hikers have picked up the feathers of the Great Argus Bird, Kuang Raya in Malay around the vicinity. This bird is the epitome of Malay folklore and culture and is an protected species in Malaysia!
This is a rather popular hike among the hiker's fraternity, escaping the daily grind, especially during weekends. The best way to escape congestion on the trail is to start early!
A permit is required for hikers to ascend the hill. I joined the hike together with Trailblazerhikingclub who took care of the paperwork with some other well-spirited hikers! However, it would have been perfect if we could pop champagne while cooling off by the river!
Note: Recently due to the tragic events involving landslides in forest reserve areas, the Selangor government has imposed strict measure on one guide per 7 hikers. Do DM me if you are planning to go in a small group for guide information!
The early bird catches the worm, the early worm gets eaten!
After climbing a great hill, one only finds that there are many more hills to climb....Nelson Mandela
Date visited: 1st March 2020