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Bukit RAKA 579m, perilous rope trail hike with rewarding views and adrenaline fuelled!

Updated: Nov 8, 2023


Bukit Raka in Bentong an open air jungle gym with many rope climbs, hanging cliffs and falling projectile from broken rocks beckons the daring and more adventurous hiker! Be warned that this is not the regular undulating hike but one that is more vertically demanding and thrilling. This hike surely promises a lot of altitude for the money! (permit and guide)

Bentong, about an hour's away from Kuala Lumpur is a gem nestle in lush greenery and rolling hills. It is renowned for it's thorny fruit, a particular type of ginger and delicious tou foo! This hike can be completed by morning and you could spend the afternoon exploring the rustic charms of Bentong town before heading back!


Starting point: Housing area

Hike Duration: Allow around 5hours to 6 hours

End Hike: Backtrack or Trail A to B or Trail B to A

Distance : 5km

Hike Difficulty: the climb on ropes

Scenery Rewards: views of Bentong, Kelau Dam, Genting Highlands, and the sea of clouds if lucky!

PERMIT AND GUIDE is required (max 7 hikers per guide) you can apply permits on line through e-ECOPARK


Note: Safety measures should be in placed, such as save distance between hikes due to risk of falling rocks. Better if you have helmet protection! In 2018, there was a falling rock incident that resulted in death of a hiker in Bukit Raka.



What to bring

1. Basic first aid stuff such as disinfectant, ankle guard in case you sprain your ankle, band-aid.

2. GLOVES, as there are many ropes! Avoid rope burnt with bare hands!

3. Raincoat and Poncho

4. At least 1l of water, snack!

5. Good pair of hiking shoes

7. Check the weather forecast

8. Cap ( the is an uncovered part before you enter the forest)

9. Helmut if you have!

10. There were no leeches, but Soffel mosquito spray works efficiently (click here)


Note: the 4x4 dirt road that leads to the jungle has no canopy cover!



Start Hike


We gathered at 810am at the foot hills of Bukit Raka. The summit of Bukit Raka can be clearly seen with the middle parts shrouded in the morning mist from the trailhead! There are 2 trails you could take to reach the peak. Trail A, is the notorious rope climb and B, the more gentle but picturesque route.

The craggy summit of Bukit Raka

We started the hike meandering through the undulating 4x4 dirt road towards the swift farm and durian orchard. There was a heard of dogs angrily barking at us as we trekked past the swift farm, before reaching the huge BUKIT RAKA entrance sign area. There were 2 dogs and then, more came barking ferociously at us..... but like grandma always say, stay calm and never look them in the eye or run!

TRAIL A


We crossed through a swathe of wooded area from the Bukit Raka entrance area and rejoined the the 4x4 route to finally reach the trailhead.

Very quickly at the start of Trail A, a rope hang loosely to aid hikers up the very steep slope up the trail. It's just a prelude to bigger things to come. Those who opt for less adrenaline route can ascend and descend from Trail B.


Trail A is a series of rope hikes on craggy, slippery, boulders!

In total, Trail A is about 1.8km long, and about 1km is steep and demanding climbs! Just after around 10 minutes from the first rope, you will come face to face with a sheer cliff at 75angle towering 5meters above you. There is rope that is tightly fasten from the roots of the trees. But what if root breaks!! The foothold on the boulder was sketchy and big enough to only fit a baby's foot, we had no choice but to hold on to the ropes for dear lives.

The first series of rope climb became increasingly technical as we reached closer to the summit.


50m clamber and rope puling at parts up the boulder that separates sheer cliffs

After the formidable climb, the trail eases to an ascending climb toward the junction of Trail A and Trail B.

There is no more rope climb from here but it is an ascending hike straight to the top. The terrain is rocky but littered with dried leaves and can be slippery, especially on the way down. The steepness of the trail is tough but you'll be distracted with the breathtaking surrounding views! Towards east, Kelau dam is clearly visible and as you head to the summit, Bentong town is beneath you and on a lucky day Genting Highlands at the west!

Bukit Raka 579m may not be a huge mountain but the climb is thrilling and exhilarating!

We spend some time admiring the panoramic view on the peak and feeling gratified with the newly bagged summit in 2023!


At the peak, there were noticeably few "pokok kelat gelam" red tree that is sticking red and gives a red hue around the area! You will be able to find them in Bukit Changkat Asa in Ulu Bernam, Bukit Batu Sawa in Jelebu and in Bukit Merah in Jerantut!


Pokok Kelat Gelam mostly found on top of the peak, in most cases!

Trail B


We descended and reached the junction. Dare devils have a choice to take Trail A to descend or the boring but more scenic Trail B back. Trail B is a rather newly opened trail with more flat terrain, but slightly further, 2.5km.

If this is your first time at Bukit Raka, I would suggest Trail B. It might not be as challenging but there are a number of ropes and big rocky cliffs on the way down that is equally demanding!


Trail B has it's share of rope climb

We took around 1 hour to descent and came across few gigantic "meranti" trees that were spared the loggers wrath! Most old timber here has been logged off for orchards for the very profitable king of fruit tree!

Trail B route traverses the ridge, on the saddle of Bukit Raka before it heads downhill. #bukitrakabentong


 

Bentong


A rewarding meal after a hike is mandatory! If you are looking for a hearty a la carte meal, Dragon Phoenix serves pretty decent food. (non halal)

If you arrive in the morning and would like some nasi lemak, you can head to Kow Po ice cream, they serve cendol and ABC too!

Bentong is also famous for their tou fo and bean curd custard. #bentong


Reflections


These days all hikes in Pahang is requires a guide and permit. This may be a short hike but you'll get a huge bang of thrill clambering and climbing up the ropes! More thrilling if you do the descent on Trail A too! All of us completed the hike feeling like spiderman!


If you suffer from acrophobia perhaps Trail B would be a better option! This climb draws parallels with Gunung Ledang, only 10 times more thrilling, not the distance but the climb! Among us 2 of our friends who came unaware about the hike almost gave up half way. There were few falling rocks on the way up, some, hurtling at speed! Always remember to take precaution. The trail is relatively well taken care off, and ropes were sturdy and well fasten on the big trees and roots!


Thank you guys for the amazing climb and sharing adventure and moment!




Date visited: 22nd October 2023











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