Sunday, February 12, 2006

The Hulu Langat weekend adventure..

The last time I rode my bike was about almost two weeks ago, and that it was also a fairly short ride, about 25km or so. So I decided to ride today and get my ass moving, and I also need to lose some weight from CNY eating!!!

This time, instead of starting from Batu 14, Hulu Langat, I decided on starting from the Sg. Tekala rest stop instead, since I live nearer towards Semenyih side. I got to Sg. Tekala, and parked my car, took out my bike and geared up. There were several cyclists there taking a break. I bid my hellos to them and headed off left towards Nirvana Memorial park and double back for a 6km flat warm-up.

Hills.. hills.. hills!!

After about a kilometre or so is the dreaded 500m steep uphill from the power controller (I think it's a power controller station, but I'm not sure, as I'm usually to huff-n-puff to notice as I'm trying to climb!). After making thru that one, I passed the lake and the dam and a couple of uphills until I reached the Kota Klawang-Batu 18 junction. I decided to try going up to Kota Klawang, but after finding out it's another crazy uphill, I decided against going up yet. So I reversed and rested at the junction.

Flat number one..

Before I knew it, I noticed my rear tyre was flat! BUGGER! So I had to sit down and replace the tube. As usual, it's caused by some small piece of gravel that got through the tyre. While I was doing that, 3 weekend riders (from PCC) passed me by, and stopped by to see if I was okay.

During that short period, I think I forgot how to change a flat! I didn't know why I had some difficulty in doing it... didn't do it for so long. Anyway, those guys kept me company until I managed to change the tube. I also used up one CO2 cartridge to pump air quickly into the tyre.

Flat number two..

As it was getting warmer, I decided on the easier route option. I decided to go into Sg. Lui instead and then turn back to go back to Sg. Tekala. After about 6km I turned back (getting too much into the sun wasn't a pleasant idea at the time, and I was alone, too!), and the next thing I knew, I had another FLAT! ^%(&$#*!!! I was lucky in one way that, just a few metres where I alighted from my bike, was a small little sundry shop with shaded seating table area! So I walked there, said hi to the nice Malay lady who owned the shop, and asked if I could sit and replace my tyre tubes. She said OK, so I did. Her kids were around watching me with interest while I was replacing those tubes.

By the way, I wasted one Vittoria tube on the first flat, and what a waste it was. It's slightly more expensive than the Taiwan-made tube, and it was supposed to be a little tougher. But I checked the TYRE itself, I found that there are several spots where gravel, and maybe glass might have embedded itself in the tyre's outer layer. Looks like I might have to get new tyres too.. bugger.

I decided against using the CO2 as I didn't want to waste it in this particular instance. I also think I may have overpumped the tyre the first time with too much pressure, maybe? So I used the handpump to try to pump it to whatever pressure my arms could take! It's one thing to pump tyres with floor pumps, it's another with handpumps! Anyway, after I was done with changing tubes, I "donated" my used tyre to the Malay kid who was fascinated with it.. hehehehe. I hastily went on my way (it was getting a fair bit sunny) and prayed that my tyre will not give out halfway!

Hot! Hot! Hot!

Wow, it was really sunny, and with no surprise, it was 11-something in the morning. I went back the same way I came, to head back to Sg. Tekala. Thankfully, the hills heading that direction weren't as tough. The first long uphill I negotiated earlier when I started, becomes a really nice downhill, and I was having a ball of a time just cruising down that hill at 60km/h!

When I got back to the Sg. Tekala parking area, the small stalls selling food and drinks were already opened, welcoming weekend visitors to its lovely, but terribly crowded waterfalls. Being grateful the (Wo)Man Upstairs, I packed my bike in the car, and got myself a nice coconut drink, water, and fruits to consume as after-workout replenishment!

Good workout!

I guess I had a good workout. It wasn't as long as I intended, but I guess it can't be helped. It's no fun getting flats during rides like this. Not to mention blowing cash on tyres and tubes. Hopefully in my next Hulu Langat weekend ride, I could cover a little more distance, and also explore the Kuala Klawang side. Seems quite tempting to check out!

Till the next ride!

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