Tuesday, June 10, 2014

Travelogue: NTU ODAC Trek Recce (Cave-tubing & Prambanan Temple)

Photo credits to Zul.

Day 6 (Cave-tubing & Prambanan Temple):

We set off at about 8am for Gua Pindul, cave tubing. First time trying this out so I was actually quite excited for it! After putting on our life jackets and changing into the rubber shoes they provided, we were transported by a lorry to the cave. On the way, they were trying out Choong's monopod.

And here is how that turned out.

Photo credits to Choong.

So after a short briefing, we went into the water. We just sat on the tube and went into the cave in a line, holding on to each other's tube.

Saw lots of bats and rocks formation in the cave but other than that, it wasn't anything special to be honest.

We were transported to another part of the river(?) which had cliff-jumping along the way.

 Photo credits to Zul.

 Photo credits to Zul.

Photo credits to Zul.

So some of them did the jump. Don't think my faint heart could take the fall so didn't attempt it. Hahaha.

It was just chilling in the waters on such a hot day.

After washing up at the nearby toilet after cave-tubing, we went to a restaurant near the temple to have our lunch/dinner. It was already 5pm when we were done with eating and the sun was about to set. So we went into the temple to catch the sunset.

Even though we all wore long pants, they still require us to wear the sarong. Probably cause we're foreigners? Everyone had to wear it, including the guys. Too cute. Hahaha.

The temple closes at 6pm, so we only spent about an hour or so in the temple taking photos. While leaving the temple, we chanced upon a shooting star! It was my very first encounter so I was really stunned! Didn't know what was that bright thing that "dropped" from the sky until someone said that it was a shooting star. Hahaha. Really pleasant surprise I had that night!

Next we stopped by the hotel for a quick while before heading to the night market and a bar to chill. Wasn't a very pleasant experience for me at the bar though. Their bar is definitely different from bars in SG. Not the kind that I'd visit again. Went back to the hostel at around 12am and packed our stuff before heading to bed at around 2 plus 3am. Our flight was around 7am so we had to be at the airport at around 5. Spent the rest of the time in a cafe at the airport just chilling before we went into the waiting area to board the plane. Took AirAsia for the flight back. Pretty much slept the whole journey back to SG. Haha.

Post-trip reflections:

This was my second trek so far (first was the Berkelah Subcom trip last September). And technically, my first climb with only 7rek com members (during Berkelah trip we had many seniors with us and helping us along the way). I went there with the mentality of " I'm climbing this volcano to get a photo of the sunrise." But after this trip, I realised it wasn't only for the view/photos. Those photos mean nothing to anyone else who hasn't climbed that mountain. At the end of the day, I climbed for the company. I climbed to challenge myself. Didn't manage to make it up to Mt. Merbabu summit, but it just gave me a reason to be back again. Probably gonna attempt a 2 day hike instead of the 6 hour one that we did during this trip. & the next time, I'll be more prepared, definitely.

During the first climb, I honestly thought to myself, why did I even put myself through this. What was I trying to achieve through this climb? At that time because I wanted to get that perfect photo and to see that magnificent sunrise/view. But now I have a different perspective. I really regret not being able to make it for the previous 2 recce trips. But at least I made it for this trip. Every climb is a different experience. Next time, it might not be with the same people (& it's most likely so), but I really thank everyone for making this experience so unforgettable for me. Too many people & too long for a thank-you-speech here, so I'll do it personally instead. 7rek com + our two seniors (Ryan & Jinhao) FTW!

A word to sum up this entire trip: Serendipity.

Read more about my trip to Mt. Welirang, Mt. Bromo and Mt. Merbabu as well!

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