Monday, November 14, 2011

Jeram Penitih

As I have been travelling quite regularly to the East Coast, I decided to make quick stop at Jeram Penitih which was first explored by our Godfather Of Waterfalls, Mr Jan Stuivenberg.
Using Jan's info as a guide, I also obtained info from and called up the number to ask for general directions since it's a kampung road. Iinitially just wanted to meet up with the guide and have him point out to me the direction but he vehemently insisted that if I went on my own, I would not find the falls. Sigh, little did he know, he was talking to Malaysia's No.3 ranking waterfall hunter. When I asked for payment, he said I could give him any amount I liked but usually he charges RM180 per person. Sigh, again, little did he know, I have a waterfall named after me.

We went in 2 cars as he has his plantation and fish farm inside. At the beginning of the road going into the plantation, I suddenly braked because the road ahead was filled with huge potholes. To those who has driven into Lata Kijang, the road leading into Jeram Penitih is 10 times worst and I've driven a couple of times into Lata Kijang with my Proton Boneshaker. So , go figure.

Like Jan's picture depicts, you can see the border between palm oil plantation and pure virgin jungle. The fine line between safety and lawlessness. Halfway in the jungle, the guide stopped his car and got out to show me tapir footprints. I'm not an expert in tapirs so I just accepted what he said and truth be told, I got a little excited.

We stopped and crossed the stream. Super duper clear. Like Ayer Hitam kind of clarity.

Along the way, he pointed out to numerous herbs and even memorized their scientific names. Very impressed. My initial token of payment went from RM30 to RM50 now. He also showed me that if someone is lost, they should use the back of a parang and knock on the giant tree root and when he did so, the sound resonated throughout the whole jungle. He said this is the way to be found. RM70 now. Right before we reached the first fall, he asked me to find my bearings - North, South, etc. I couldn't tell because the sun was covered by the canopy above. He said all I have to do is ask the trees. Just ask the trees. So we went closer to one tree and he gestured me to come to the other side. I could see moss growing only on one side and the other side had no moss whatsoever. He explained that the side that had no moss is the side where the sun shines, therefore, that is your East. Wow...increased to RM120.
First Fall

The first fall was not tall nor impressive but the the water was magnificently clear. The pool could fit at least 4 people and it was deep too. From the starting point to the first fall took half an hour.
First Fall

If the guide did not stop every 5 minutes to inform me that a labisa pumila could enhance the penile function, we would have made it in 10 minutes.
Kacip fatima?

OUr journey continued to the 2nd level which was a cascade and reached the 3rd level in 5 minutes. The 3rd level was more impressive. Slightly higher falls but no pool.

According to the guide, there are probably 30 more falls above but level 5 was the limit. I wanted to continue but he said it may take some time and looking at my schedule, I agreed and we turned back. On the way, he showed me his fish farm and how he would like to turn it into a homestay complete with fishing, waterfall and jungle trekking. Currently, his fish ponds and shack are extremely basic but he has already hired 3 security guards

to protect his property. I gave him a few advice like to add in night walk services, etc and wished him luck. He sent me back to my car and I bid him adieu. All in all, it was a very informative trek seeing that I always trek alone and he went out of his way to accomodate me. At the end, I gave him RM100 for his effort.