Review: Bike Servicing in Penang – Part 3

On last weekend, I took my front MTB wheel for trueing at Giant Prima Tanjung. I left my wheel over night as they were shorthanded and I got it back the next day. I was surprised that he charged me MYR10 only which normally is MYR30. He charged me less was because the wheel is not far off aligned. Took it for a ride the next day and he surely fixed the problem I had. Great job and good service.

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Trail: Bukit Gambir

This is an easy and very short trail for those of you who are running against time. From top to bottom is only 6.5km and can complete within 40mins.

It is very easy ride up as the trail is wide and it is used by construction trucks. And, the climb is not tough too. Coming down may be slide challenge as they have laid small rocks on top of the trail. If you have your tires set to wide range, it should be able to control well. There is just a short distance of the trail which one may find some difficult to climb. It is very narrow, about 20° gradients and next to a cliff.

Getting into the trail is to go thru Ashley Green housing estate in Bukit Gambir. I don’t think anyone will get lost here as you just have to go straight with just 1 or 2 turns. Just follow the pictures below for the direction and use the wide path.

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Just going straight until you hit the cemented road and a great view.

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Just go a little bit further and there is a small praying hut on your right hand side, then turn into another small trail as shown on the left picture here.

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The reward for getting to the top of the hill is this.

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Review: Specialized Hotrock 24 XC – Update

This is just an update from my previous posting of Specialized Hotrock after my daughter has done more rides on it.

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I took her to Pearl Hill for the 1st time couple of weeks ago and she seems to enjoy it very much. It was a 100m climb in 1.7km only, so average gradient is about 4° (at 1 stretch it was about 7° climb). She seems to be managing it quite well for her 1st time. Of course her gear was set to the lowest gear available which was 22-34 setting. She did stop 2 times to rest but I have to admit she is not fittest kid around the block. Great was that she completed the whole ride to the top of the hill.

Coming down was her dream as she had a blast of letting go the brakes. The daddy (me) have to keep remind her to slow down as it was her 1st and I wasn’t sure how well she can handle. She did about 24km/h downhill and she handled it quite well. I believe she would go faster than that if it was not for me.

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Overall, I believe Specialized Hotrock is good enough for kids her age to climb up hill and easy to control during downhill. Below is the total distance and time.

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My next objective is to bring her to cemented trails with uneven roads during her school holiday.

Other post about Hotrock:-

Review: Specialized Hotrock 24 XC

Review: Specialized Hotrock 24 XC – Update

Trail: Adam’s Trail and Lime Farm

Adam

Today, I went back to Sg Ara again as I can’t get enough of it. There were many purposes behind today’s ride. I find that cycling is the best way to let off steam or distress especially riding off road. Because you will need the energy to climb from 1 hill to another and your blood is pump with excitement when going downhill. By the end of the ride, you won’t have much energy left to think about the problems. And, during downhill you don’t have a split second to think about your personal problems as it means live or dead. I went all out today in terms of going uphill or coming down but still not as fast as my previous records I hold on in my Strava.

For the past weekend the weather was not on my side as it was raining nonstop. Today, the weather was exceptionally great as the hour goes by. We started from Indian Temple -> Zig Zag -> Adam -> Proton -> Reverse Carpet -> Carpet -> Reverse Carpet -> lastly Lime Garden. 1st half of the ride, we went back the same route as on last Wednesday and 2nd half was searching for new trails to ride. I believe everyone can get bored with the same route each week like Reverse Carpet, Cherrie Bloosom, Pearl Hill, Penang Hill or round Penang Island.

Adam’s Trail

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Carpet

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I wouldn’t say much on Adam’s trail as you can read from my previous posting. The 2nd half we proceeded to Bali Home and then we took a turn next to the Pak Man’s Trail. It started off with easy going uphill then the road is getting narrower to a single track. We called this place Lime Garden (you probably have guessed it) as it was an orchard full of lime trees. This place was filled with nice aroma from the lime dropping on the floor or drying up. The highest elevation of this place is only 274m which was about 130m climb from the connected hill. If it was not because of many fallen banana trees this would be an easy and nice trail to pedal with gradual increase in gradient. Also, the rain doesn’t help much as the cements were wet and filled with moss (one of our friends fell down twice in Adam’s trail because of moss). Some part of this trail is hard to ride also because of the long grass.

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Coming back down, we used MPPP’s trail and we were letting go of our brakes and let it picked up speed. There was a small group of people shouting at us to go slow as they all got scared when we all zoomed by them. 😛

I will definitely come back here to explore more rideable trails and to let off steam? 🙂

Trail: Adam’s Trail and Bao Lu Song

I am very fortunate to have a friend or 2 who knows pretty much all the trails in Sungai Ara. I was introduced to new trails for my past 2 rides here. It was a great ride and this time is a bit technical than the previous 1. It was a short ride but fun.

Sg Ara

We entered Adam’s Trail thru Zig Zag. I would say the difficulty for this trail is easy to medium. There were some switchback but it gives plenty of room to turn even if you are on a 29er. The ascent and descent is done gradually too, so it is still easy to control. Most of the path is cemented single track but due to lack of trail maintenance, it has became partially off road.

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The last part of our ride was Bao Lu Song. I believe they named this trail from a direct translation of Hokkien dialect. It means Guarantee You Will Like It. Ok, this trail is a bit hard to ride as it has a very narrow cemented track and not level to the side. The balancing skill has to be very good if not, once you drop to the side it is difficult to get back on if you do not have the strength. The worst part was we had to climb up the hill at ~5-10° gradient  and yet balanced on that small slab of cemented block. We climbed up from the Bali Home and down towards where we started. Coming down was a bit challenged as the trail was still that narrow and it was poorly maintained. There were broken cements everywhere and made the trail become rock garden. That was really testing our balancing skills, our fork capability, brakes and tires (wet trail with moss).

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Overall, it was a moderate climb, some technical and balancing skill required. If you can do the Reverse Carpet, this should not be any problem.