4 hikers to attempt 7-summit challenge up Mt Santubong for a good cause

Vong (seated second left) showing the summit trails to Au (seated left), while others look on.

By Wilfred Pilo

KUCHING, Oct 19: Four local hikers who adore nature and challenging trails will attempt a never-done-before charity hike up the legendary Mount Santubong for the Malaysia Nature Society (MNS).

To be led by Ian Vong Ka Fatt, the others taking up this challenge from Oct 27-28 are experienced hikers Patrick Mat, Fazilah Shahren and Kim Ting Ting.

Vong said they would climb Summit 1 to Summit 7 and trek along the mountain range till the end of the peninsula, where the Tanjung Sipang Lighthouse stands. They will get back to Camp Permai through the West Coast.

“This challenge has never been done before, and it will take 36 to 40 hours to complete. The estimated length of the trail is 40km. I will be leading the team, and we will hike as a team to complete the challenge,” he told a press conference here today.

Vong revealed that Mt Santubong was one of his favourite places to hike. From August last year till July this year, he had trekked and climbed the mountain 45 times in order to explore the entire mountain range.

Map showing the trail to the seven summits at Mt Santubong, which the four hikers will be attempting.

“The famous Mt Santubong Summit 1 (810m) is the prime attraction for both local and foreign trekkers. If you were to view from the side of the mountain, there are altogether seven summits, with elevation ranging from 450m to 850m above sea level.

“I love nature and I would like to do something meaningful by raising funds for the environment. The proceed from this challenge will be given to Malaysia Nature Society,” he said.

Vong reckoned that if everyone participated and contribute a little, then the environment can be saved.

“The ultimate goal is to protect and conserve our natural heritage for the benefit and appreciation of all Malaysians. Save Mother Nature and heal the world before it is too late. Do play your part to save endangered species and their habitats,” he appealed.

Vong highlighted that he would also like to promote the importance of hiking etiquette: `Leave no trace but footprints, take nothing but pictures, kill nothing but time’

Meanwhile, MNS Kuching Branch chairperson Rose Au Nyat Jun, who was also present, echoed that hiking could promote the appreciation of nature, which would eventually lead to the protection and conservation of hiking sites.

She noted that Vong had hiked Mt Santubong so many times that he had become very protective of it.

Also present at the press conference was BJV Hiking Club president Chai Ken Hua. — DayakDaily