By Nur Firdaus Abdul Rahim
KUALA LUMPUR, June 7 (Bernama) -- For decades, the cool, fresh air in Fraser’s Hill has drawn local and foreign visitors alike in search of a holiday in the beautiful outdoors where flora and fauna still flourish.
Known as the “Little England” of Malaysia, this hill station named after British explorer Louis James Fraser, offers attractions such as buildings featuring colonial architecture, rich bird life which draws enthusiasts from overseas, and nature trails.
In recent times, hiking and climbing enthusiasts from the Klang Valley have often been frequenting the hill station’s trails.
There are eight trails which cater to different levels of physical and mental endurance - the Pine Tree Trail (5.5km), Maxwell Trail (1.8km), Bishop Trail (1.5km), Rompin Trail (500 metres), Kindersley Trail (300 metres), Hemmant Trail (1km), Abu Suradi Trail (500 metres) and the Mager Trail (350 metres).
For those in search of something more challenging, there are also the Twin Peak Hill and Mount Semangkok.
Nik Musfirah Filzah Nik Man, 28, an avid climber from Sentul, completed the Pine Tree Trail with some 100 other climbers during the recent centennial celebrations of the founding of Fraser’s Hill.
Acknowledging that the trail was no walk in the park, the young nurse who took up climbing four years ago, said strong arms were needed when using ropes to make steep ascents before reaching the Pine Tree summit which is situated at 1,448 metres above sea level.
“It gives me a sense of accomplishment to go walking and climbing, and it’s convenient that Fraser’s is located close to Kuala Lumpur,” she said.
Among Nik Musfirah’s climbing achievements are reaching the Annapurna Base Camp, Nepal, two years ago, scaling Mount Pulag in the Philippines and Mount Talang in Sumatera, Indonesia.
For housewife Suhailah Abdul Rahim, 44, from Shah Alam, who has explored the Abu Suradi trail with her family over weekends, Fraser’s Hill is an ideal leisure location for those in search of short holidays and a healthy lifestyle.
“It is only a two-hour drive and we can make it a day trip or a one-nighter,” she said.
Pahang Special Tactical Operations and Rescue Team of Malaysia (STORM) head Muhamad Haziq Hazmi advised that the most important safety precaution which nature lovers should take, is to move in groups and always be paired.
“Avoid paths which have no signs of use by others,” he said, adding that those staying in hotels should inform the management of their plans, while those not staying overnight should inform the police.
“Keep contact numbers of the police and rescue services in case of emergencies as this will help speed up potential search and rescue operations,” he said