Travel Features > Up the Ulu
Day 6 - Long San to Akah River Camp Site
© Wayne Tarman, 1998
We spent a relaxing day by the river having a picnic lunch and
swimming in the cool waters. Although the plan was to pitch camp
by the river, most people choose to spend the night at the logging
camp. I was all set to sleep at the timber camp but thankfully
Roland persuaded me to join him and his brother Xavier and camp
by the river. So, as the rest of the group tucked into barbecued
wild boar and Johnnie Walker in the scruffy compound of the logging
camp, three mad Englishmen went about setting up camp in the valley
We pitched camp by the river, close to a small wooden house inhabited by a an extended family. In my broken Malay I told the family not to worry if they heard noises by the river, it's not a hantu (ghost) but three mad white men trying to light a fire. They burst into laughter and then the man of the house came out to show us a small spring, the best of source of fresh water, and offer us some firewood from his compound. He then followed us to our camp site to check on our progress.
With the beers chilling in the river, the fire on the go and the hammocks all set up, it was time to prepare dinner. I am not a fan of instant noodles but that night I had one of the best meals ever, the taste of packet noodles with tinned mushrooms and luncheon meat was undoubtedly enhanced by the sense of achievement of setting up the camp and the beautiful surroundings of the riverside location. Stuffed full of food we hit the sack. After nearly falling out of my cheap hammock a couple of times, I decided that I wasn't tired and moved my blanket and mosquito net to a new spot near the campfire. As Roland and Xavier slept I spent the next couple of hours collecting firewood and building a huge fire. I sat around staring at the fire and the stars, sipping a warm can of Carlsberg, listening to the sounds of the forest, totally at peace with the world.