Gunung Brinchang (Mount Brinchang) is located in the Cameron Highlands and it is classified as the highest mountain in peninsula Malaysia accessible by road and stands at 2,032 meters (6,667ft) above sea level. Gunung Brinchang is also the second highest mountain in Cameron Highlands. Taking the road up is no challenge so the obvious route to the top is to hike through the jungle which I would personally consider very different compared to other hikes I have been to.
The hike itself is considered easy and it takes only about an hour plus to reach the peak. However this is a trail that you can go slow and really enjoy the change from the normal jungle terrain to the mossy jungle atmosphere.
The trail starts at a nearby farm just off the main road. There are signboards from the farm area so don’t worry you wont end up in a cabbage plantation by mistake. The trail as you can see starts very wide, as its used by the local farmers to transport their crop.
However the road soon becomes a small jungle trail and this is where the real hiking begins. The trek is quite dry at the beginning however it does become very damp and muddy about half way through the trail.
If I remember correctly, you will start to notice the abundance of moss on the roots and tree trunks about 20 minutes into the hike. Also a the temperature cool temperature was certainly a good change from hot and humid conditions normally experienced on other mountains which I’ve hiked.
This moist tropical evergreen forest is also a rich repository for a unique set of montane creatures, encompassing insects, snakes, frogs, birds and mammals. However I did only manage to get a close encounter with one particular insect which was very intriguing indeed as its shape was mimicking a dried leaf.
We soon came to a very odd looking tree which of course anyone who had watched or read Lord Of The Rings would be quick to associate it with a Tree Ent. At the root it even looks like a foot standing on the ground. I can really relate how Tolken manged to stir up the idea of tree Ent.
At some points during the hike, the ground started to be relatively wet and muddy. So a word of advice for anyone who wishes to venture into the mossy forest, come prepared with boots or have a pair of extra shoes for after the trek.
Before reaching the peak there are a few viewpoints where the forest opens up and gives a great view of the surrounding mountain range. It is a great place for taking photos, though it could be considered a bit of a squeeze to have a group photo at this point. Just be careful not to fall off the cliff.
Upon reaching the peak of Gunung Brinchang (Mount Brinchang) a fence will emerge surrounding the telecommunication towers. Perhaps not the most rewarding ending for a climb up a mountain however there is an observation tower where a better view of the surrounding can be seen.
The view from the observation tower as the clouds slowly drifts away from Gunung Irau(Mount Irau), The tallest mountain in Cameron Highland. It might look near however it is another 3-4 hours of hiking from the peak of Gunung Brinchang.
From this point there are 2 choices to decent back to the starting point. The first is going back through the same way which will only take about an hour or less and the second is to walk down the road, however bare in mind the road is the long way down. As the road twists and turns around the mountain, it is a 11km walk down to Brinchang town.
There is a however a plus point in taking the long way down as you get to walk through the scenic BOH tea plantation which is the largest manufacturer of black tea in Malaysia. The way the tea plants are planted on the slope of the hills are very unique indeed.
Map below shows the starting point of the N0. 1 trail for Gunung Brinchang. Take the junction straight after the abandoned military camp and you will reach a vegetable farm, where you can park the car and start hiking.
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