Gunung Mulu National Park: Big caves and karst formations in an equatorial rainforest! Luckily, both Stephen and the friendly receptionist were willing to change some plans, so that I got a lot of great activities fit into my days in Mulu. Thanks to both! We wasted no time and went directly to the Paku Waterfall. A nice jungle walk: Big trees, vines, bromeliads and a cold swim under the waterfall. Good start!
The next day we went off to climb the Pinnacles. On the way we stopped in a village of the natives. Which lived nomadic in and from the jungle without destroying it until they got proselytized. Their language also had no words for “possession” and “war”… Next stop was at Wind and Clearwater Cave, two big caves with impressive stalagmites and stalactites (see the pics for more) before we after a short hike finally arrived at Camp 5.
From where we started the climb to the Pinnacles early the next morning. The trail is only 2,4 km long, but it’s 1200 meter up. The last section is nearly vertical. However, we all made it up to the top. Soaked with sweat. But were rewarded with an awesome view over the Pinnacles: Razor sharp spikes that loom into the sky out of the surrounding jungle!
On the way down I took my time to enjoy the fauna and flora. And saw a Bornean forest dragon. After arriving back at Camp 5 in record time, we took a refreshing swim, played Frisbee, and cards. Thanks to Jamie, João, and Stephen for being such great Pinnacles conquerors and company! Next day, it was an easy walk back and after the boat ride we filled up lost calories with chocolate cake and vanilla ice cream. Mhmmm.
You think, that’s awesome? I got even better. Stephen and I joined a tour to the Garden of Eden the next day. First stop was Lang Cave with incredible rock formations.
Then we entered Deer Cave, which is home to three million wrinkle lipped bats. After successfully passing under them without getting a free Guano shower, we got a look at Adam’s and Eve’s shower. A totally natural rock structure from which water is dripping down like in a big rain shower. A ray of light!
And then, we got the first glimpse of the Garden of Eden, a secluded green oasis shining in the sunlight. It was formed, when a big part of Deer Cave collapsed. Following the Eden River we arrived at a beautiful waterfall. And jumped in! Swimming in the pool was one of these magic moments: Being totally in the present. Feeling only happiness. Laughing a joyful laugh from deep inside the heart. Like an innocent child. Thanks Stephen for joining the jump and the laughter! It would have been far less fun without you!
Seeing the top of the waterfall from below was too tempting. And I did not even have to convince Stephen. All it needed was a short question. Yeah! That’s how I like it! Awesome! I was tempted to jump down from the top, but I guess my travel insurance would not have covered for the results… so we climbed down again (and luckily did not fall :-)
Back at the entrance of Deer Cave, we waited for the Bat Exodus. At dawn, the bats fly out of the cave to hunt their dinner (maybe the reason why their have been very few mosquitoes in Mulu). Not one by one. Thousands spirals out together. Big black snakes meander over the sky. One snake after the other. Millions of millions of bats. With my mouth wide open I watched this magical spectacle. Totally out of this world! It does not get any better!