Borneo Three Peaks Expedition

Borneo Three Peaks Expedition


From £2,575
Altitude 4,095m Grade: 2B

This great adventure combines the ascent of Mt Mulu Api Pinnacles, Mt Kinabalu and remote Mt Trusmadi with nature, the jungle and flora like entering the world of ‘Lord of the Rings’. It gives the thrills of the world’s highest Via Ferrata from the most beautiful mountain view in Malaysia and visits Turtle Island and the Sepilok Orang Utan Rehabilitation Centre.

Borneo Three Peaks is a unique adventure that is not just your standard Mount Kinabalu (4095m) ascent. The expedition also takes you to the remote parts of Borneo to climb the Mulu Pinnacles and the wild and rarely climbed peak of Mount Trusmadi (2642m), where few tourists venture but from where you get the most spectacular sunrise views back over to Malaysia’s highest peak. You experience a longboat journey, the cave exodus of two million bats as featured in the BBC series Planet Earth. It is just one of many natural wonders to find in this off-the-beaten trail and tropical paradise alongside turtles, orangutans, pitcher plants, flora and fauna of the mossy jungle as an alien world, like entering the world of ‘Lord of the Rings’. Add to this a tropical island, the world’s longest cave system and the world’s highest via ferrata, it is just an amazing trip in just two weeks!!

You can now include an overnight stay on Selingan Turtle Island and a visit to the Sepilok Orang Utan Rehabilitation Centre . Fly to Sandakan, upon arrival transfer for an hour’s jet boat ride to Turtle Island, transfer to lodge/hotel for lunch. The afternoon is free to relax, snorkel or bird watch! In the evening you are escorted down to view the green turtles coming ashore to lay their eggs and to see the hatching baby turtles scurrying off out to sea.

Those with more time available can extend their journey through Borneo with a relaxing stay on a tropical island such as Gaya.

Dates & Prices

Show prices in
All prices in Euros are guide rates, not live rates
All prices in US Dollars are guide rates, not live rates

Availability

Dates
Flight Inclusive
AvailabilityDays
With Flight
Price
Land Only
Price
With Flight
Select
18th Jul 2023 - 31st Jul 2023 Spaces14 £2,575£3,675 Book Now
2nd Sep 2023 - 15th Sep 2023 Spaces14 £2,575£3,675 Book Now
17th Feb 2024 - 1st Mar 2024 Spaces14 £2,575£3,675 Book Now
20th Jul 2024 - 2nd Aug 2024 Spaces14 £2,575£3,675 Book Now
31st Aug 2024 - 13th Sep 2024 Spaces14 £2,575£3,675 Book Now

* A deposit of £400 will be required at checkout.

Extras

Extras can be added per-person when you book onto a date

ItemPriceDays
Seligan Turtle Island & Sepilok Orangutan Sanctury £250+2 days
Via Ferrata £350

* A deposit of £200 (or the full extra price, whichever is lower) will be required at checkout for each extra added per-person on this trip

What's Included

  • International flights from London (Flight inclusive package)
  • A British expedition team leader. Small groups may use a local leader. 
  • Permits, charges, importation taxes and levies payable to the Local Authorities in connection with the expedition. 
  • Food whilst on the mountain and as described in the trip dossier.
  • Hotel and other valley/town accommodation on a Bed and Breakfast basis.
  • All tents and other communal equipment necessary for the climb. 
  • Medical safety equipment and supplies
  • 90-120 litre kit bag for expedition members for UK based clients. A logoed top will be substituted for all clients residing outside of the UK and for returning clients
  • 24 hour back up and support from UK staff
  • 15% off the RRP on clothing and equipment purchases from Adventure Peaks shop

What's Excluded

  • Travel to and from UK airport
  • Personal climbing clothes and equipment
  • Personal insurance, visas, departure tax and inoculations
  • Drinks and hotel or guest house meals, unless specified
  • Personal medical supplies 
  • Personal use of communication equipment
  • Excess baggage
  • Tips for porters and local guides.
  • Costs associated with an expedition finishing early
  • Costs associated with you leaving an expedition early
  • Costs associated with extending a trip due to bad weather or other circumstances

Itinerary

Day 1

International flight

Day 2

Arrive Kota Kinabalu, transfer by domestic flight to Mulu on the edge of the Gunung Mulu National Park. Overnight Mulu Marriot Hotel & Spa with time to relax and take a swim in the hotel pool surrounded by rainforest (H,B)

Day 3

A relaxing morning with a late start allowing you time to recover from the long international flight. (H, B)

Canopy Skywalk - Deer & Langs Cave
In the afternoon those with a head for heights can impersonate ‘Ant & Dec’ on an optional canopy skywalk. This is a skywalk of about 500m, the longest in the world and takes around 45 minutes to complete. You may be able to see the following en route: macaque monkeys, flying lizards, squirrels, hornbills and a spectacular array of colourful birds. Alternatively, you can explore the lowland creatures. We continue our journey on a scenic 3km plank walk to reach the entrance to Deer Cave, the world’s largest cave passage. Its scale is awesome with moonlike landscape and from one vantage point, a perfect profile of President Lincoln. Next door is Langs cave, famous for its stalactites and stalagmites.

Dusk will be approaching so we gain a good vantage point in readiness to view the great natural phenomenon of millions of bats and swifts leaving and entering the caves in a superlative wildlife spectacle. Return by torchlight to Mulu Marriot Resort.

Day 4

River Journey & Trek to the great Pinnacles
An exciting and varied day starting with a longboat ride up the Melinau River to Kuala Litut. On the way we visit two more caves (not more caves you say, yes but they are spectacular and different with intricate walkways!). Wind Cave and Clearwater Cave, the latter is the longest cave in Asia at 127km, and both display magnificent limestone sculptures. Another hour’s river journey and we arrive at Kuala Litut. We reorganise our bags before we walk through the rainforest to the base of Mt Api and the great ‘Pinnacles’, about 9km. Overnight at Camp 5 which is actually a basic lodge with basic bedding, and a great place to cool off with a swim in the river pools. (Ld, B, L, D)

Day 5

Ascent to the Mulu Pinnacles
After an early start we start to climb Gunung Api for the limestone pinnacles, a steep climb of about 4-5 hrs to reach the summit of the mountain where you can look back on the towering, blade like, limestone pinnacles. A great day for those who like to scramble on steeper ground. The Pinnacles are razor sharp limestone needles rising up 45 metres to create a spectacular sight. This will involve some steep sections where you climb tree routes/branches and rock fixed with ladders and in-situ ropes (not suitable for those who don’t like steep ground). The rewards, however, are awesome as you look out over the great rainforest canopy with the Pinnacles reaching up through the jungle. Our return to camp is by the same route and we spend the remainder of the day relaxing by the river or visiting a nearby population of the fanged pitcher plant. (Ld, B, L, D) (Probably one of the toughest days on this expedition)

Day 6

Return to Mulu National Park HQ
Today we return on foot to Long Litut and our longboat that takes us back down the Melinau River to Mulu Headquarters. If all goes to plan we will arrive around midday in time for lunch. Transfer to Mulu Airport for flight to Kota Kinabalu. (H, B, L)

Day 7

Trek to Mount Trusmadi
After breakfast we depart Kota Kinabalu for Base camp at Kg. Sinua on the remote side of Mount Trusmadi. The journey takes us through the beautiful Crocker Range to Keningau and Sook before reaching Kg Sinua by late afternoon. Mr Dennis our guide, is inspirational, having built his own lodge and created some of the only alternative employment in the valley beyond ‘palm oil’, the enemy of the rainforest! His bamboo lodge looks out to Mt Trusmadi. In 2017 Dennis, in conjunction with Adventure Peaks, made the first ever traverse of Mt Trusmadi via the Mannan and Kaingaran Trails. (L, B, L, D)

Unlike the summit track of Mt. Kinabalu, the trail is heavily foliaged and surrounded by dense vegetation most of the time. The trail is narrow, no boardwalk and hand rail, but lots of overhanging trees, entangled roots with some fixed lines that you must use to haul yourself up.

Day 8

Mount Trusmadi approach day to Khiong Point
A wonderful walk through the jungle, crossing a number of rivers and streams, we weave our way upwards to Shelter Camp II, set in a lovely clearing overlooking the wonderful valley below. Overnight in an open lodge. (Ld, B, L, D) 7-8hrs walking

Day 9

Mount Trusmadi summit day
We leave the lodge in total darkness at around 3am to reach the summit in time to view the sunrise. The ascent is steep and in places it is impossible to climb without the help of in-situ ropes to pull on. Time passes gradually and with hidden interest as your torch lights up beautiful flowers and weird moss sculptures that add to this unique peak. Given good weather the views and sunrise are spectacular and, not to be disappointed, the summit holds one last flower Melastoma minahanse, this plant is only found on Trusmadi and Papua New Guinea. Descend via Kaingaran route to meet our 4x4 transport to the town of Tambunan and return journey to Kota Kinabalu. (H, B, L) 8-9hrs walking

Day 10

Rest day exploring Kota Kinabalu
Optional visit to Poring Hot Springs for a therapeutic bath and marked trails to small waterfalls (approx. £30). (H, B)

Day 11

Summit Approach
We depart our hotel in Kota Kinabalu and travel 1.5 hours to Kinabalu Park. We register our names with the Park Office for the mountain climb and proceed to the start of the summit trail from Timpohon Gate at 1866m. We trek up through a variety of terrain and ‘cloud forest’ to Pendant Hut 3289m, enjoying a packed lunch along the way. Look out for pitcher plants and orchids. The air will start to feel considerably colder here due to the altitude. Overnight at Pendant Hut. (R, B, L, D)

Day 12

To the Summit of Kinabalu
We rise early around 0200hrs to climb to the summit of Mt Kinabalu in time for a magnificent sunrise. The route is lit by torchlight or moonlight and we adopt a steady pace taking into consideration the affects of altitude as we head upwards towards the summit. As day breaks you should be rewarded with stunning views and on a clear day can see as far as the southern islands of the Philippines. We descend back to the refuge for a relaxing breakfast or tackle the optional world’s highest Via Ferrata as an exciting alternative way to descend down to the refuge! If you like to scramble this is brilliant and not to be missed. After breakfast we descend to the park gate and transfer back to our hotel in Kota Kinabalu. (H, B, L)

Day 13

Fly to Sandakan, upon arrival transfer for an hour’s jet boat ride to Selingan Turtle Island, transfer to lodge/hotel for lunch. The afternoon is free to relax, snorkel or bird watch! In the evening we will be escorted down to view the green turtles coming ashore to lay their eggs and to see the hatching baby turtles scurrying off out to sea. (Ld, B, L, D)

Day 14

Sepilok Orangutan Sanctuary
Return by boat to Sandakan and transfer to the Sepilok Orangutan Sanctuary where captive orangutans are reintroduced into the wild. Return to Sandakan then fly to Kota Kinabalu. (H, B)

Days 15 - 16

Return International flights. (H, B)

Photos

Insurance

It is essential for a trip of this type that you are adequately insured. When researching insurance options, please ensure the policy covers you for the following:

  • Cancellation or curtailment
  • Helicopter rescue (most insurance companies will no longer cover for ‘search and rescue’ but providing you stay with the group, they will assist with ‘rescue’)
  • Repatriation
  • The altitude that you are expected to attain
  • The location especially when travelling to Antarctica
  • Grade of trek/climb/expedition
  • Medical cover

Adventure Peaks partners with Global Rescue to offer the world’s leading travel protection services.  Medical and security emergencies happen. When they do, we rely on Global Rescue to provide our clients with medical, security, travel risk and crisis response services. Without a membership, an emergency evacuation could cost over $100,000. More than one million members trust Global Rescue to get them home safely when the unexpected happens. We highly recommend our clients enroll with Global Rescue:
https://partner.globalrescue.com/adventurepeaks/



We are aware the following provide insurance:

For UK based clients:

HCC Medical Insurance Services: LLC sales@hccmis.com  Tel: 1-800-605-2282
Travelex Ins. Services: www.travelexinsurance.com  Tel: 1-800 228 9792
True Traveller Ins: www.truetraveller.com  Tel: 0333 999 3140 for treks including over 4500m
Austrian Alpine Club (UK) www.aacuk.org.uk  Tel: +44 (0)1929 556870
Rothwell & Towler: www.world-first.co.uk  Tel: 0345 908 0161 (under 6400m)
Campbell Irvine: www.campbellirvine.com  Tel: 0207 938 1737 (Not for treks/climbs with ropes – OK for Aconcagua)
J S Insurance: www.jsinsurance.co.uk  Tel: 0844 848 1500
Snowcard: www.snowcard.co.uk  Tel: 01295 660836
The B.M.C.: www.thebmc.co.uk  Tel: 0161 445 6111 (call and speak to Jim. Please note the BMC cannot cover Mt Damavand)
Dogtag: www.dogtag.co.uk  Tel: 0800 036 4824 (Check excess etc)

For non-UK based clients:

HCC Medical Insurance Services: LLC sales@hccmis.com  Tel: 1-800-605-2282
Travelex Ins. Services: www.travelexinsurance.com  Tel: 1-800 228 9792
True Traveller Ins: www.truetraveller.com  Tel: 0333 999 3140 for treks including over 4500m
Austrian Alpine Club (UK): www.aacuk.org.uk  Tel: +44 (0)1929 556870
AXA Worldwide Travel Ins: www.axainsurance.com  Tel: +44 (0)844 874 0360
Ingle International: www.ingleinternational.com  Tel: (USA) 1.800.360.3234
Insure for Less: www.insure4less.com.au (Australian clients)

You do not have to use any of the above, but if you make your own insurance arrangements documentary evidence of your own policy is required.

Please forward the details of your Insurance as soon as you have it: we need the insurance company’s name, their 24 hour emergency telephone number and your insurance policy number – admin@adventurepeaks.com

 

Reviews

Steve T · 5 years ago ·

This was a stunning expedition - and bloody hard work!
We cannot thank Adventure Peaks enough for the organisation and success of this trip. Everything we asked for to be included was, and our three weeks in Borneo effectively ran like clockwork. Choices of hotels for us was excellent and the guides used were at least good. Indeed, Dennis, our guide for Tusmadi, was both excellent and inspiring in what he is trying to achieve out there. Food throughout our stay was always good sometimes very good, but one did get a little fed up of rice at one or two points (especially when it was three times a day) and yearned for a good old cheese sandwich! The AP leader was excellent despite some fairly major issues to deal with beyond our immediate visit in Borneo and an outstanding example of true professionalism. On a more personal note it was indeed due to him that his help and cajoling got me to achieve as much as I did - being the least fit and struggling with the heat and humidity, he really helped in ensuring I reached the tops of all three objectives, Thank you.
If there was anything to be done to improve this trip further it would be to try and include a couple of extra rest days between the three ascents. None of them are particularly high but the Borneo environment is grueling! If considering this trip be aware, kilometers easily feel like miles if not actually double the distance and the ascents are unrelenting and the 'Pinnacles' day simply brutal!
The kit list supplied was very accurate and we were very glad to have taken its advice, such as taking covered toe sandals for river work. It is debatable as to whether climbing boots are needed but perhaps we were lucky with very little rain - it could have been very different.
We added on a few days on Gaya Island resort and AP sorted this in to our itinerary and transfers also worked well for this despite the official trek being over.
All in all, this was everything and more that we had hoped for, we cannot recommend Adventure Peaks highly enough.


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