WJxc Ride#9 Cherry Marathon 74km, Karawang (En) – part1
Cikarang, 14 Oct 2012
This trip, the trip to Cherry, been always in my list of ride for long long time. The track is too famous, and then become a benchmark for every mountain bike rider in Cikarang and Karawang area. I heard about the roughness of this track since five years ago, since my first encounter with mountain bike activity. Again, because it’s so famous. Too many people in cikarang mountain biking scene talk about it.
It’s been postponed and postponed, especially because my own fear, my own weakness. I was enjoy uphill, being an uphill enthusiast, and then heard that this track is long and full of rolling terrain. Rolling is the terrain combination between uphill and downhill side by side. This kind of terrain was the last thing I wanna ride. Being an uphill enthusiast a short downhill and uphill consecutively in my opinion is like going nowhere. You do a hard uphill, not too long, and then followed by short downhill also for not too long. It felt like a torture for me.Before decide to finally take this route for a solo trip I have been trained myself to adopt to rolling terrain. I push myself to find what to enjoy in this kind of cycling track. I do some series of rides, what I called ‘bimbel’ (Bahasa term means some kind of training for kids in schools, training program outside the official school hours). The main training ground are tracks around Sand Diego and Pasircongcot area.
One of the final training part was when I was doing solo ride night-ride San Diego-Pasircongcot ride. The enjoyment and excitement during this ‘bimbel’ ride been told me the beauty side of rolling terrains. Finally I was accustomed to rolling track, I know how to enjoy the track.
Choosing the right track was a big problem. There have been so many combinations around the area. There are a lot lot of tracks goes through Cherry. A combinations ins and outs. Count yourself a lot of permutations available. Finally I decide to take the most far options, combine Fun-Cherry, Hutan Jati and Goa Bau. Decide solo ride will be only depend on my speed on my own will and a lot options to change by on site decisions.
That morning, leave home at 530am and finding a smell of fresh dew when hit offroad area from Kalimalang to SanDiego. A favorite bimbel track felt like my own backyard. Reach San Diego, a small traditional restaurant at around 700am and take a fast breakfast. San Diego Soup was the main menu, my fave menu. Fresh and hot, heat up you body, warm up your feeling since this would be the last decent logistics loading. I load two tumbler full. One with fresh water and another with sweet cold tea Tehbotol. Ready to go…
In doubt on what option route to take, regular-cherry or fun-cherry? Fun-cherry will give more load to the track, this is the longest track to Cherry. Passing by the junction, finally turned back to junction and take fun-cherry route. Rolling track start to hit my bike. Up to first 3km we still can find a lot of trees, some of the villages are still green and felt cool. Up to first 5km we still met other team want to go to Cherry. After that, all alone to the edge of the fun-cherry route.There was a released plan that this area will be the place of the new Jakarta’s airport. Currently the area was rarely inhabited, lack of infrastructure. After 5km from San Diego I cannot see any electricity lines. Yet the area already in the heat of land ownership problems. Can be seen by a lot of signage claimed that the land was never been sold. Some ruins ex houses look like the house had taken unexpected treatment rather than expected planned moving.
Going countless up and down hills finally I felt need a break after around 2 hours riding. Looking at my GPS the trip was not yet over 20% of distance to Cherry. I see a simple ‘warong’ (small shop) equiped with ice then I stop and order cola with ice. Due to start at early morning, the heat of the terrain has just start striking our body. I cannot imagine if the trip start late 2-3 hours after.
I often hear stories that we will be lack of logistic support (small shops) around the track, actual situation I face was not as bad as I thought. Yes, the shop is not every 5km, yes there was no electricity, but at least we have place to buy cool and sweet drinks along the way.The first real pitstop for around 20 minutes will cool soda-drink really boost up my enthusiasm. What happen next was entering the far and outside, corner of the track. Feel like going into corner of the world. The track from tarmac becom a clear fireroad. I cannot imagine what would be the track condition in rainy season. Will be full of mud. Even in the peak of dry season like October, we still feel like in the middle of nowhere. Actually also happened since the GPS track lead me into a dead end.
Yes. Dead end. Jalan Buntu.
It was not easy handling myself facing this situation. Try to keep logical was my main priority, controlling urge of excitement to continue, monitoring condition of the track, and keep doing it safely since nobody else but you. The experience itself has thought me abundance of lessons. It was not about the reality to continue following the GPS tracklog (which later on I found Om Hanif, the trekbuilder himself, was not taking this route and was taken another safer route). It was about handling the pressure and go through it.
continued to part2…