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Tuesday, 29 September 2015

Retracing Rhododendron Hill Peak & Trail No. 14

Viewpoint just above Puncak Arabella in Tanah Rata. Mount Berembun is on the right and whereas Mount Batu Brinchang is right ahead (11 o'clock direction) obscured by clouds.

Rhododendron Hill and Myrtle Hill were in my exploration plans since a few years back but never had the time to set foot on them. Until recently.

These two hills bear the old, colonial names during the days of late Sir William Cameron. Existingly, they are known as Bukit Mentigi and Bukit Kemunting respectively.  

The name "Rhododendron Hill" was noted in a local paper dated 12th May 1925. J.B. Scrivenor (Director of Geological Survey, FMS) stated "Rhododendron Hill", "Myrtle Hill", "Parit Falls" and "Robinson Falls" had survived, further quoting the latter was name in honour of H.C. Robinson whereas the rest were descriptive and apt. Apparently the name Myrtle Hill did not survive; and the name Bukit Kemunting is seldom used. 

On the larger map (10 in. = 1 mile), Scrivenor recognised that Myrtle Hill and Rhododendron Hill appeared as Bukit Kemunting and Bukit Mentigi respectively; he did not understood how "mentigi" appeared as a Malay name for Rhododendron; it was R.J. Wilkinson gave that Malay plant-name to represent rhododendron and whereas Kemunting was a literal translation. Mentigi in Bahasa Malaysia refers to a small plant.
Myrtle Hill (Bukit Kemunting) is located at coordinates N4.49129 E101.38444. The hill is located on the left side of the main road Jalan Pahang after the golf course but before reaching Brinchang town. It is the hill behind Parkland Apartment on its South-East with Strawberry Park Resort on its North-West. Jalan Kemunting is one of the roads branching off Jalan Pahang into Myrtle Hill. Since the hill is "well-developed" with private residences and resorts, I have not attempted to check out the hill. Moreover, there is no "tourist" forest trail to walk.

On the other hand, Rhododendron Hill, more widely known as Bukit Mentigi, has a peak with a viewpoint nearby and a couple of forest trails, namely Trail No. 13 and Trail No. 14.