Sultan Abu Bakar Lake (Ringlet Lake)
Tourism Malaysia Cameron Highlands

Finally, the Sultan Abu Bakar Lake (Ringlet Lake) in Cameron Highlands has been fixed! Hope the restoration would boost tourism Malaysia! It has taken them many years to restore the lake to its pristine state that I thought they would never be able to do it. Kudos to the authorities. Let's hope they can maintain it. But with so much development going on in Cameron Highlands, you never know some farmer or developer upstream may make a boo-boo and that the silt comes crashing down again.

The Sultan Abu Bakar (Ringlet) Lake is restored.

I still remember way back in the 1990s when I first went up Cameron Highlands and stopover at the Lakehouse Hotel or even at the simple row of shop stalls selling vegetables, flowers and potted plants, I would feast my eyes on the lakeview scenery. Back then, cameras were still using film and were costly to develop a row of film, so I took pictures carefully. Still I amassed quite a pile of photos and rummaging through I found an old photo of me on a marble bench (I think this marble bench has long been removed by now) with the Sultan Abu Bakar Lake looking great behind me.

Yep, that's me! Looked real young then, eh?

Fast forward, ten years later I was pretty much shock and disappointed at the environmental damaged done to it from silt that came from development upstream. This silting damage probably happened sometime in 2003/2004. I have a photo of it taken in Jun 2005 with some vegetation beginning to grow. Though they tried to do some desilting at the end of 2005, the effort was half hearted. By 2006/2007 the lake was a total goner with lalang and plants growing everywhere. Didn't take any photo at that time though I wish I had. It was really bad.

The Sultan Abu Bakar Lake looking sorry like a mud pie.

In the end the TNB guys has to do something about it as the lake was also part of the Sultan Abu Bakar electric hydro dam system and the silting might affect their hydro dam system. This time it was a real effort. It must have taken them about 2 years to do it.

The Sultan Abu Bakar Lake looking sorry like a mud pie.

So finally when perchance that we made a stopover at the row of market stalls located next to it. I got a good look at it while the missus went about buying some extra vegetables for the night steamboat at the apartment.

I was pleasantly surprised that the lake was finally restored. No more mud pies, no more undesirable lalang and vegetation growth. Though it is not crystal clear, I think that would be expecting too much, at least it has a healthy grey to it. Though some tinge of mud might still be seen, but generally it was looking like a real lake again!

An esplanade like walkway was built for enjoying the beautiful view.

And there was some interesting structure, a bridge like esplanade walkway to enjoy the picturesque scenery. Perhaps a good place to do some angling too. Any anglers amongst my readers?

There's also an interesting pondok with its high roof that you probably won't get any good shelter if any downpour comes a calling. Still it is a place where you can sit and relax and enjoy a nice beautiful view of the lake.

An interesting pondok to sit and relax.

And guess what? When I told my wife the lake is looking beautiful again, she said, "Perhaps now it is a good time to book Lakehouse hotel with a lake view facing room." Oh, no! That's going to burn a hole in my pocket. Never mind, it's a once a lifetime thingy. Will have to put it in my list of hotels that I would like to try in Cameron Highlands, including YTL Cameron Higlands Resort which will definitely burn a big, big hole in my pocket! Anything for my darling sweetheart...

Cheers!
Jan.

11/May/2009


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