Photos taken during the 3-day trek to the Pinnacles, a unique Karstic rock formation in Gunung Mulu National Park (Borneo Island).
The Mulu Pinnacles are Karstic rock formations in the shape of huge vertical sharp blades up to about 50 m (150 feet) high, in a remote rain forest over Gunung Api mountain. The Pinnacles were formed by erosion of the Karstic limestone rock forming the mountain.
The climb to the Pinnacles was the toughest day-hike I ever did at the time - but that was before I climbed the Semeru volcano in Java!
The 2.4 Km (1.5 Miles) trail from Camp 5 to the Pinnacles overview point is extremely steep from beginning to end (1,200 meter / 4,000 feet elevation). The last couple of hundred meters of the trail is a steep via ferrata with 15 ladders bolted to the rocks and knotted ropes. It does not require any technical climbing skills, but the tropical climate (hot temperature and extreme humidity), and the tricky terrain (slippery, muddy, sharp rocks, very steep) and the lack of water (each person must carry 3 to 4 liters of water on the way up) makes the climb very tough and possibly dangerous. Many people get injured on this trail every year, and evacuation is not simple as the Pinnacles are located in a rain forest wilderness with no road or boat access.
The jungle trail between the Melinau river drop-off and Camp 5 is about 8 Km (5 miles). It is flat and well marked, and goes through a pristine rain forest.
The trek to reach the Pinnacles (and back) from the Park headquarters takes 3 days, with 2 nights at Camp 5, located at the base of the trail to the Pinnacles.