Mount Trusmadi climbing tips

I received an email from my fellow doctor colleague, Ragu, last week about climbing the second highest mountain in Malaysia, Mount Trusmadi. Basically, he is a hardcore mountain climber and devoted his leisure time doing outdoor activities. He was asking whether we could plan our Mount Trusmadi climbing trip ourselves, rather than paying kind of “over priced” pre-prepared package by some of the tour operators around Sabah.

I said yes, but there are not much of valuable information around the internet as Trusmadi is not a tourist spot (not like Kinabalu). It is kind of Sabah’s best kept secret, and it is meant for hardcore mountain climbers. Ordinary tourist will find it very hard and boring. Anyway, if you are like Dr. Ragu (he is a plastic surgeon, like NIP/TUCK television series), here would be my personal tips on conquering Mount Trusmadi.

Few things that we need to remember:

  1. Mount Trusmadi is kind of ‘virgin’ mountain in Sabah. It is still under the Forestry Department, not under Sabah Parks like Kinabalu and Tambuyukon. So, the climbing permit must be acquired from the Forestry Department before you are allowed to climb. You need to request for the permit at least 2 weeks before you start the climb.
  2. It is even more challenging than Kinabalu, suitable for hard core mountain climbers. If you think that Kinabalu is tough, do not even think about this mountain.
  3. You can summit the peaks in 2d1 night, but you need to be really fit. Some climbers do it in 3d2n to spend more time with mother nature.
  4. You are going to travel through really rough terrain, mainly used for logging purposes, to get to the starting point in Kg. Kaingaran. You really need a sturdy 4wd to get there. Traveling from Tambunan (the small town which is near the mountain) will take about 1 hour.
  5. As it is a non-tourist mountain to climb, you have to bring along all your climbing gear – from your portable stove to leech socks to toilet paper.
  6. I must emphasize that Trusmadi is not for the faint hearted.

The best place to inquire about the trip up the mountain is from Tambunan Village Resort Center (TVRC), which is in err… Tambunan. They are now known as The Borneo Heritage Village. They are the best place for you to seek additional information for the climb, but unfortunately they do not have a good official website on that matter. Contact them at +6087-774076, or email at borneohv@streamyx.com. Otherwise, you can seek the available tour company who can provide you with the information package on the internet by just typing ‘mount trusmadi’ on Google Search. You can get the itinerary for 3d2n trip Mount Trusmadi on this and this page.

TVRC is can be appointed as the ‘basecamp’ of Mount Trusmadi. It has accommodations for climber to stay overnight before proceeding to the climb on the next day. They also can provide you with porters, guides, permits and foods up the mountain. The last time I called, you can also rent some of your climbing gear from them.

Basically, the things that you can ask TVRC for help are:

  1. Return transfer from KK International Airport to Tambunan (TVRC).
  2. Transport from TVRC to the starting point in Kg. Kaingaran using 4WD.
  3. Porters and Guides.
  4. Climbing permit from Forestry Department.
  5. Accommodation.

I think that by directly contacting them, you can save around 10-30% of the cost compared to having a tour operator to host your trip.

12 thoughts on “Mount Trusmadi climbing tips

  1. I blogged about my parents climb here at Mt. Trusmadi recently. You can check it out. I put some pics of their climb there..

    http://jpajuni.blog.com/1610309/

    And if you need assistance in getting the permit, you can contact Mahua Nature Holidays as well (link can be found on my blog). They can help you get it, and also get u a guide as well. 🙂

  2. Hi JACQ,

    Thank you for your additional info. I did came across your blog about Trusmadi and wanted to contact you, but I forgot.

    Anyway, nice blog!

  3. Of course there is more than one reason to take a guide. 2 friends of mine turned down an invitation to trek up Mt Rinjani, Lombok with 2 other tourists who decided to save by going it alone. They later learned that the tourist couple had been stabbed to death.

  4. hi! your entry was helpful as we are looking for hiking trips outside the philippines. we’re looking for a trusmadi-kinabalu package however we find it really expensive in most agencies we’ve searched across the internet. i just emailed tvrc a while ago and i do hope we get a fast reply.

    thank you very much for the juicy information

  5. Hi deicruxified,

    Thank you for your comments. I am glad that you find my entry helpful. I may be able to help on your trip here, just email me directly for more info.
    Cheers!

  6. hi…
    i will climb both mountain Tambuyukun and Trusmadi 1st week of april this year.
    our trip is tight and pack.

    can u advice on any gear that should we bring in on.

  7. Hello there.

    I am from Singapore and I have climbed Mt Trusmadi last december.
    Well,the climb up is quite ok,compared to the fitness level conquering alpine mountains but a level of physical fitness is needed to climb up the mountain.

    The journey up is filled with mud tracks and quite a number of climbing using hands and legs. But the campsite which is located at the halfway journey of the mountain is quite a luxury as there is a man-made hut with bunk beds made of wood up there,there is even a toilet. It just gets kinda chilly at nights and morning. So yes,bring a jacket.

    The view from the summit and on the way up is incredible as it is surrounded by other mountains and on the summit,you can see Mt Kinabalu(if the weather is nice).

    If there is any questions do hit me back.

    Hope my info helps.

  8. Hi…

    I was climbed Mt Trusmadi twice…such a wonderful journey..just want to share that the place is so incredible and awesome view all the way….

  9. I wish to climb mount trusmadi …
    is there anyone, who knows how to manage the procedure to book a place ?? BTW mount Trusmadi is under Sutera Sanctuary Lodges ?? Sabah Park or ?????

  10. Trus Madi Mountain;you can do the climbing through our Tropical Mountain Holidays Co.an In Bound Tour Operator registered in Malaysia with Licence no:KPL/LN:6798-and Co.no:853863-U.Our Co is specialize in mountains climbing,especially Climbing Mt.Kinablu and Mt.Trus Madi.Our contact Tel. No.:0135457643/0135492730(Michael)

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